Often in our daily lives, the color red signals a stop or a warning. But when it comes to your diet, red foods should not be missed.
Red foods are known to have some amazing health benefits on top of being tasty.
They’re brimming with antioxidants that combat cholesterol, cancer, and heart disease.
They’re pretty darn good for your brain, too.
Of course, this list has a few man-made red foods as well.
I’ve added them simply because they’re red, and they’re delicious. There’s nothing wrong with that!
Below are 30 amazing red foods you have to try!
Whether plain or chocolate-covered, I think it’s safe to say that most people like strawberries.
And for good reason! They’re utterly divine.
Every bite of a strawberry tastes like sweet, sweet summer. They’re fruity, saccharine, bright, and slightly tangy.
Strawberries are definitely one of nature’s candies.
Did I mention that they’re extremely good for you? Because they are.
They’re full of fiber, vitamins, and polyphenols that protect your heart, blood, and brain.
Plus, they contain no fat, sodium, or cholesterol. And they’re very low in calories.
Strawberries are delicious in smoothies, mousses, salads, cakes, jams, and yes, covered in chocolate.
2. Raw Beef
I know, this one might be a little hard to digest (though not literally).
But raw beef has so many benefits that tend to get cooked out.
There’s a reason the raw diet has become so popular in recent years.
The benefits of the food are more bioavailable in raw form.
Raw beef is really high in vitamin B, which is important for healthy brain function.
Many people who eat raw have said they have more mental clarity and overall energy.
Raw beef has also been shown to improve hormone and reproductive health.
As for taste, it’s maybe a bit gamier, but otherwise, it’s not too different from cooked meat.
Don’t get me wrong, I like my steak cooked. But it wouldn’t be a bad idea to eat beef carpaccio more regularly.
If you want to try raw, it’s best to eat small farm, organic, grass-fed beef.
You just can’t beat the goodness of beets!
These lovely, red root veggies taste amazing and they’re pretty powerful, too. Just ask Dwight Schrute.
Beets are bursting with vitamin B9, which is key to proper cell function.
They help maintain a healthy weight and can slow the effects of dementia.
And that’s just a few of the things they can do.
My favorite ways to have beets are oven-roasted with olive oil and seasonings or juiced!
4. Red Cherries
Plan to go hard at the gym? Then, you might want to bring some red cherries as a post-workout snack.
These delicious little guys are power-packed with goodness.
Each individual cherry is loaded with a myriad of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Eating cherries after exercise can help aid muscle recovery and soreness.
Plus, they taste sweet, tart, and totally tantalizing.
Cranberries burst into our lives like the Kool-Aid Man as soon as the holiday season begins.
However, these tart little berries are so beneficial we should enjoy them year-round.
Cranberries do some amazing things to our bodies.
They help strengthen bones and teeth, prevent urinary tract infections, and fight obesity. They also reduce inflammation in the lungs.
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Honestly, cranberries are basically medicine.
6. Blood Oranges
Blood oranges are named for their deep red hue. And I think they’re highly underrated.
Blood oranges taste like a perfect mix of oranges, raspberries, cherries, and grapefruit.
They’re sweet and a little bitter. Every wedge is like a party for your mouth.
And you guessed it! Blood oranges are seriously healthy. They’ve even reached superfood status.
For most people, tomatoes are love ‘em or leave ‘em. I love them!
Regardless of your feelings toward this little fruit, you can’t deny its healthy goodness.
Tomatoes are laden with lycopene, which helps fight cancer and heart disease. They’re also high in vitamin C, K, folate, and potassium.
My favorite way to eat them is raw, with a little olive oil and salt. They’re the perfect snack.
8. Goji Berries
If you have eyes, skin, or an immune system, you should probably eat goji berries.
Goji berries have been used as medicine for generations and it’s no wonder why.
They’re cancer-fighting and immunity-boosting.
They protect the eyes from disease, improve skin health, and stabilize blood sugar. They can even boost your mood and help you sleep.
9. Cashew Apple
If you haven’t heard of the cashew apple, you aren’t alone. It’s actually not an apple, but it’s the fruit that cashews grow from.
They are edible, but they’re extremely perishable. So, it’s unlikely that you’d find them at a store.
However, if you find yourself growing cashews, know that you can eat the apple!
It has a sweet-sour taste, somewhere between bell peppers and mangoes.
