Did You Know That These 3 Vegetables Are Actually Fruits?

Man cutting up cucumbers on a cutting board
Photo by Igor Miske on Unsplash

Most of us think we can distinguish fruits from vegetables at any given moment, but once you start thinking about it, you realize that for some of them, botanical definitions don’t match our everyday knowledge. While the word fruit refers to a specific part of the plant, a vegetable can be any plant part that’s edible: root (carrot), leaves (lettuce), and so on. That’s why, botanically speaking, some well-known vegetables are, in fact, fruits. Here are three of them.


You probably didn’t expect corn kernels to be defined as fruit, but that’s exactly what they are. It’s also a grain, and we were surprised to learn that some fruits can also be grains.


Cucumber is a fruit just like watermelon and cantaloupe are fruits. It may not be sweet, but it grows in a similar way and shares many properties with the latter two. Imagine telling someone that pickles are actually part of a fruit salad!


You’ve probably seen this fun fact somewhere on the internet already, and yes, tomato is actually a fruit. That’s only according to the botanists, as everyone else will tell you that tomato is a vegetable and should be treated like one. Ultimately, it’s your decision what you call it.