In search of R foods? You’ve landed in the right place! Whether you are planning a themed meal, playing trivia, or having a curious mind- I’ve put together a list of 15 real foods that start with R.
Since the key to better health is to simply eat real food, created in nature. I’ve focused on R foods that come from nature. Foods from nature are mostly unprocessed and rich in nutrients. They can be fruits, vegetables, grains, meats, and dairy- all having been minimally processed. Although real food is considered to be a single ingredient, you can still put together a bunch of single ingredients to make a great dish or table spread with healthy, real foods that start with R.
Foods That Start With R
Radicchio is a salad green that has been popular in Italy for centuries and just recently begun to gain notice in the U.S. Radicchio goes well in salads as well as being cooked; due to its texture being firm but tender. Radicchio ranges in color from light green to deep purple and can look like a head of cabbage or as hearts of romaine lettuce. Radicchio is rich in folate and a source of vitamin E.
A radish is a root vegetable, it is similar in appearance to that of beets or turnips. The most common radishes sold in supermarkets are red and round. Radishes are cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli and cauliflower. Cruciferous vegetables are full of nutrients, particularly phytonutrients; which are plant-based nutrients shown to potential in lowering inflammation and helping to reduce the risk of cancer. Radishes are commonly eaten raw or as a cooked vegetable, they may also be found in soups.
Raisins are a popular dried fruit among both children and adults. They are found in a variety of colors, including green, yellow, brown, black, blue, and even purple! Raisins come from lying grapes in the sun to dry and shrivel up, although some grapes are now dried in ovens or dehydrators these days. Raisins are a concentrated source of nutrients and have a good amount of soluble and insoluble fiber, but they are high in natural sugar. Raisins pair well with citrus fruits due to the nonheme iron found in them.
Rambutan is a fruit native to southeast Asia and very popular throughout many Asian counties. Now grown in Central America, it has found its way into the US and is even found in some common supermarkets, which is why I decided to include it. Rambutan is a very unique looking fruit. Each fruit is a red and green hairy shell about the size of a golf ball. In order to access the fruit, you have to twist the shell or cut it at its seam. What’s found on the inside is a translucent, white fleshy fruit that tastes sweet and creamy with a seed in its middle. You have to break open the seam of the shell in order to access the sweet fruit on the inside. Like many fruits the rambutan is rich in nutrients and antioxidants; particularly fiber, vitamin C, and copper. If you are looking for a unique and unexpected “R food” for hosting, rambutan is certainly a fun and different fruit.
Raspberries are a small, delicate, reddish-pink fruit. Packed full of fiber and vitamin C, they are both tart and sweet; satisfying to many with a sweet tooth. The most common raspberries cultivated are the red ones, there are a few other varieties such as black, purple, and golden raspberries. Raspberries have a short life once picked, so it’s best to eat them up after buying from the market or opting for frozen ones instead.
6. Red Bananas
Red bananas are native to Southeast Asia, but can be found in some supermarkets in the U.S. While they have similarities the yellow banana in taste, shape, and size; red bananas are still unique in themselves. Some may describe the taste as similar to a yellow banana that has hidden blends of raspberry sweetness. Due to their reddish peel, red bananas contain carotenoids, as the orange in carrots does! Red bananas are rich in the carotenoids lutein and beta carotene that help to support eye health. They are also rich in antioxidants, which support cellular health. Red bananas area as versatile food as yellow bananas are, you can peel them back for a quick snack or add them in baking, cereals, or smoothies.
7. Red Cabbage
Red Cabbage has beautiful deep ruby-red to purple leaves with white veins on the inside of the head. Red cabbage is a cruciferous vegetable (like radishes above), touted for its phytonutrients and folate. Red cabbage is particularly rich in vitamin C, more than other varieties of cabbage. Cabbage goes great in salads as well as being chopped up and added to sauces and other vegetable mixtures. Red cabbage can also be fermented to make sauerkraut, which is incredibly rich in healthy bacteria and other vitamins and minerals.
8. Red Currant Berries
Red currant berries are small, red, pearl-sized berries grown in clusters. They are tart berries, offering hints of raspberry, cranberry, and gooseberry. Red currants are known as a “superfruit” because of their high antioxidants. They are often used in jams to compliment game meat, lamb, or venison as well as baked goods.
Rhubarb is a pink and green-leafed vegetable that looks similar to a celery stalk in size and shape. Although Rhubarb is botanically a vegetable it tends to be used more like a fruit in baking; commonly used in jams, tarts, and pies. Rhubarb stalks are known to taste have a rich, sour, tart flavor. One important thing to know about rhubarb is that only the stalk is edible, the leaves are toxic and should not be ingested.
10. Ribier Grapes
Ribier grapes are one of the best-selling types of grape. They are a large grape, , bluish-black in coloring with a tough bitter skin, yet juicy and sweet on the inside. They can commonly found as table grapes and like other grapes, rich in antioxidants.
Rice is one of the most popular and common grains found throughout the world. Many cultures use rice as the base of their meals, considered a staple food throughout half the world’s population due to its richness in nutrition and low cost. Rice is low in calories and fat, rich in complex carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, and fiber. There are many varieties of rice, many native to different parts of the world. In order to get the most nutrition from rice; look for whole-grain rice, such as brown rice that is unrefined (meaning it’s still a whole grain). White rice is refined meaning that it has been processed to remove the husk, bran, and most of the germ (it is no longer a whole grain or “real food”); the process of refining grains results in loss of vitamins, minerals, and other nutritional values.
12. Romaine Lettuce
Romaine lettuce is a salad green commonly found in caesar salads as well as many other salads. Romaine lettuce is a crisp texture, sold in “hearts” or “heads.” As with other leafy green vegetables, antioxidants are a nutritional benefit of romaine lettuce. In particular, Romaine has darker green leaves; contains more folate, iron, and potassium than many of its lettuce relatives that are lighter green.
Roe is a mass of unfertilized eggs from fish or other marine animals. The most common types of roe come from fish such as salmon, carp tobiko, and trout among others. Roe is known to be rich in omega-3 fats, vitamin D, and vitamin B12. Roe can be found at health food markets, Asian stores as well as sushi restaurants. Many cultures have long since gone to greater lengths in providing roe to enhance fertility and the health of pregnant women.
Rutabagas are a root vegetable, belonging to the cruciferous vegetable family. It is brown and white in coloring, having a similar look to a turnip. Rutabagas have an impressive nutritional profile. They are rich in fiber, promoting healthy digestion. They are great sources of potassium, calcium, magnesium, and antioxidants including Vitamin-C. Rutabagas are a versatile vegetable, mixing well in soups, stews, casseroles, salads, and more. Mashed, boiled, baked, or eaten raw; they can be a great replacement for potatoes and other root vegetables in cooking.
15. Russet Potatoes
Russet Potatoes are often referred to as a classic American food staple; being one of the popular and widely used potatoes. Their high starch levels make them ideal for cooking; they are able to be steamed, baked, fried, mashed, and broiled. They are commonly used in making french fries, mashed potatoes, and baked potatoes. A medium-sized russet potato provides about 5 grams of protein and is a good source of vitamins C, B6, potassium, and manganese. Having brown skin and white flesh, russet potatoes may also be referred to as Idaho or baking potato.
Which one of these foods that start with R will you try today?