They’re delicious raw or cooked. They’re even used to make alcohol.
Pomegranates are as pretty as they are delectable! The sweet, juicy, nutrient-rich, antioxidant-filled seeds look like precious gemstones.
I think they’re pretty perfect as far as fruit goes. I love eating pomegranate seeds in yogurt and smoothie bowls.
Did you know that they’re most likely the fruit from the Biblical Tree of Knowledge?
The very same fruit that Adam and Eve ate to cause the fall of man.
So dare I say that pomegranates are sinfully delicious?
11. Hibiscus Tea
Hibiscus might not be as popular as black tea or matcha but it should be!
This tart tea tastes like cranberries and is full of healthy goodness.
It’s antioxidant-rich, so it can aid weight loss, fight bacteria, and help your liver.
I love it with a splash of lemon juice and a spoonful of honey.
Add some protein to your menu with delicious ham! It’s surprisingly healthy.
In fact, our bodies need nine essential amino acids for growth and repair. Ham contains all nine!
It also has many B vitamins, minerals like zinc, iron, selenium, and healthy fats.
My favorite way to enjoy ham is in hot sandwiches, like Cubanos or Monte Cristos.
I love all condiments but ketchup is classic.
It’s great on or with so many things, from burgers and fries to hot dogs, corn dogs, and more.
It’s pretty low-calorie and it has no added fat, so it’s pretty guilt-free.
Though it doesn’t have a ton of health benefits, it’s high in lycopene. And lycopene is super beneficial to the body!
14. Kidney Beans
Beans, beans, the magical fruit. The more you eat, the more you… lower your risk of heart disease. Woo!
Kidney beans are a fantastic source of fiber, protein, and lots of minerals.
Those proteins include potassium, which is great for heart health.
So, maybe that song was right about having beans at every meal.
15. Red Chili Peppers
They’re red hot, but not in the same way as the Californication singers.
Red chili peppers come in all shapes, sizes, and heat levels.
You have red jalapeños on the lower end. Cayenne pepper takes its place in the middle.
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And taking the top spot with heat like 10,000 suns is the red Carolina Reaper.
They might burn your mouth, but they definitely benefit your body.
They’re loaded with vitamins and minerals, like copper and potassium. They’re delicious!
Just be sure to have a glass (or gallon) of milk somewhere nearby.
16. Marinara Sauce
Marinara sauce is the quintessential tomato sauce.
It’s the sauce that everybody’s mom used on spaghetti when they were growing up. It’s the perfect accompaniment to mozzarella sticks.
Made with tomatoes, oil, herbs, and onions, it’s simple and incredibly delicious. And it’s unbelievably good for you, too!
Every spoonful bursts with vitamins A, E, K, B6, and niacin.
This pretty little fruit comes from China. Its skin is rough, pebbly, and a lovely shade of red.
Inside, lychee looks a bit like a white grape, with a macadamia nut-sized seed.
Typically, you discard the seed and the skin. But the white fruit is absolutely delightful!
Lychee has a light floral, almost pear-like taste and texture.
Plus, they’re chock-full of vitamins, minerals, and flavonoids that protect against cancer!
They also make great wine!
There are several varieties of red apples. Some of the most common include Honeycrisp (arguably the best), Red Delicious, Fuji, and Gala.
They range in size, shape, color, and sweetness. However, every single one shares some pretty amazing health properties.
Apples have been shown to help your heart, lungs, bones, brain, immune system, and gut.
They’re also super advantageous for weight loss.
19. Red Rice
Get to your nearest Asian market and get yourself some red rice. It’s savory, nutty, chewy, and simply wondrous!
Now, I’m not talking about Spanish rice, tomato rice, or dirty rice.
Those get their color from seasonings. This little grain is a natural redhead.
If you’re looking for health benefits, red rice has them! It’s full of fiber, iron, and phosphorus.
Actually, it has 10 times the antioxidants of brown rice.
Red rice can aid weight loss, manage diabetes, improve vision, and fight cancer cells.
Its only real downside is that it takes a lot longer to cook. However, I think it’s worth it for the benefits.
When I was a kid, there was a mulberry tree at my school bus stop.
I loved getting there early, so I could munch on ripe berries while I waited. And that love of mulberries continues!
That’s a good thing because, like most berries, mulberries are so healthy!
