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All About Grapefruit

The grapefruit was discovered in the 17th century and was known as the shaddock or pomelo until the 1800s. Legend has it that a Captain Shaddock, employed by the East India Company, took grapefruit seeds with him to Barbados.

The current name, grapefruit, alludes to clusters of the fruit on the tree, which look like clusters of grapes.


The grapefruit is one of the largest citrus fruits. Two varieties of grapefruit are most often found in stores: the pink grapefruit and the white grapefruit. The skin is usually yellow but can be pink in the case of pink grapefruit, while the flesh varies from pale yellow to dark pink.

How To Choose A Grapefruit

Quality grapefruits are plump and heavy. They should be firm and bounce back to their original shape when pressed. The best grapefruits have a thin skin, which indicates that they hold more juice than spongier, thicker-skinned fruit. Scars, spots and uneven skin texture do not affect the quality of the grapefruit.

Culinary tips and advice

  • Choose a firm grapefruit that is heavy for its size, and free of spots and soft areas.
  • To maximize grapefruit’s flavour, leave it out at room temperature several minutes before eating it.
  • To reduce grapefruit’s bitterness, remove the membrane that covers the fruit sacs with a knife.
  • To make grapefruit easier to pare, remove some of the peel and place the grapefruit in the refrigerator. The cold will cause the white pith to contract and harden, making it easier to remove.
  • The most common way to eat a grapefruit is simply to cut the fruit in two halves and scoop out the pulp with a spoon.
  • The juice of grapefruit is very refreshing and is excellent when used to make vinaigrettes.
  • Coat grapefruit slices with melted butter and brown sugar, then caramelize them under the broiler or on the grill for a refreshing, sweet-tart dessert.

Expert tip

The grapefruit’s slightly acidic taste goes well with seafood and is an excellent complement to duck, chicken and pork dishes.


Grapefruit is available year-round in your METRO grocer's display, but in smaller quantities in July, August and September.

Nutritional value

Like lemons and limes, grapefruit is low in calories. It is a source of vitamin A, folic acid, vitamin C and potassium.

Storage life

Grapefruit can remain at room temperature for a week. To keep it fresh longer, place your grapefruit in the fruit compartment of your refrigerator.