What’s not to love about a glass of orange juice? It’s rich in antioxidants, contains a generous amount of Vitamin C, carotenoids, and flavonoids, and helps in your weight loss journey.
Juicing oranges is a great method to get all of their nutrients and vitamins while also enjoying the delicious taste of freshly squeezed orange juice.
Oranges are made into almost everything: from juice to marmalade and even marinade. Each type of orange has a distinct flavor, appearance, and taste. So, it’s no wonder that each type is best used for something, whether it be cooking, juicing, or nibbling straight out of the skin.
The best orange for juicing depends on what kind of juice you prefer. Some juice enthusiasts prefer to stick to their favorite type of juicing orange, while others prefer to mix oranges to obtain a unique flavor. Below are some of the best juicing oranges and why they're such good choices.
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This orange’s name comes from its origin—Valencia, Spain. If you want to drink freshly squeezed orange juice, these delicious Valencia oranges are the prime pick.
These are the most popular oranges for juicing because of their long shelf-life, ready availability, sweetness, and ease of juicing.
Valencia oranges stay on the tree for several months longer than other oranges, giving it a low LARL. The lower the LARL, the sweeter the orange. Unlike other varieties, they do not get bitter after a long time. As a result, you can keep them in the refrigerator for a long time without worrying about their flavor.
Valencia oranges are available throughout the summer, making its juice the ideal drink for the hot weather. They are also widely available, making them the most commonly used oranges for commercial juices.
Because they have thin skins, a lot of juice, and a few seeds, you'll get the most bang for your buck when juicing a Valencia orange.
California growers named these oranges as such because their apex looks like human navels. They are the most well-known oranges in the world. These oranges come in both seeded and seedless varieties.
The Navel Orange is famous because it is easy to peel, always accessible, and delicious to munch on. Navel oranges are harvested all year; however, the best time to buy them for their juice is during the winter months of November to January.
Navel oranges also have more limonin, giving it a bitter-sweet taste ideal for eating. However, if you wait too long to eat or juice them, they will get bitter. You must drink the freshly squeezed orange juice as soon as possible.
For some, the bitterness may not be a problem. You can add sugar to balance out the bitterness or leave it out if you want to enjoy a cold, tart juice on a hot summer afternoon.
The Blood Orange stands out from the rest because of its crimson-colored flesh. It is not only appealing to the eye but also tastes quite sweet. The presence of pigments gives the fruit and other high-nutrient foods like beets their red hue. And, this same pigment also gives blood oranges the highest antioxidant content compared to others.
Moro, Sanguinello, and Tarocco are the three main varieties, ranging from sour to sweet. Because of this balance of juiciness, sourness, and sweetness, they are a fantastic complement to desserts or sauces, as well as a superb marmalade base. Of course, they can also be eaten raw or juiced.
Blood oranges are easy to peel and have fewer seeds. Also, its acid concentration is slightly lower than the other oranges mentioned, so you don’t have to worry about gastric upset.
They are primarily available from November to April when many other oranges are not available, so it all balances out quite well. However, blood oranges cost more than other varieties.
Cara Cara Orange
This type of orange is a variety of the navel orange. They originated in Venezuela, but they are now primarily farmed in California from December to April. Also known as red-fleshed navel oranges, the Cara Cara is a combination of blood orange and navel orange.
Cara Cara oranges are known for their pleasant sweetness and mild acidity. Imagine the bittersweet goodness of a navel orange combined with the tart bite of a blood orange; it is truly a unique flavor that resembles hints of berries and cherries.
Cara Cara oranges’ Vitamin C and Vitamin A content are higher than regular navel oranges. This medium-sized fruit yields a large amount of juice from a single orange. Furthermore, the pith on this hybrid orange is negligible to non-existent, making it easy to peel.
Due to its sweet flavor, many people prefer Cara Cara oranges for juicing. These oranges have a low acidity, which enhances their sweetness even more. Plus, they are seedless, making them ideal for both eating and juicing.
A cross between a standard orange and a Mandarin orange, clementines are a variety of mandarin oranges that are tiny and sweet. The fundamental distinction between mandarins and clementines is that clementines lack seeds, whereas mandarins have them. Clementines also have loose skin, making them easy to peel.
