Fruits Like Mangosteen (10 Substitutes That Look And Taste Similar)

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Fruits like mangosteen

Looking for fruit like mangosteens? If you’ve ever wondered what fruits look and taste similar to mangosteen, you’ve come to the right place. This so-called “ Queen of Fruits” was allegedly revered by Queen Victoria in the 18th century, and it’s said that she even promised knighthood to anyone who could deliver it to her. 

But if you don’t have any on hand, you’ll love this list of substitutes that look and taste similar:

What is Mangosteen?

Not many people have been lucky enough to taste the mangosteen. That’s because this fruit thrives in a Southeast Asian climate which is difficult to replicate outside of the region. Because the fruit also has a very short shelf life, it’s also challenging to find many grocery stores that will pay to import it to the USA using refrigerated air transport. This makes it a rare fruit. It also has an unusual appearance. It’s a small round fruit that usually is sold with its stem still attached to it. Many people find the taste of the mangosteen to be complex and challenging to describe. Despite this, here are a few fruits that people have said taste like mangosteen. 

List of Fruits like Mangosteen


Lychees in bowl

When you open up the mangosteen it’s inside it pale and almost grey in color. It also has a round shape. This has led many people to say that it looks a little like a lychee and some people believe it tastes like it too. Ask your neighborhood grocer if they can point you in the direction of this fruit, which is also from Asia.. Each one is bite sized and contains a large smooth pit which you can throw away. It’s also easy to peel using your fingers. Most people enjoy eating lychees as a snack. Others remove the flesh and juice it to make a refreshing drink. 


Strawberries spilled from basket

Strawberries are instantly recognisable by their red surface that’s dotted with tiny seeds, and their green cap of leaves. Although it was first cultivated in France it’s now easy to access around the world. The taste of a strawberry is sweet but also tart, which is how it’s similar to the mangosteen. You can enjoy this fruit in many ways and in both sweet and savory dishes. Many people enjoy it in salads with leafy greens and a splash of balsamic vinegar. You can also create a refreshing strawberry daiquiri by freezing and blending the fruit with some ice, rum and lime juice.


Cavendish bananas

The mangosteen has a creamy element to its taste that brings to mind the taste of bananas. This oblong yellow fruit has a delicate flavor that’s enjoyed by children and adults alike. As they come in a handy peel that keeps their inner fruit protected and have no visible seeds, they’re also great for a mobile snack when you’re on the go. Vegans love bananas, as when frozen and blended their texture and taste is similar to dairy rich vanilla ice cream. It is also a staple in many popular dessert bakes enjoyed around the world, and it is often paired with chocolate and peanut butter. 


Vanilla orchid

Yes, vanilla is a spice — but it’s classic flavor features prominently in the mangosteen. This small dark pod contains fragrant seeds which are sold as pods. A more affordable but artificial version is derived from certain types of orchids as well as wood lignin. It’s comforting scent and taste make it a popular flavor for everything from cakes to ice cream. Cultivated primarily in Madagascar and Indonesia, each seed must be carefully cultivated and harvested by hand, making it a labor intensive and therefore expensive spice. If you can get your hands on real vanilla pods, bury them in a jar of quality sugar to create vanilla sugar, which can be added to hot drinks and used for baking. 


Rambutan peeled

The rambutan doesn’t taste exactly like the mangosteen, but it’s an equally exotic fruit that also hails from Southeast Asia that thrives in tropical climates. It’s a strange looking fruit as its gold ball sized and covered in red hair, which can be removed to reveal a green casing which contains lychee-like flesh. It also has the same creamy and sweet taste with a seed in its middle. It’s a rare fruit even in its country of origin as the plant takes a long time to produce fruit and it only produces a small handful of fruit every season. If you can get hold of it, you’ll be lucky indeed.

Dragon Fruit

Dragon fruit sliced open

Dragon fruits are beautiful inside and out, which is why they often appear in fruit salads and as well as eye-catching instagram posts. Encased with bright pink layers shaped like flames, they can be cut open easily to reveal bright white flesh dotted with tiny black seeds, although some have deep red flesh too. They have a light and refreshing taste that pairs well with most fruits, which is why they often are combined with other fruits. Although it’s sweet it isn’t very high in sugar, making it a healthy snacking option. Although you can eat it alone, some people use it to make tea.


Starfruit sliced

Like its name suggests, this fruit is oblong and slim, and when cut into slices produces star shaped fruits. It hails from Southeast Asia, like the mangosteen, but tastes different to it. Its flesh is firm and crunchy, with a mild sweetness that resembles that of a grape. However, it has a sourness that keeps it from being too sugary. Because of its balance of flavors it’s often used to prepare fish dishes. However, its flesh can be so acidic that it’s also used to clean rust off pots and other dishes.

Snake Fruit


This fruit’s name is apt, as it’s flesh does appear to have scales like a snake. However this harsh exterior doesn’t match its insides, which can often be sugar sweet while also possessing a strong tang and lots of juice. It’s grown in Southeast Asia on certain palm trees and is a popular snack, where it’s doused with sugar and salt before being served to eat. Because it has similar qualities to the pineapple, eating it can leave your tongue feeling tingly.


Sapodilla on basket

If there’s any fruit that tastes like a dessert, it would be this one. The sapodilla is a small, round fruit with a fuzzy brown skin which softens when ripe and is filled with dark seeds. It can be eaten with a spoon, provided you remove its seeds which stick in your throat. Those who have eaten it say that it tastes like caramel, while others feel it tastes like brown sugar or cotton candy. This fruit (which is technically a berry) is created when its tree’s flowers mature once or twice a year.


Passionfruit cut open

If you haven’t encountered a passionfruit before, you might wonder if it’s edible in the first place. This fruit grows on climbing vines and has a very distinct and pleasant smell. It has a hard round skin which can weigh very little, leading you to believe there’s nothing inside. However, open them up and you will find several edible seeds with a sharp tasting covering that can be scooped out and eaten as a pulp. It’s often made into jam or used as a topping for fruit desserts. 

Wrap Up

As you can see, the mangosteen is an unusual fruit that has a multifaceted taste. While you might not get any fruit that tastes exactly like it, the ones listed above each taste like elements of it, and will help you appreciate its flavour more — even if you tasted them dozens of times before.