Golden Raspberries: Pale Packs a Punch

July  4, 2013

Every week we get Down & Dirty, in which we break down our favorite unique seasonal fruits, vegetables, and more.

Golden raspberries might be paler than their red counterparts, but they are just as delicious (and sometimes even sweeter!). We've got ideas for making the most of their stunning hue all week long.

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Did you know that all raspberries used to be this pale? Well, according to legend anyway. Baby Zeus’ nursemaid went to pick a raspberry to soothe the crying infant, but she pricked her finger on one of the plant’s thorns, drawing blood and staining raspberries red ever since. (For you scientists out there: golden raspberries' color could also be due to recessive genes. We'll let you decide.)

Despite their name, golden raspberries aren’t actually berries (but avocados are!). They are aggregate fruits, made up of lots of tiny individual drupes (other drupes include green almonds, peaches, plums, apricots, and cherries) called druplets (1). Keep your eye out for golden raspberries at your farmers market or grocery store from now till autumn. They might also be labeled white or yellow raspberries, but we're partial to the golden moniker since it has its own award

More: Not sure where the nearest farmers market is? Find one on Real Time Farms. 

Raspberries are fragile, and just like strawberries, if you see red splotches on the bottom of their container, they are overripe. With their short shelf life, you’ll want to make sure you keep your berries fresh for longer by washing them ahead of time in a solution of vinegar and water.

Golden raspberries can of course be used any place you’d use red raspberries -- or other berries. Just aim for applications that highlight their subtle color. They would create a stunning jam, but wouldn’t have the same visual impact in a muffin (though they would be just as tasty). Use them all week long in beverages, desserts, and even in a sauce for steak! (See Tuesday, below.) What are your favorite ways to enjoy golden raspberries?

Friday: Raspberry Shrub (aka Drinking Vinegar) 
Saturday: Raspberry Ice Cream Sandwiches 
Sunday: Raspberry Chevre Tart with Poppyseed Shortcrust
Monday: Saffron Raspberries
Tuesday: Raspberries and Steak
Wednesday: Raspberry Rose Soufflé
Thursday: Raspberry Acetosa Mojito 

Photos by James Ransom

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Kenzi Wilbur
    Kenzi Wilbur
  • Lindsay-Jean Hard
    Lindsay-Jean Hard
I like esoteric facts about vegetables. Author of the IACP Award-nominated cookbook, Cooking with Scraps.


Kenzi W. July 5, 2013
Love, love this legend. Thank you for continually making me cooler at cocktail parties. (I swear guests don't run away from me. I swear.)
Lindsay-Jean H. July 8, 2013
Hurray for fun food legends! (Now that you mention it, guests do get drink refills rather frequently around me...)