The Q&A Archives: Tomatoes: Vegetables or fruits?

Question: We are confused here about the definition of a fruit. I was reading from a Burpee magazine and it referred to a tomato as a fruit. Did I misread this?I thought the tomato was a veggie.

Answer: Botanically speaking, a fruit is defined as a mature ovary -- a protective container in which seeds are nurtured. Vegetable has a broader definition; typically, it can be described as an herbaceous cultivated plant used for food. You can see from the description that a tomato, then, would fall into the category of fruit. (Have you ever had tomato cake -- made with tomato juice?)

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