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Jan 22, 2006 11:04 PM

Do you eat papaya seeds?

  • r

Googling for something else, I found a mention that papaya seeds were edible. I never knew this.

Usually the taste is compared to pepper, mustard or watercress and one place compared it to horseradish or wasabi. It has the same active ingrediants as papaya seeds. I like the description that called the taste 'sparky'.

Supposedly eating the seeds with the fruit, will enhance the sweet taste of the papaya.

Like papaya, the seeds contain an enzyme that tenderizes meat, so meats marinated in papaya seeds or cooked with them will be very tender.

Those same enzymes will also breakdown proteins in mosquito bites, so rubbing a mosquito bite with papaya seeds eases the itching.

There are a lot of weird health claims to papaya seeds. In one culture they are eaten as a aprodesiac. On the other hand there are studies that say they reduce fertility. One guy said he dried the seeds and fed them to his rabbit, so ... They are used as dewormers.

Usually people use them in salad dressing

Papaya dressing:
1/2 ripe papaya
2 tablespoons fresh papaya seeds
1/2 cup nut oil
1 tablespoon of rice or white wine vinegar

Puree in a blender.

Or just blend seeds with oil and vinegar. Some recipes added mustard - dry or bottled.

This site had two recipes for papaya seeds and a lot of really cool papaya recipes

There was one mention of artichokes stuffed with ham, mayonnaise and papaya seeds.

Someone said papaya seeds could be substituted for capers.

This site had more info and some interesting uses of payaya and papaya seeds, like baking green papaya with butter, cinnamon and honey. That sounds so good.

This site had some interesting info on papaya seeds which included the fact that in India people chewed them to freshen breath.

This site on edible flowers had some interesting recipes for stuffing squash blossoms with winter and or summer squash and papaya seeds.

I need to buy some payapas now. Do you eat papaya seeds and how do you use them?


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  1. Fascinating! Thanks for that detailed summary. I've always had the sneaking suspicion that papaya seeds were too pretty to throw away, but had no idea what they were good for.

    Mmm...use the seeds to tenderize a beef stew, then eat the fruit for dessert!

    1. Papaya seeds in salads are really delicious. They have a peppery bite to them, but much more subtle than balck peppercorns.

      1. Thanks for this post. A couple of weeks ago I cut open a papaya and was struck by how beautiful the seeds were. Great to know they are edible!

        1. All the Hawaiians I know eat three or four of the papaya seeds out of superstition when they eat a papaya.

          But papaya-seed dressing is great!

          1. Years ago when I lived in Mexico for a short period of time, a very courtly gentleman once told me that papaya seeds were a great aid for digestion and for reducing the flatuclance in beans.