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Pairing the Tart Grapefruit: Your Flavor Pairing Guide

From its humble early morning breakfast offering to its refreshing evening gin cocktail, grapefruit has a versatile range of flavor pairings described below!

Grapefruit is delicious enough to eat with a spoon, but that's just the beginning for this surprisingly versatile citrus fruit

Originally introduced in the 18th century as a cross between a pomelo and an orange, grapefruit offers a bold citrusy flavor with a tart finish. If you're looking for a nutrient-rich breakfast food or a healthy afternoon snack, fresh grapefruit is hard to beat.

Interested in some creative flavor pairings for fresh grapefruit? Keep reading to learn our top favorites.

Grapefruit Fruit Salads

Despite its bold, tart flavor, grapefruit is an incredible addition to a wide variety of fruit salads.

Try pairing grapefruit slices with a medley of strawberries, pineapple, blueberry, and kiwi. You can enjoy it as is, or top with a sweet salad dressing such as poppy seed or raspberry vinaigrette.  

Grapefruit Salad Pairings

Grapefruit might have a bold flavor profile, but it still has a variety of flavor pairings for deliciously creative salads.

Try pairing grapefruit slices with feta cheese, walnuts, and avocado on a bed of fresh greens. Drizzle with olive oil, vinaigrette, or your favorite dressing.

For more salad ideas, check out these tantalizingly delicious Rio Red Grapefruit salad recipes.

Cocktail Flavor Pairings with Grapefruit

Grapefruit might not be the first fruit that comes to mind when considering cocktail mixers, but once you try it you'll be hooked. 

The Classic Tequila Paloma

You might have heard of this one- or, if you haven't, it's a must-try for fans of tequila-based cocktails. Many variations of this recipe feature a grapefruit-flavored soda, but the drink is even better when prepared with fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice and a splash of seltzer.

Try mixing 2 parts tequila or mezcal with 1 part grapefruit juice, a teaspoon of sugar or simple syrup, and a splash of plain seltzer water. Garnish with a lime slice. 

Gin-Based Grapefruit Drinks

Grapefruit mixes incredibly well with the botanical notes of gin, making fresh grapefruit juice one of the best flavor pairings for this spirit. Try splashing some into your gin and tonic, along with a squeeze of lime juice.

For a refreshing frozen drink, try blending ice with fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice, limeade, and gin. Sweeten to taste. Here's more gin grapefruit cocktail recipes to try out!

Vodka-Based Grapefruit Drinks

Fresh grapefruit juice makes a delicious and invigorating mixer for vodka all on its own (called a Greyhound), but that's not the only possibility.

The Salty Dog

This one's a simple variation of the Greyhound. Prepare a Greyhound (vodka and grapefruit juice) with a salted rim. This salty grapefruit flavor pairing is surprisingly tasty! 

The Seabreeze

The Seabreeze is a classic vodka-based cocktail featuring the flavor pairings of grapefruit and cranberry juice. Try mixing 2 parts vodka with 1 part grapefruit juice and 4 parts cranberry juice.

Toppings for Grapefruit

If you're looking for simple flavor pairings that can dress up your morning grapefruit, try a drizzle of honey or maple syrup on top. You can experiment with cinnamon, white sugar, nutmeg, or lime juice.

Or, for something quick, a sprinkle of salt is a good way to neutralize the tart flavor of grapefruit.

Pairing Flavors with Fresh Grapefruit

While it may have a pronounced and tart flavor, there are tons of ways to dress up your grapefruit. Now that you have some ideas for creative flavor pairings, start experimenting today!

For fresh citrus fruit including grapefruit, subscribe to our Citrus Craft Club! Receive curated boxes of fresh citrus, delivered right to your door!

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