Most of us let our taste buds answer what is a fruit and what is a vegetable. A sweet taste defaults to the fruit side. Maybe you only ponder the difference in late fall when delicious pumpkin pies are abundant and you think, “Of course! Pumpkins are fruit. But what about the other squashes related to pumpkins?” Well, they’re all fruit. Cookbooks and groceries only add to the confusion misclassifying not-so-sweet fruits as veggies.
There’s a sure way to know if you’re eating a fruit or vegetable. Seeds. Since a fruit is the ripened ovary of a flower, it contains seeds. If the food you’re snacking on contains seeds, it’s a fruit. So, squash, nuts (a peanut is a legume!), tomatoes, corn and green beans are all fruit. Fruits are nature’s way to bring forth another generation of plant.
Vegetables are part of a plant. If you’re eating roots like potatoes, carrots or turnips, you’re eating vegetables. Leaves like lettuce and spinach are veggies. The stem of celery or the flowers of broccoli and cauliflower are also plant parts classified as vegetables. Sweet potatoes and rhubarb: both veggies…even though they both make spectacularly sweet pies.