Having trouble knowing exactly when you have ripe pluots or plumcots in your fruit drawer? Follow our tips below to help you know when the timing is perfect for the best flavor.
It sure is disappointing to bite into a piece of fruit only to discover that it's not ripe at all.
Not all fruits can be taken home from the store and eaten immediately. It's key to know when the right time to enjoy that fruit is. Pluots or plumcots are one that people struggle with. It can be difficult to know when they are ready.
Fortunately you are here now and we can give you some pointers. And when we say ripen we are talking about the point at which the fruit has aged off the tree to when it will have a sweet flavor. Before considered ripe, the fruit won't taste sweet.
❓ How to Tell When Ripe
Pluots or plumcots are a plum-apricot hybrid fruit that combine traits of both plums and apricots (sometimes even cherries, peaches, or nectarines!). When it comes to ripeness we want to think more plum than apricot.
Both pluots and plumcot are names used in marketing. I originally thought plumcot would be a 50/50 mix of plum and apricot but I think that term has gotten a little blurred over the years. Often the terms are used interchangeably. I tend to say pluot more often, it's the term invented by renowned stone fruit breed, Floyd Zaiger.
💡 Top Tip - Gently feel the top of the fruit. It should give a little bit to very gentle pressure.
The rest of the fruit may feel firm still but the pluot should be ready to eat. You may see a bit of wrinkling on top. The fruit is still good as long as it appear firm around most of the fruit.
You can take color ques from the fruit as well. Pluots that have a rich color tend to be more ripe. Color only shouldn't be the determination, but it helps. When I buy yellow skinned pluot varieties, they tend to turn more golden color as they ripen.
If the pluot gets really soft, it feels more like water balloon, than it's overripe. It will be sweet and juicy but hard to eat without making a huge mess. And the texture will be really soft that it will explode like a balloon in your mouth. They are still edible at this point and maybe some like them when they are this soft. I don't like eating them out of hand at this point however they could still be used in desserts or just drip that juice over some vanilla bean ice cream.
📋 Ripen by Variety
You also need to keep in mind that the variety of pluot matters.
- Some are going to be eaten more firm than others. The Flavor Grenade pluot is the perfect example. It doesn't really give to gentle pressure, it turns color (going from green to yellow & red) and gets some wrinkles on top. It is eaten more crunchy but still perfectly sweet.
- Dinosaur Egg or Dapple Dandy pluots should just give to gentle pressure. Pluots that have a similar shape to these types tend to ripen the same way.
- Plumogranate pluots turn a dark purple, almost black color. These ones will get some wrinkles on top and I think they taste best at that point.
⌚ How Long Do They Take to Ripen
When you buy pluots at the store, how long does it normally take to have ripe fruit? Rarely do I get them at the store when they are ready to eat. Be ready to wait 2-3 days on average in my experience but it could be sooner or later as well. It depends a lot on how long the fruit sat on the grocery store display.
🏆 Best Way to Ripen
Never but the fruit in the fridge before it's soft. They won't ripen that way. Instead keep them at room temperature in a dry, dark place. If you wish to speed up the process, seal them in a brown paper bag. To even further that process you can add in a single banana. The gas that the bananas naturally gives off will help ripen the pluots.
👎 How to Tell if Bad
If you set any moldy spots then I would throw the whole fruit out. As I said above even if the fruit is as soft as a water balloon it can still be eaten just as long as it isn't moldy.
Never leave the pluots in the plastic bag from the grocery store. This could trap moisture next to the fruit which would cause it to go bad prematurely.
RELATED - Did you know that August is peak season for pluots? Want to learn more about when they are available? Check out my post on when pluots are in season.
🍎 More Fruit Reading
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