No wonder my mom never seemed to mind my snacking and subsequently messy clothes.
Mulberries perish quickly, which is why you won’t see them in stores. However, they make great jams!
21. Red Cabbage
Red cabbage is also known as purple cabbage.
It’s a highly nutritious veggie that should definitely be incorporated into your menu.
It has a peppery, slightly bitter flavor that’s great raw or cooked. Any bitterness mellows out when it’s cooked.
I love red cabbage in coleslaw, salads, and roasted in the oven.
22. Red Wine
A glass a day keeps the doctor away. Okay, that might not be the correct saying, but it’s still kinda true.
Red wine is delicious and it’s actually quite beneficial to your health.
Every sip is brimming with antioxidants that work wonders in your body.
Studies have shown red wine lowers cholesterol, improves heart health, and reduces cancer risks.
Red wine even helps to keep you svelte.
Just be sure to eat some real fruit, too (wink). Like with most things on this list, wine is great in moderation.
Thank an Italian-American for this peppery, fatty, delicious pizza topping.
Needless to say, this is not the healthiest item on this list. But it’s one of the most flavorful!
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But even the quote-unquote bad foods on this list have some benefits.
Pepperoni contains protein and manganese, both of which ensure proper body functions.
And fat is good for your brain.
So go ahead, and eat that greasy, saucy, cheesy slice of pepperoni pizza. I like it best with a salad on the side.
Now, that meal is good for your soul and your body.
24. Red Lentils
There are a few varieties of lentils, but red lentils are probably my favorite.
I love their taste. It’s nutty, earthy, and just a little bit sweet.
I find them particularly delicious in soups.
Red lentils are chock-full of B vitamins. Seriously, just one cup of lentils contains almost your daily recommended amount of B9.
That’s not including all of the other nutrients.
Sausages are universally known and loved. In fact, you’ll find many countries with popular sausage dishes.
And the red ones are known for bold, delicious flavors.
Most types of red sausage get their color from spices.
Those colors vary from light pinkish red (Andouille) to fire engine red (Rød Pølse). The spices also determine its flavor.
Spanish red chorizo will have a bit of smoke from paprika. Mexican red chorizo uses red chiles, which add color and heat.
Lap Cheong is a Cantonese sausage that is sweet and salty.
You could travel the world just by trying different sausages!
Rambutan is like the longer-haired sibling of the lychee. Their outsides might be different, but inside, they definitely share DNA.
They taste very similar, too. So, you know that every bite is sweet, tropical, and absolutely delicious!
And like all tropical fruits, rambutan is super high in vitamin C and antioxidants.
You’ll glow from the inside out!
27. Sriracha Sauce
Add some spice to your life with deliciously hot sriracha sauce!
Sriracha is a sauce made from red chilis, vinegar, garlic, sugar, and salt. And it’s delicious on pretty much anything.
Don’t worry, it’s fairly mild compared to some hot sauces. And it has way more flavor and a lot less vinegar taste.
It’s fabulous on ramen, burritos, chicken, and much more.
But my favorite way to have it is mixed with mayo, especially when served with fried pickles.
28. Red Potatoes
Red potatoes are probably my favorite kind of potato, especially when roasted with olive oil and seasonings.
Red potatoes have thin skin that crisps really nicely.
And the insides get so soft and airy. Red potatoes are slightly sweeter than their yellow friends, but still totally savory.
Oh, and those skins? You definitely want to keep them because they are loaded with health benefits. And so is the rest of the potato.
To me, watermelon is the epitome of summer. And clearly, people love it.
Watermelon is iconic in popular culture from home decor to nail designs, stationary, CoComelon, and more!
Plus, ripe watermelon bursts with sweet, juicy flesh that tastes like heaven. And you can eat a ton of it without guilt.
Because watermelon is both delicious AND nutritious.
It’s low-calorie and rich in vitamins A, C, iron, potassium, and important amino acids.
It can reduce blood sugar and pressure levels, strengthen bones, and clear kidneys.
Watermelon has a high water content, so it hydrates you from the inside out.
These red stone fruits are just plum good!
And like apples, plums come in various cultivars, many of which are red. Well, on the outside at least.
Typically, plums are yellow inside. But no matter, you still get all the goodness its red skin offers.
Plums are full of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
They benefit your bones, immune system, and your digestion.
And they taste really, really wonderful!