Kinkan Orange Health Benefits10

Citrus fruits like lemons and oranges are known the world over for their sour taste and enormous health benefits. However, there is one delicious and nutritious sour fruit you’ve probably never heard of before: Kinkan Orange .

This little orange usually has a yellowish or orange hue, resembling small, oval oranges, with a sweet but spicy flavor and a hint of bitterness. What differentiates this fruit from citrus, however, is the fact that both the skin and the zest are sweet and can be eaten. The husk, meat and even seeds are edible, although some people prefer to remove them.

When opening a kinkan, you may notice that there are small juicy hoop-like segments that stick to each other and to the bark.

Kinkan orange, related to harvesting, has San José, Florida, considered the “Capitol of Kinkan” since 1895. This is because many varieties of this fruit flourish in the area.


Kinkan orange, also known as Japanese orange, has the scientific name of Fortunella margarita, classified as Citrus japônica. The kinkan’s specific title is derived from the name of Robert Fortune, a Scottish horticulturist.

He was responsible for bringing the fruit from China to Europe in the mid-19th century. Although Fortunella margarita is the best known type of kinkan orange, other varieties are grown, such as:

  • Marumi kinkan (Fortunella japonica): round fruit with a distinct sweet and pleasant taste;
  • Meiwa kinkan (Fortunella crassifolia): This type of kinkan is also small, but larger than other varieties. It is still popular in Japan as “ninpo” or “neiha kinkan”;
  • Hong Kong kinkan (Fortunella hindsii): these are the smallest varieties of kinkan;

Kinkan oranges arise from saplings that grow on small, shrubby and compact, small-sized evergreen trees, reaching 2 to 3 meters in height.

The tree’s branches are pale green and become drooping when young, but they can also be thorny. Finally, the trees display sweet, fragrant, small white flowers with dark green leaves.

The fruit is known to be native to Southeast China, although it can also be found in the following areas: North and South Korea, South Pakistan, Taiwan, Middle East, Japan, USA, particularly in Florida, Louisiana, Alabama and California.


Proportional to 100 grams of kinkan orange.

  • Calories – 71 kcal
  • Carbohydrates – 15.9 g
  • Sugar – 9.36 g
  • Proteins – 1.88 g
  • Fats – 0.86 g
  • Saturated Fat – 0.103 g
  • Monounsaturated Fat – 0.154 g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat – 0.171 g
  • Cholesterol – 0 mg
  • Fibers – 6.5 g
  • Sodium – 10 mg
  • Potassium – 186 mg


Kinkan orange has the benefits of low calorie, where for every 100 grams of fresh kinkans there are only 71 calories. These fruits are also rich in nutrients such as:

  • Antioxidant vitamins (A, C and E);
  • B-complex vitamins (thiamine, niacin, pyridoxine, folate and pantothenic acid);
  • Flavonoid antioxidants such as carotenes, lutein, zeaxanthin and tannins;
  • Minerals such as calcium, copper, potassium, manganese, iron, selenium and zinc;

Eating the peel of the fruit is highly recommended, as it is particularly rich in antioxidants and fiber, as well as essential oils such as limonene, pinene, a-bergamothene, caryophyllene, a-humulene and a-muurolene. All of these nutrients play a vital role in developing some of the health benefits that kinkan oranges have in preventing disease, such as:

  • Assists in collagen synthesis and wound healing;
  • It has a role in antiviral and anticancer activities;
  • Helps to prevent neurodegenerative diseases, arthritis and diabetes;
  • Helps with the absorption of iron from food sources;
  • Regulates digestive health;
  • Helps with the elimination of constipation, excess gas, bloating and cramps;
  • Eliminates and neutralizes free radicals from the body;
  • Functions as cofactors to metabolize carbohydrates, proteins and fats;
  • Boosts the immune system;
  • Assists in stimulating new cell growth;
  • Helps protect the body against invaders, infections, bacteria and fungi;
  • Helps optimize insulin and glucose balance in the body;
  • Keeps hair and teeth strong;
  • Increases energy levels;
  • Improves skin health;
  • Builds strong bones;


Kinkan salad with endive

Preparation time – 15 minutes.

Yield – 4 servings.

Ingredients :

4 Belgian endives;

10 sprigs of parsley;

10 sprigs of mint;

10 kinkan oranges;

2 tablespoons of lemon juice;

1½ tablespoon of oil;

¼ to ½ teaspoon of salt;

Preparation mode:

  1. Discard the ends of the endive, cutting the rest into pieces and place them in a salad bowl.
  2. Compress the leaves of the parsley and mint sprigs. Tear them up into smaller pieces and add them to the endive.
  3. Cut the kinkans into quarters and add them to the salad.
  4. In a small bowl, beat together lemon juice, oil and salt. Drizzle this simple dressing over the salad. Stir the container to cover everything evenly with the sauce. Serve immediately.

To buy and enjoy the best fruit, make sure you do it during the summer, especially from November to June, as kinkan oranges are well priced during this time, as well as being ready. It is recommended to choose small, firm fruits with a soft shine and no discoloration.

Ideally, your rods should still be attached. Avoid buying kinkans that are overripe or green, with shallow cuts, bruises, or damage.

For kinkan oranges to last you need to know how to take care of them. Store fruits in the refrigerator in a perforated bag, where they can last up to two weeks. There is also the possibility of storing kinkans in an area at room temperature for about three to four days.

When fruits are to be used, wash and dry them gently using a soft cloth or cloth. Remove the stem and chop or cut them.

There is also the alternative of peeling the fruit, however it can be tricky since the peel is thin. As a result, the skin is usually left on, as it can provide a contrasting flavor to meat that is slightly sour.

The kinkan orange in juice is extremely delicious when eaten, although it can be used as an ingredient for other dishes as well:

  • Poultry stuffing;
  • Fruit salads;
  • Complement dishes such as duck and other fatty meats;
  • dessert topping;
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Robert Asprin, APD is a non-dieting Accredited Practicing Dietitian passionate about inspiring positive changes in eating and lifestyle behaviors to help improve health while nurturing relationships with food and body.

Robert Asprin

Robert Asprin, APD is a non-dieting Accredited Practicing Dietitian passionate about inspiring positive changes in eating and lifestyle behaviors to help improve health while nurturing relationships with food and body.

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