Although tiniest among our list, clementines contain lots of juice. They're beautiful fruits to eat fresh or in juice form. They are seedless, making your task easier because you won't have trouble getting them into the juicer.
Because they are available from November to April, they are an excellent choice for the winter season.
The drawback of clementine oranges for juicing is that you will need many to make enough juice. Thus, you may end up spending more.
Although small, the tangerine orange is also a top pick. Compared to clementines, tangerines are lighter in color and have a more acidic flavor. These are an excellent complement when cooking because of their distinct flavor.
They contain synephrine, a substance used in numerous dietary supplements as a weight reduction aid. However, it is also this component that contributes to its bitter taste.
Tangerines are only accessible from the fall to the spring season, so buying them out of season will result in higher prices. But if you're patient, you'll be able to savor every drop of high-quality juice throughout the season.
The Tangelo, a cross between a Tangerine and a Pomelo, is one of the best oranges for juicing. Due to their loose skin, these oranges are easy to peel. Besides, they're about the size of a human fist, so they're also a good size.
The Tangelo is a fantastic choice for juicing because of its rich and juicy flesh. Tangelos have a nipple-like shape on one end, making them easy to distinguish from other oranges.
These oranges are an excellent alternative if you want a slightly different flavor—they’re tart and tangy. If you want a change of pace, you can even turn them into popsicles!
Of course, the tangelo is also a nutrient-dense fruit. It contains Vitamin A, which helps to improve eyesight, and other nutrients like magnesium and calcium that are helpful for strong teeth and bones.
These oranges also come in two varieties: Orland and Honeybell, differing primarily by the sour flavor they contribute. Unfortunately, this type of orange can only be grown between January and February.
The first Satsuma oranges were grown in Japan. Similar to tangerines and clementines, satsuma oranges are known for their ease of peeling, unusual sweetness, seedlessness, and light, refreshing flavor. They're great for juicing because there is less pulp.
Satsuma oranges enhance digestive health and contain a high amount of soluble fiber, which helps to keep cholesterol levels in check. It also helps with mental health issues.
They are available in supermarkets from October to December. Because its fruiting season is such a short time, it has a limited supply. The good news is, this orange type can be stacked in your refrigerator for up to one month.
Another disadvantage is that you'll need a lot of them to get enough juice. They are also more expensive because they are less available than other oranges.
Hamlin oranges account for up to roughly half of Florida’s orange production. They're a little smaller than the standard Navel, and they'll probably look a little rougher, but they contain a lot of juice.
Hamlin oranges are recognized as juicy and low in acid, making them famous for snacking and creating orange juice. They have a spherical shape with smooth skin and a dull orange to dark yellow tint. The ripe fruit has a small number of seeds.
What Makes a Good Orange Juice?
Juice the Correct Type of Orange
Choosing the proper orange for juicing is critical; otherwise, you might not want to consume the juice you've created. Decide depending on the taste and nutrient value. Do you want the juice to be a little sweet or a little sour? Also, some orange varieties have more nutrients than others, and some are easier to peel and prepare than others.
Before creating a large batch, it's a good idea to start with a tiny batch to test if you like the flavor.
Use a Quality Juicer
You don't need anything fancy, but a good citrus press will come in handy if you plan to drink orange juice often. You'll be able to juice more oranges in one sitting, and the process will be a lot easier. The easier the juicing process is, the more encouraged you'll be to juice oranges at home.
Correctly Store Fresh-squeezed Orange Juice
You must keep your fresh orange juice properly to get the most out of it. Freshly squeezed orange juice can be kept in the refrigerator for three weeks if carefully stored in a suitable container. Orange juice can also be frozen for up to twelve months.
During storage, fresh orange juice separates, so you'll need to mix it up before drinking it.
Health Benefits of Orange Juice
Oranges have several health advantages. One medium cup of orange juice is so high in Vitamin C that it contains nearly 100% of your daily requirement. It also contains Vitamin A, calcium, folate, potassium, and iron, among other vitamins and minerals.
