Difference between oranges and blood oranges

So, blood oranges. What’s up with that?

two blood oranges with garnish leaves in between


  • Orange: a globose, reddish-yellow, bitter or sweet, edible citrus fruit.
  • Blood orange: any of various sweet oranges having a dark-red pulp.

Oranges are essentially divided into three groups: sweet oranges, bitter oranges, and mandarins.

Mandarins are the smaller, flatter looking oranges that encompass many subcategories of their own, including clementines. Bitter oranges are used for marmalade and things of that nature. 

Oranges as we know them – common oranges – are sweet, and so are blood oranges.

Common oranges:

  • Include varieties like Valencia and navel.
  • Are orange on the outside and on the inside.
  • Offer a wider range of sizes than blood oranges.
  • Are sweet and acidic.

Blood oranges:

  • Include varieties like Moro and Sanguinelli.
  • Are orange on the outside and a pink, red, or purple color on the inside.
  • Are slightly smaller than the largest common oranges.
  • Are sweeter and less acidic than common oranges, with a faint raspberry or blackberry flavor.

Blood oranges get their unique color from a pigment called anthocyanin, which gives color to many other fruits and vegetables.

There are a ton of fun blood orange recipes, including very aesthetically pleasing cocktails.