Common Myths About Cucumbers
Cucumbers are one of our favorite fresh superfoods, but they are also a food that has many myths floating around about it that people believe are facts. From peeling off a Cucumber’s skin to classifying it as a vegetable, let’s debunk some of the most common myths about Cucumbers!
Here are some of the most common myths we often hear from our fans about Cucumbers:
- Mini Cucumbers are Long English Cucumbers picked early
- You should peel your Cucumbers before eating them
- Cucumbers are vegetables
- Cucumbers don’t need to be wrapped
It’s time to debunk these myths and get the facts straight about this fresh food!
Mini Cucumbers vs. Long English Cucumbers
Myth: Mini Cucumbers are Long English Cucumbers picked early.
When someone sees a pack of Mini Cucumbers in the produce department, there’s a chance they may think those Cucumbers were picked before they could grow to their full size. But while Mini Cucumbers do look like small versions of the classic Long English Cucumber, they are in fact an entirely different variety of Cucumber.
Although they are unique seed varieties, our Long English Cucumbers and Mini Cucumbers do grow very similarly to one another. The biggest difference between them is the speed at which they grow: Mini Cucumbers grow so fast that, inside our greenhouse farms, we need to pick them twice a day every day to keep up, while Long English Cucumbers are only picked once every day (which is still a lot).
Since they come in different sizes, these Cucumbers are also best suited for different dishes. Long English Cucumbers are delicious in salads or on sandwiches, while Mini Cucumbers make delicious additions to drinks or smoothies. But both these types of Cucumbers are perfect for snacking!
Discover more about different types of Cucumbers in our Veggie Lover’s Guide to Cucumbers!
Myth: You should peel your Cucumbers before eating them.
Have you ever been told that you need to peel off a Cucumber’s skin before eating it? While many people believe that you need to remove the outer skin of a Cucumber when preparing them for salads or snacks, the fact is that it’s healthiest to leave the skin on your Cucumber.
The skin of a Cucumber is where most of this superfood’s vitamins and nutrients are stored. Cucumbers are high in vitamin K, an essential vitamin for the blood-clotting process. Cucumbers also have a healthy dose of vitamin A and vitamin C, which help maintain healthy skin, vision, neurological function, and bone health.
Cucumbers also contain a healthy dose of many nutrients, including phosphorus, magnesium, calcium, and potassium. These four nutrients are essential for health and wellness, including bone health, a functioning immune system, and a strong heart.
The only time when you would want to peel off a Cucumber’s skin is when it has a wax coating on it. This wax coating is primarily found on Cucumbers grown in a field, so rest assured that you can still enjoy your greenhouse-grown Cucumbers with skin!
So, if you peel off the skin of your Cucumbers, there’s a good chance you’ll be missing out on many of its great health benefits. Just make sure you wash your Cucumbers thoroughly with cold water when enjoying them with the skin on.
Fruit or Vegetable?
Myth: Cucumbers are vegetables.
This is the age-old question, not just for Cucumbers, but for Tomatoes and Peppers, too—are they fruits or vegetables? While many people refer to Cucumbers as vegetables because they are often eaten alongside other fresh veggies like carrots, celery, and broccoli, Cucumbers are technically fruits.
A common misconception about fruits is that they only grow on trees, or that fruits can be eaten as desserts. That’s why, when we think of fruit, apples, bananas, and oranges are the first that come to mind. But a fruit is any produce item that has seeds and that develops from a flower. Since our Cucumbers have seeds and start out as a bright yellow flower before maturing into a Cucumber, they are considered fruits (and the same goes for Tomatoes and Peppers)!
Myth: Cucumbers don’t need to be wrapped.
It’s a common belief that shrink wrapping Cucumbers is unnecessary, but what most people don’t think about is the fact that both Long English Cucumbers and Mini Cucumbers have thin skin and a high water content. That’s why you will almost always see Cucumbers packaged in shrink wrap at the store: it is an essential part of extending a Cucumber’s shelf life and protecting it from injury. If you do see unwrapped Cucumbers at the store, they may also be covered in a wax coating that can help prolong shelf-life, as well.
However, we also know that the plastic shrink wrap that these Cucumbers are traditionally wrapped in usually ends up in a landfill. So, to keep both our products and the planet protected, Nature Fresh Farms recently launched our 100% home compostable Cucumber wrap! Made from a starch-based material and printed with compostable ink, this eco-friendly wrap fully breaks down in a home compost bin without leaving behind any microplastics–all while keeping our Cucumbers crisp and protected.
Cucumbers should be wrapped to extend their shelf-life and keep them protected as they travel through the supply chain, but there are better ways to do this that also keep our planet top of mind!
More Myths to Debunk
Now that we’ve debunked some of the most common Cucumber myths, why not get all the facts on Tomatoes and Peppers, too? Check out the most common myths we’ve debunked for Tomatoes and Peppers below.