Is It Safe To Eat Rambutan Seeds?
If you’ve recently brought the fruit Rambutan, you might be wondering how to eat this tropical fruit, do you eat the seeds or just the fruit?
Rambutan fruit seeds are indeed edible, but only when they are roasted, it’s fine to eat a couple of the raw seeds but they can contain toxic levels so we would suggest roasting them instead or eating an alternative seed.
In our informational guide below, we will take you through what the Rambutan fruit is, the health benefits of eating them, how to eat Rambutan fruit seeds as well as the type of fruit and how it compares to others.
What Are Rambutans?
Rambutan fruit is a type of fruit which is similar to a lychee, the name of it translates to the name hairy and is found in many countries in Asia.
The fruit itself is red and hairy with a single seed inside, it comes in an oval shape and the fruit trees are female, male or hermaphrodite. You will find most fruit trees grow between 50 and 80 feet.
Nutritional Content Of Rambutans
Not only do Rambutan fruits have an exotic flavor boost, but they are also very healthy with sweet and sour flour.
We’ve listed the nutritional content of these fruits down below.
- 123 calories.
- 16.5g of sodium.
- 1.4g of fiber.
- 1g of protein.
- 31.3g of carbohydrates.
- 0.5g of manganese.
Are There Benefits To Eating Rambutans?
Rambutan fruits have many additional health benefits apart from being tasty, we’ve listed the benefits to including these fruits in your diet down below.
- Helps healthy digestion – Rambutan fruits are very high in insoluble fiber meaning it leaves your body mostly undigested, this helps to add bulk to your stool due to the fiber content and stops you from getting constipated. The soluble fiber inside helps with healthy gut bacteria.
- Rich in antioxidants – Rambutans are a good source of vitamin C and copper which are great for the body and are full of antioxidants to help you fight off disease.
- Could help weight loss – Rambutan fruits are pretty low in calories considering how high in dietary fiber they are, the fiber in rambutan can help you feel fuller for longer which could potentially help you with weight loss and prevent you from snacking. You can find out here about Which Seeds Are Good For Weight Loss.
Are Rambutan Seeds Toxic?
Rambutan seeds are toxic, they contain a chemical called saponins which is why a lot of people do not consume them.
For them to have toxic effects on your motor coordination you would need a large portion of them however, around 2,500 mg/kg dose, these toxic chemicals are more potent when the seeds are eaten raw, the roasting process helps to make them more edible but still can contain narcotic properties.
Find out more here about What Seeds Are Edible.
How To Eat Rambutan Seeds?
Before you go ahead and eat Rambutan seeds, you should note that these seeds are not considered to be food-safe, there is still a risk which comes with eating them even after roasting due to their low levels of toxicity.
If you do want to go ahead and roast them, follow the simple method below.
- Begin by washing your Rambutan seeds with some sea salt then lay them out evenly on a lined baking tray. At this point, you can drizzle some olive over the top and any seasonings like garlic powder for example.
- Bake in the oven at 150 degrees for 30 minutes turning once halfway through. Be careful not to burn the seeds.
How To Eat Rambutan
If you would rather stick with eating the Rambutan fruit than eating the seeds, this tropical fruit can be enjoyed as a great snack and is very nutritionally beneficial.
We’ve listed the steps to eating this kind of fruit down below.
- First, make sure you are picking a ripe Rambutan, these will likely be the colour black or red. Hold the native fruit firmly down on a surface then take a sharp knife and cut a slit down the middle only tearing the leathery skin, you can also do this with your fingernails.
- Tear off the skin on the outside to reveal the oval-shaped white flesh and pop it out, depending on your fruit, you might need to make another slit into the juicy flesh and pop out the seed in the middle, in some variations you simply eat the entire fruit then spit the seed out.
- If you have leftovers of this hairy fruit you can use them to make jam, simply peel your rambutans, place them into a pan of boiling water with two cloves and soften the raw rambutan seeds.
- Put the rambutan seeds, and flesh plus 350g of sugar into a pan with a little water and simmer till the mix becomes jam-like, seal in sterilised jars and enjoy on toast!
Rambutan Seeds Vs Longan Fruits – What’s The Difference?
You might have noticed that this Rambutan fruit has similar companions at Asian supermarkets, looking much like Lychee fruits and Longan fruits, so what’s the difference?
All three of these fruits are native to southern Asia and have a white round flesh with a seed in the middle, their flavours and appearance do differ slightly, however.
For example, Rambutan fruits are the largest of all and can have a green tougher exterior sometimes, Lychees on the other hand are smaller and have a crispier less sweet kind of flavour.
Longan fruits are very tart and not sweet at all.
Frequently Asked Questions About Rambutan Seeds
Where do Rambutan trees grow?
Rambutan trees tend to grow throughout Southeast Asia.
What nutrition does the center seed of Rambutans have?
The seeds of Rambutan fruits are high in oleic acid which is a form of Omega-9 fatty acids and is very good for you. They are also full of antioxidants and antibacterial properties.
How does the edible flesh of Rambutan seeds taste?
The flesh of the rambutan can have different tastes according to the ripeness of the fruit, this can be a slightly sweet flavor or tart depending on the type.
Can you ferment Rambutan seeds?
Yes, Rambutan seeds can be fermented by leaving the flesh on the outside for around 6 days covered in banana leaves, they can then be roasted after this process.
How much insoluble fiber does Rambutans have?
Around 50% of a Rambutan fruit is insoluble fiber, making it very good for your digestion and adding bulk to the stool.
How many rambutan fruits can I eat per day?
On average we would not recommend eating more than 5-6 rambutan fruits per day, this is because the little fruits get their sweet flavor from the high sugar content and should therefore be consumed in moderation.
How long do Rambutan fruits last?
On average, you can expect Rambutan fruits to last around 2 weeks, this lifespan can be extended by storing the fruits in the fridge whole and unpeeled in a plastic bag which is sealed.
Are Lychee fruits sweeter than Rambutan fruits?
Lychee fruits are more crispy and tart compared to rambutan fruits, Rambutan fruits on the other hand have a creamier texture and are much sweeter. They all belong to the same fruit family however called the soapberry family in Southern Asia.
Overall, Rambutan seeds are not usually eaten but are edible once roasted, however, we would not suggest eating them in large quantities since they can be slightly toxic.
Other than the seeds, Rambutan fruit flesh can be eaten without any issues and is very nutritious.
Read Next: Do Plant-Based Foods Contain Cholesterol?
Hey'all I'm Amy, a born foodie and diagnosed with celiac disease 7 years ago. I refused to cave into tasteless, boring gulten free food and create my own!
On my blog you'll find info & cool facts along with recipes, all on gluten free foods!