Durian fruit: which should you choose, eat and enjoy. 3 pro-tips

The king of fruits, it’s one that you will love or dislike. During the season for the fruit Durian in Indonesia which is from October – February it’s sold almost everywhere. Street, supermarkets, back of a truck and I can imagine this goes the same for everywhere in South East Asia.

Over the years I have bought plenty of wrong ones: they were overripe, rotten or the smell was off. I am here now to share my experience so you can choose the right fresh durian that tastes as it should.

Durian fruit seller on the road
Durian Seller on the road in Bali

Just writing about this and looking at the pictures I have, I can smell it again. Can you? Fresh ones smell very sweet and strong. From this seller, I bought 3 pieces. First I want to show you which one I did not pick

rotten durian, don't chose this
Durians that are rotten inside

Durians that look damaged on the outside are most likely also damaged on the inside. The fruit will not taste very good. In some cases they might turn grey color on the inside prematurely. The pulp will have an alcoholic and bitter taste.

durian with alcohol
grey color Durian, this one taste like alcohol and is more bitter

Did you know that Durian fruit is processed in snacks which are suitable as souvenirs to bring back home. In Semarang they make Moaci cakes with durian flavor as a souvenir! Delicious!

My Haul

3 pieces of Durian
small, medium and medium large

I bought 3 pieces for 25k IDR (about 1.65 USD). A cheap haul. During the season a Durian tree of around 3-4 years old is mature and between 25-30 meters in height. It will hold several dozen of fruits between 1-3kg. (Source Wikipedia Durian). So hurray for me, during season it’s very cheap!

Durian tree
Photo credit: Kaeru on Visualhunt.com / CC BY

Chosing the right one

The fruit I picked out, have no black spots or holes. The color is between a light brown to green color like in the picture. There should not be a lot of spikes on the outside, this is very characteristic for a good durian. Here’s a comparison. Guess first which one you is the better choice.


In the picture, you can see the left one, a bit smaller has a lot more spikes compared to the right one. Also, the color is not one to pick out.

So to summarize how to pick it out:

  • Spikes should be as minimum as possible
  • Color should be between green and light-brown
  • The fruit should not have any damage on the outside like holes.

Taste of Durian

It’s very hard to explain the taste of this exotic fruit. Many are already repulsed by the smell as it simply smells like stinky feet or something else unwashed. But to me, with fresh fruit, it smells very sweet.

You can split the fruit up on 5 slices. There is a silk-like moist pulp inside covering the seed. The pulp is the edible part

Inside the Durian.
Inside of Durian an 6.5″ phone for size comparison

There you have it. Eat fruit meat around the seed and enjoy the tropical taste of this fruit. Here is how you open it. Make incisions so you can split it into slices.

Popular recipes for Durian I will soon try out

freezing durian
Saving and freezing my durian

I currently have some stock frozen. I want to create some of the recipes for my cooking section of the website.

  • Durian Pancake
  • Durian Cake
  • Juice

I already had some biscuits, premade and bought in the supermarkets. It had the smell but not the taste. So I hope in the near future I hope I can make tasty snacks out of my leftovers.

Health Benefits

It’s a fruit so it should have vitamins, minerals and some more benefits to us right? Per 100 gr of pulp

  • Carbs: 27.09 g
  • Energy: 615 kJ
  • Fat: 5.33 g
  • Protein: 1.47 g
  • Fiber: 3.8 g
  • Vitamin A: 44 IU
  • Thiamine (B1): 0.374 mg (33% Daily Value)
  • Riboflavin: (B2) 0.2 mg 17% DV
  • Niacin (B3): 1.074mg 7% of the DV
  • Vitamin (B6): 0.316mg 26% dv
  • Folate (B9): 36 ug 22% of the DV
  • Vitamin C: 19.7mg 24% of the Daily Value (DV)

Next to being rich in vitamins it also offers plenty of minerals like Calcium, copper, iron magnesium manganese, phosphorus potassium, and zinc.

Even though 65% of the pulp in water, it’s still a very nutritional fruit.

Other benefits: Reducing cancer risk, preventing heart disease, fighting off infection, and lowering blood sugar. (Source: Healthline)

Debunking Myths:

Durian with beer kills

Not true! Durian with beer does not kill, just don’t overdo it.

Jackfruit is the same as Durian

jackfruit is not durian

Not true. However the shape and size kind of look similar, it is not true. The taste, smell, and whole sensation is different. I never hear anyone saying that Jackfruit, the stinky fruit. It’s durian the stinky yet delicious fruit.

Durian during pregnancy

According to BabyCenter it is ok to eat it during pregnancy and it can be beneficial. I got paranoid during pregnancy, it’s the hormones. I didn’t do it myself out of fear for alcohol and other stories I’ve heard. After all, it’s a bit taboo for Asians.

Enjoy the fruit, don’t overdo it. If you eat too much of 1 thing it can’t be too good. so vary it up. Also try to eat other fruits! I hope it was helpful for you that you know which fruit to chose.

2 thoughts on “Durian fruit: which should you choose, eat and enjoy. 3 pro-tips”

    • When you get the chance and find it, try to get the imported Durian from Bangkok. Their Durian is legendary even here in Bali


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