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Blueberries are famed for their gorgeous and delicious taste while also being small enough that they can be eaten in bulk. The nutritional values of blueberries are also quite impressive, and this fruit can even be made into a jam or juice for even more ways to consume it.
Table of Contents
What is a blueberry?
Blueberries are considered to belong to the family of Vaccinium, which has other members included in it such as cranberries, huckleberries, and bilberries. All of these share the same native homeland of North America, although they can easily be exported around the world. The shrubs on which blueberries grow are classified as prostate shrubs and they can grow anywhere from 4 inches to a staggeringly tall 13 feet.
There are two types of blueberries and these are the highbush blueberries and lowbush blueberries. Highbush blueberries are a lot more common and are sold commercially in supermarkets and other retailers. Their lowbush counterparts are more often seen in farms and found in the wild in Canadian provinces. Blueberries start their life with a green pale color that matures and eventually turns into the iconic dark purple hue that everyone is familiar with.
How are blueberries grown?
Blueberries are quite commonly found in the wild as they are not too demanding when it comes to being grown. However, if you want to grow them locally by yourself then obviously you will need to prepare. Thankfully, blueberry shrubs are really easy to grow and are also disease resistant which is great for any first-time growers. Depending on the climate you are in, you will have to choose between highbush and lowbush but any local seed retailers will tell you which ones to buy and grow. Although almost all of them grow in warm climates
Blueberries are easy to grow and only need to be planted in acidic soil that is slightly shaded. Other than this, the only thing you need to take care of is irrigation. Water them with rainwater and keep them in moist soil during the growing seasons, not soaking wet. Pruning is rarely needed with blueberries and within a year, your shrub should start showing you ripe fruit during the harvesting season which is mid-summer. If wanting to pot them first, it is helpful to plant them in dampened sphagnum peat moss.
What are blueberries defined as?
Blueberries, as you can guess by their name, as classified as a berry. Berries are a sub-category of fruit and are defined by being fruits without a stone or a pit, in a botanical definition. Other botanical berries are; grapes, currants, tomatoes, and cucumbers.
The difference between botanical and culinary definitons
As mentioned, blueberries are defined as berries in a botanical sense. But what is a botanical definition? Well, the world of natural food is divided into categories with their own definitions to help organize them. This is known as a botanical definition, where each item is put in a certain category based on the criteria it fits. If some items have seeds enclosed within them, or instead have no seeds or pits, then they are put into different categories. The other way of categorizing this is by a culinary definition which focuses more on how they are used in cooking and how they taste. The main example of this is that in a botanical sense, tomatoes are berries. However, from a culinary perspective, tomatoes are vegetables.
Nutritional value of blueberries
Blueberries are known as a superfood due to their insane nutritional values. They are an excellent source of a lot of vitamins and are also used as antioxidants. In blueberries, you will find some carbs, but this is only a small 14% compared to the 84% of water that is in them. The rest is made up of small amounts of protein and fat. Other than this, blueberries have a high amount of fiber in them which is important for gut health.
In terms of vitamins and minerals, blueberries have a lot of vitamin C and vitamin K which are great for skin health and reducing blood clotting, respectively. alongside these vitamins, blueberries also have magnesium in them which is needed for the production of natural amino acids.
Blueberries have a lot of health benefits as well such as improving heart health, brain health, and helping to control your blood sugar levels. This is very important as the leading cause of death worldwide is due to heart disease, so an introduction of blueberries to your diet can prove very helpful.
It is extremely rare for someone to have an allergy to blueberries
Are there seeds in blueberries?
To finally answer the question of “do blueberries have seeds?” Because of their small size, people commonly, and wrongly, assume that the blueberries themselves are the seeds. This is a myth, and the seeds are contained right within the fruit. They are tiny, soft, and completely edible which is why people often never see a blueberry seed. These tiny seeds can range in number from between 10-20 seeds per fruit depending on if they are highbush or lowbush.
The seeds usually go unnoticed due to how small they are. It is only common in fully or overripe blueberries that the seeds are even noticed.
Can you eat blueberry seeds?
The revelation that you have been eating loads of blueberry seeds your entire life may be worrying, but before you panic let me reassure you that they are completely safe to eat. They are soft and chewy which means they are safe for human consumption. Some fruits will have seeds that are now easily digestible such as plums and cherries which have poisonous seeds, but blueberry seeds are harmless.
Blueberries are incredibly good at being antioxidants and even the seeds are full of great nutrition such as vitamin C, vitamin K, and fiber. They are also rich in omega-3.
Can you extract blueberry seeds?
If you are wanting to separate the seed from the berry, you will be happy to know that it is possible to extract blueberry seeds from their pulp. To extract seeds from a blueberry you can use a multitude of methods.
Using a potato masher, place half a cup of blueberries in a bowl and start mashing them. Pour this into a jar and add some water, after a while the seeds will settle at the bottom and the pulp can be poured away. Not all of it will go the first time so you want to repeat this method a few times until you are left with just seeds. Leave your seeds to rest on a paper towel.
Similar to the mashing method, you will need to use water to separate the pulp and seeds. However, first of all, you are going to want to blend the berries for 10 seconds in a blender until it liquidizes. This is when you pour that mixture into a jar and keep adding water and pouring the pulp away until you are left with nothing but seeds which you are then free to dry and inspect.
You can most likely identify the pattern by now, but this time instead of a masher or blender, you will want to use a herb grinder. After they are fully ground you will want to pour them into a jar and add water. The seeds will settle at the bottom and you can pour the rest away and repeat this until you have nothing left but seeds.
What to make with blueberries
If this article suddenly has you craving blueberries, then do not worry because I have you covered! Blueberries are so versatile and can be thrown in many meals to make them nicer. One of the most popular ones is mixing them in with your pancake batter and having blueberry pancakes. But other than that, here are some more ideas on how to eat more blueberries.
Nature’s bounty is a delicious alternative to cereal and consists of nothing but ice and fruits. It may sound simplistic, and it is, but it tastes so so good. The beauty of this cereal is that you can make it however you want. Some people like to use cherries (pitted) with blueberries, raspberries, and Kiwi slices. Other than this you use coconut water in the place of milk, and you can also use chunks of ice as a way to add more texture to the cereal, to give it that iconic crunch.
Another great way to include blueberries is with muffins! Muffins can be eaten any time of day, but can also be eaten at breakfast with no shame at all. This makes them a great candidate for adding blueberries. The recipes will differ depending on what muffins you are making, but if you cannot find a blueberry muffin recipe that works for you then use your go-to recipe, and once you’ve made the batter, mix the blueberries in! once baked, the muffins will have little chunks of blueberry in them that will give them a fruity delicious burst of flavor.
The final verdict on blueberry seeds
Blueberry seeds do exist, to answer any questions. Thankfully, they are completely edible due to how small they are. There are about 10-20 in each blueberry but they are so small and soft that you will not even notice them unless you physically try to find them.
How many seeds are in a single blueberry?
Highbush blueberries are typically larger and will have around twenty seeds, whereas lowbush blueberries are smaller and will contain a number of seeds closer to ten.
Are there any berries without seeds?
There are varieties of some berries that grow without seeds, and these include a variety of grapes, blueberries, and raspberries. However, it is rare to find these varieties so people often believe they do not exist. They are specially bred with crossbreeding to ensure that they have no seeds in them.