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The apricot is a stone fruit related to the plum, almond, peach, and nectarine.


Dried apricots

Apricots are small to medium-sized hand fruits, plum-sized at most. They are yellow to orange, with smooth or slightly velvety skin. They have loose, fairly smooth pits. When ripe, an apricot is very soft but not mushy. They are easy to bruise and do not keep well.

Most apricots are picked while very unripe, and never develop much apricot flavor. When fresh apricots aren't in season, dried apricots are often available. They may be treated with sulfur dioxide, which preserves their orange color, or untreated.[1] Untreated dried apricots will have a darker, more caramelized flavor. Softer dried apricots will have more water and slightly less intense flavor than tougher ones. Which to use will depend on personal preference and the recipe.

Freeze-dried apricots are crunchy and extremely sweet.


Seasonality tables | Autumn | Winter | Spring | Summer | All year
Apricots Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Northern hemisphere                        
Southern hemisphere                        

The peak season for apricots falls in in the early summer (May through July on the northern hemisphere). [1][2]

In North America, Apricots are available throughout the year from different regions:

  • Mid-February through mid-March from Chile
  • Mid-June through mid-July from California
  • Mid-July through mid-August from Washington

Selection and storage


Fresh apricots are best when they are locally grown. Otherwise, they will be picked for shipping before ripe and will lack flavor.[1][2] They should be golden-orange and plump, but not mushy.[2]

Ripe apricots keep for up to a week in the fridge.[2]

Apricots may be used fresh, dried, freeze-dried, or used in cooking. They are commonly used in jam, and this jam is used in many confections. Apricot pits are roasted and used to flavor liqueurs.[1][3]

To cut an apricot, slice around its seam, twist it in half, and gently lift out the pit.




  1. a b c Davidson, Alan (2014-01-01). Jaine, Tom (ed.). The Oxford Companion to Food. Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/acref/9780199677337.001.0001. ISBN 978-0-19-967733-7.
  2. a b c Gisslen, Wayne (2015-03-12). Essentials of Professional Cooking, 2nd Edition. Wiley Global Education. ISBN 978-1-119-03072-0.
  3. Rinsky, Glenn; Rinsky, Laura Halpin (2008-02-28). The Pastry Chef's Companion: A Comprehensive Resource Guide for the Baking and Pastry Professional. John Wiley & Sons. ISBN 978-0-470-00955-0.