Are you one of those people who are curious about goji berries? If yes, then this comprehensive guide is for you!
Incredibly tasty and used in everyday recipes like smoothies and muffins, goji is one of the most versatile types of berries.
The edible fruit is known for its bright, attractive color and surprisingly unique taste and goes by many names: wolfberries, goji, lycii fruit, and happy berries.
Considered versatile, the berry has also been used in traditional medicine in Asian countries for thousands of years, especially in China.
Here’s a complete guide for you to learn more exciting facts about the fruit!
This article also features some ways to add goji berries to recipes!
Native to Asia, goji berries are an edible fruit (berry to be exact) that come from the solanaceous (nightshade) plant family.
They’re now cultivated throughout the globe.
However, China and Mongolia are a few of the world’s top goji importers.
The berries have a bright red-orange hue with a diameter ranging from up to 2 centimeters and a shape akin to currant fruit, a small sweet berry.
As for its taste, the goji berry flavor is tangy yet sweet with an undertone of cranberry and cherry.
The skin and seeds of goji berries are edible like raisins.
Thanks to their versatility, people in Asian countries have been using berries in their daily recipes.
A few popular things you can make using goji berries are smoothies, juices, tea, soups, scones, and muffins.
Fresh goji berries aren’t something you can buy easily in the US; this is likely due to the lack of production in the country.
Well, don’t be sad as these delicate berries are often available for purchase in frozen, powdered, or dried form. (If there’s a Central Market near you, this might be the best place to find packaged dried goji.)
What do goji berries taste like?
As mentioned, the goji berry is generally tart and sweet with a hint of cranberry and cherry.
Dried goji berries are chewy with a concentrated flavor that is less tart than dried cranberries, more mild than cherries.
Also, the texture of the fresh fruit is delicate and juicy with no noticeable seeds.
How to use goji berries
Since goji berries are available in several forms, you can add them to numerous recipes.
Below are the possible things you can do in case you have dried or fresh berries on hand:
- Toss dried goji berries alongside pecans in a fall-inspired salad.
- Turn the fruit into this no-bake vanilla-packed snack.
- Incorporate the lovely flavor of dried goji in this ginger tea.
- Combine cacao and goji berries to create delicious maca balls.
- Take your quinoa squares game up an extra notch by adding goji.
- Use fresh goji berries to make these warm cookies for breakfast.
- Make these goji berry and hazelnut truffles for special holidays.
- Make everyone’s tummy happy with this goji berry snack mix.
How to store goji berries
Since it’s impossible to get fresh goji berries anytime, the dried version of the fruit works well in some of your goji-based recipes.
To extend the shelf life of dried berries for longer use, here’s how to store them the right way.
- Dried goji berries
- Airtight container
Instructions for storing dried goji berries:
- Transfer the dried berries to an airtight container. Storing this way prevents the berries from drying out.
- Keep them in a cool, dark place, preferably in your pantry.
- Enjoy the dried berries for about one year.
The bottom line
Goji berries are a fruit that is undeniably versatile and delicious.
Whether you turn them into muffins, juices, teas, these berries can genuinely add a pop of color and packs a unique flavor.
If you’re lucky you can pick some up at the farmer’s market right after being harvested in the late summer and fall.
Just ensure to pick those with a pink-ish or red color and waxy, shiny appearance!