Be a peach and don’t roll your eyes as we start this brief intro with a predictable pun.
These fuzzy friends are some of our favorite types of fruits – good in everything from pies to preservatives to plucked directly from the tree.
And since we can never seem to get enough of a good thing, there are plenty of types of peaches to go around – which, as far as we’re concerned, is just peachy keen! (Okay, you can maybe roll your eyes at that one.)
There are hundreds of types of peaches around the world – so many, in fact, that we don’t even call them all peaches. (More on that later.)
The species, officially known as persica, got its scientific name from Persia, where the fruit was widely cultivated before breaking into Europe, but it got its official start in China, where the peach was even more widely revered.
The Asian nation considered peaches divine, and it was believed that eating enough of the fruit could keep one young forever.
Luckily for us, there are literally hundreds of delicious ways to test that theory. Though, in order to write them all out in a list, we would almost have to stay young forever!
Instead, we’ve broken down the types of peaches into a few broad categories, and listed some of the most popular types of peaches to pine over.
Peaches may be all warm and fuzzy on the outside, but it’s what’s on the inside that really counts.
Beneath their sweet exterior, peaches reveal their true stony characters: the large, dense seed at the center of the fruit that cautious snackers have long learned to cut or bite around.
But not all stones are created equal.
Different types of peaches are actually broadly categorized by the characteristics of their pits, including:
Another way to tell a peach apart is by the color of its flesh, with different types of peaches revealing not just different interior hues, but all the different characteristics that go with them.
Most likely the original – and still most popular type of peach – these cultivars can range from light yellow to deep, red-streaked orange on the inside, and carry a juicy but particularly tangy bite, thanks to a higher acidity count.
Some of the most famous types of yellow peaches include:
The same as yellow peaches in almost every way, besides their namesake colored-flesh, these types of peaches are usually descendants of the original Asian varietals.
Many people also swear these cultivars taste sweeter than their yellow cousins. We’re never ones to choose sides, but you can give some of these a try to see what you think:
When it comes to categorizing peaches, there’s a point where it’s time to separate the boys from the men—or at least, the fruits still rocking peach fuzz from the ones who’ve learned how to shave.
Smooth-skinned (or, in other words, fuzz-free) peaches also exist.
It’s just one small variation in the genetic code that causes these peach varietals to go bare-faced into the world. Otherwise, they’re categorized the same way as other different types of peaches, coming in both freestone and clingstone varieties and cultivars with both yellow and white flesh.
These mysterious types of peaches are so grown up, they’ve chosen to go by another name all together: Nectarines.
That’s right, the notorious “peaches vs. nectarines” debate is actually more like “peaches vs. a slightly genetically modified peach.” Though, that’s not quite as catchy.
Proving that, just like a rose, a peach, by any other name, would be as sweet.