Vitamin C aids in support of our immune systems and the health of our gums, wound healing, and bone growth.
Rich in powerful antioxidants, these components in your orange juice get rid of the cells’ damaging free radicals. This decreases the signs of damage and aging to the body’s healthy tissues.
Some oranges have components that help in weight loss. According to a 2014 study, the water-soluble vitamin in oranges may aid in the prevention and control of obesity. Furthermore, the vitamin has been shown to increase the body's fat-burning mechanism.
Prevention of Kidney Stones
Citrus juices are a rich source of citrate, which helps to decrease the formation of kidney stones.
Support for Bones
Vitamin C is a necessary component for collagen formation in the body. These form the matrix that provides strength for bones.
The potassium content in oranges helps lower the risk of heart disease and strokes and maintains healthy blood pressure.
Factors to Consider when Choosing Oranges
All oranges and other citrus fruits produce the chemical molecule limonin, a phytonutrient that has been found to fight fungal, bacterial, and viral infection and suppress cancer cell proliferation.
However, it is a double-edged sword. It is quite bitter and may ruin your juice. If your oranges are high in LARL, the juice will become more bitter the longer it hangs around.
Studies have shown that the amount of LARL in an orange decreases the longer it sits on the tree, so orange cultivars harvested late in the season will not produce bitter juice.
Though sweet and flavorful, small oranges may not be the best for juicing in large batches. They will take a lot of time to peel and you will need more to get one glass of juice. Because of this, a glass of orange juice will cost more.
The more seeds in an orange, the more difficult it is to juice. To eliminate the bitter taste, deseed the oranges, whether you squeeze them by hand or with a blender.
Every orange has seeds in it, but some have a small number of seeds, making your job easier.
The juicier an orange is, the pulpier it is. Try to weigh oranges in your hands when buying them to juice. The heavier ones have a lot of pulp and will produce a lot of juice. If your oranges turn out to be dry, though, you can make marmalade with them.
An orange’s pith is another thing to consider; it’s the white skin between the peel and the fruit. Although the pith is high in vitamin C and fiber, it can sour your orange juice. Furthermore, a thicker pith means less pulp.
Orange Juice Preparation
Choosing your oranges
Although oranges are available all year in the United States, the quality of oranges will naturally change from season to season.
Look for a deep, rich orange hue appropriate to the sort of orange you are selecting. For example, blood oranges should have a ruby hue to them.
The skin should be smooth and the surface firm, regardless of the sort of orange you choose. When you pick up an orange for juicing, it should be heavy. A heavy orange signifies a lot of juice.
Take a sniff of the oranges near their stem in addition to looking at and feeling them. It should smell sweet, fresh, and zesty. If the orange smells sour, it's past its prime and about to rot.
Making Your Orange Juice
Three medium-sized Valencia oranges or two to three large Navel oranges are needed to make a cup of orange juice. 1 cup equals 8 ounces, and 128 ounces, or 16 cups, equals a gallon. This information is particularly important to those making their orange juice in large batches.
Before squeezing the orange, roll it around on your kitchen counter a few times. The rolling pressure disintegrates the fruit's cell walls, allowing the juice to flow more easily.
Cold fruit provides less juice, so heat the orange slightly before squeezing it. Submerge the orange in hot water for a few seconds or cook it in the microwave for ten seconds.
If you're extracting the juice by hand and don't have an orange squeezer, cut the orange into eight slices instead of two halves. Smaller chunks are considerably easier to squeeze, yielding more juice than larger pieces.
Alternatively, you can peel the fruit and cut off all of the flesh before placing it in a sieve. Then, press the orange juice through the sieve with the back of a tablespoon.
Orange juice contains many vitamins and nutrients and provides many health benefits. However, not all oranges are good for juicing. And, each orange variety also has a distinct taste, with some tasting sweeter or more sour than others.
If you're feeling particularly daring, you can try combining two or more flavors. Mixing tangelos and blood oranges, for example, will give your juice a tart flavor boost, while combining Valencia and clementine kinds will offer a unique balanced flavor.
When buying oranges to juice, make sure to look for a deep hue, feel, smell, and weigh them to get the best oranges possible.