Navel VS Blood Orange Fruit: What Are The Differences?

While there are a wide variety of oranges available, find out why the navel orange and blood orange fruit are two of the most interesting in the citrus family.

Everyone knows that eating more fruits and vegetables is the key to a healthy diet. But do you know which citrus fruit is best for you? If you don't know your navel orange from your blood orange fruit then you've come to the right place.

We'll take you through some of the key differences between these two citrus family fruits. Some come with us and vitamin C what we have to offer!


The name alone should be a giveaway, but the blood orange fruit has a strikingly different coloration than the navel orange. In fact, it is the rich, ruby coloring that gives the blood orange its name.

The navel orange is more classically orange, both in its peel and in the juicy fruit within. The blood orange, by contrast, while still retaining its orange peel, hides a deep blood-red fruit. But does the rich pigmentation provide any additional nutritional benefit?

Nutritional Content

As it turns out, yes...

There isn't much of a difference in the calories and vitamin levels between the two types of oranges. Both navel orange and blood orange fruits offer upwards of 50mg of vitamin C. This is almost 100% of the RDA of vitamin C for a healthy adult.

The difference comes in the level of antioxidants present in the blood orange fruit. The red pigmentation unique to the blood orange is a result of increased levels of anthocyanins. This is a natural antioxidant found in lesser amounts in all oranges.

According to the Oxford Academic, a moderate intake of anthocyanins can result in reduced risk of cardiovascular diseases and conditions like type-2 diabetes. It is also associated with better weight maintenance and neuroprotection. It might be time to switch to blood oranges?


Everyone is familiar with the sweet smell of an orange. But it may surprise you to know that there is a distinct difference between the smell of a navel orange and a blood orange.

The blood orange is considered to be the most aromatic orange in the family. Moreso, even, than the naval orange. It is this distinct smell, combined with the unique coloration that sets blood oranges apart from the rest of the citrus family.


Oranges might be pretty to look at, but arguably the most important factor is the taste.

The navel orange, being the most common grocery store fruit in the orange family has a taste most of us are familiar with. Navel oranges are juicy yet bitter, more so than other oranges in the citrus family.

A blood orange, by contrast, has a more tart and sweet flavor. The blood orange fruit is also considerably more juicy than the navel orange. For that reason, you'll need to be careful when biting into it, lest that sweet nectar is spilled.

Blood Orange Fruit - The Citrus Apex?

It's clear that, while both members of the same family, there are some key differences between the navel orange and the blood orange fruit. At the end of the day, regardless of looks or nutritional value, it almost always comes down to personal taste.

However, if you're looking for a juicier, less bitter, more nutritional alternative to the conventional orange, perhaps it's time to consider switching to the blood orange?

If you're interested in discovering more great citrus articles then we've got you covered on our Citrus Simplified blog.

At US Citrus, we also offer leading citrus fruits, the perfect gift for a loved one.

Try our seasonal citrus box while its available...the Craft Citrus Club!

Our Rio box is a 15-lb curated box of our fresh-harvested citrus from South Texas. The fruit is NOT gassed, rather it is tree-ripened. Our season runs from Nov-May for  oranges, grapefruit and mandarins.

Our Grande box is a 30-lb box of either fresh-harvested Rio Red Grapefruit or Sweet Oranges from South Texas.

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