Most people would agree that the durian is one unique looking fruit.
With it’s unforgiving exterior spikes on the outside, pungent aromatic presence, and soft unrivaled taste on the inside, it is definitely one special fruit that has garnered fierce fans from all over the world.
Well… I guess with such tempting and delectable flesh inside, one would find it totally justifiable to have a killer protective shell.
In fact, quite a few fruits have copied this natural strategy of protecting it’s seeds like the durian. And they can look quite similar to the king of fruits itself.
While most Asians should be able to immediately identify a real durian from a basket of fruits that pretend to be durian, westerners who don’t come across durians as often can often make the mistake of thinking another fruit or vegetable is durian.
Celebrities who have travelled all over the world are no exception, as can be seen when Martha Steward ignited an uproar when she posted a picture of a jackfruit claiming that it’s a durian in a tweet. But to be fair, it must have been posted by a social media manager for her account rather than Martha herself.
The jackfruit does have an uncanny look that resembles a durian and we start of this list of similar looking fruits with it.
The jackfruit don’t just have visual similarities with the durian from the outside, it’s yellow fruitlets on the inside also looks eerily similar to durian fruitlets.
They consist of pulps of flesh wrapped around seeds that also look like those of a durian.
So mistaken identity is very understandable, especially for those from the western world such as America and Europe.
If you are travelling in Asia and wants to buy a durian, just don’t buy a jackfruit instead as they only cost a fraction of durians.
Unscrupulous fruit sellers can take advantage of gullible tourists by passing off jackfruits as durians.
For what it’s worth, while photos of jacfruits and durians can look pretty similar, one would be able to observe their clear physical differences when seeing the real thing side-by-side.
The soursop is another green fruit that is round-to-oval shaped with spikes on the exterior. It is called durian belanda in some parts of the world.
They can grow to a considerable size too.
It has an unusually texture and is mostly used as an ingredient for soft drinks, smoothies and fruit mixes.
While it shares various similar features with durians, one should be able to tell it apart from even jackfruits.
Saying that, I have seen some of these fruits looking too freakishly similar to durians before.
3) Thorn melon (or horned melon)
The thorn melon can share the same attributes as durians. But it should be much more simple to differentiate it from the king of fruits compared to jackfruits.
At some angles, they look like one of those weird looking caterpillars that carry spikes on their backs.
Also known as kiwano, the fruit is orange when ripe and green before that.
So it is most vulnerable to mistaken identity when it is still green.
The breadfruit does have spikes, but the spikes are much smaller in size and don’t look as deadly as durians. They are also more uniform throughout the whole fruit’s exterior.
It can be easily be mistaken for durians and jackfruits if one has not seen these fruits in real life before.
Anyway, any doubts should be conclusively answered once you cut open the fruit.
The internals just don’t have the same inner beauty of durians.
5) Spiny cucumber
When we think about cucumbers, most would probably think about the vegetable’s elongated shape.
But they do come in more oval shapes as well.
When this is the spiny cucumber, it can oddly look like a durian.
However, this is only the case in pictures.
Because if you see it in real life, the small size of the cucumber itself should instinctively tell you that it cannot be a durian.