Miracle Fruit - Berries That Turn Sour Foods Sweet - mberry Tablets Review

Mar 08, 2011 by Visual Recipes | Filed in Food Oddities, Reviews, Spotlight on Food | 2 Comments

What is Miracle Fruit?

Miracle fruit, also known as miracle berry, or by its latin name synsepalum dulcificum, is a fruit that grows in the tropical areas of West Africa. The miracle fruit berries are small, red, and have a slightly sweet, tangy flavor. However, their flavor isn’t the reason why people eat them.


CC Attribution License - Photo Credit: Vera Devera

What the miracle fruit does it quite simply miraculous, and attests as to why the fruit is so aptly named. If you chew on a miracle berry and roll the pulp across your tongue for a minute or two, a unique glycoprotein molecule called Miraculin binds to the tastebuds on your tongue and affects them in such a way that sour and bitter foods taste sweet.

Although miracle fruit isn’t well known within the United States, it is slowly developing a cult following. Here are some ways that miracle berries are currently being used:

Diabetics and Dieters

The Miraculin in miracle fruit allows dieters and diabetics the enjoyment of consuming sweets without the calories and sugar. Imagine having a lemon or lime flavored Italian ice or sorbet without any sugar and minimal calories.

In Tokyo, Japan, there is a restaurant called Miracle Fruits Cafe that is popular among dieters as they only serve desserts that are 100 calories or less. Without the help of Miraculin, the desserts would be sour or just bland.

Helping Cancer Patients

Cultivators of miracle fruit report that there is a small demand from cancer patients as the miraculin supposedly helps counteract a metallic taste that may be experienced by those being treated with chemotherapy.

Making Bitter Tasting Oral Medications Taste Better

For those who have been searching for a solution as to how to make bitter medications taste better without using sugar, miracle fruit may very well be the solution.

“Flavor Tripping” Parties

Those who have an adventurous palate are attending “flavor tripping” parties. Hosts offer the miracle fruit in either fresh, freeze dried, or tablet form along with a large assortment of bitter and citric fruits for their guests to experience the altered flavors.

Where Can You Buy Miracle Fruit?

It isn’t easy to find miracle fruit within the United States, at least in its natural state, as the fruit perishes within a few days. What is more commonly available are freeze-dried granules of ground miracle fruit pulp and tablets which are made by dehydrating the ground pulp.

Due to the short shelf life of the whole berries, we decided to try miracle fruit tablets instead. We tried tablets from a company called mberry. The mberry brand miracle berry tablets are made by compressing the freeze-dried extract from the miracle berries and then adding corn starch to bind it all together. Each package of mberry contains 10 miracle fruit tablets and costs about $15 USD.  Click Here to purchase a pack of mberry Miracle Fruit Tablets

Our review of mberry miracle fruit tablets:

We rounded up our families and handed out the mberry miracle fruit tablets, informing each participant in this taste experiment to suck on the tablet and allow it to fully coat the tongue as it melts down. Once the tablet was fully dissolved, we asked each person to take a taste of a wide variety of foods set out on a table.

Here are the foods that users tried along with some of their comments on the flavor after having had the miracle fruit tablet:

Hot Sauce - Tastes like sweet BBQ sauce.
Lemon - Nice and sweet. Tasters could eat whole lemons just like an orange. No pucker faces.
Lemon Juice in Seltzer Water - Tastes like lemonade soda.
Orange - Sweeter than normal.
Apple - Sweeter than normal.
Watermelon - No change.
Diet Coke - Removed the Coke taste — tastes just like seltzer water.
Vinegar - Participants were able to drink small cups of vinegar. The taste was sweet but it still had the punch of vinegar going down their throats.
Grapefruit - Tastes good — sweet. The bitterness of the grapefruit completely disappeared.
Strawberries - Tastes like the best, sweetest strawberry ever. It’s like they are dipped in sugar. Delicious.
Wine - No change.
Kosher Pickles - Taste like sweet gerkins.
Pepperidge Farm Gold Fish - No change.
Mustard - Tastes smoother and not as tart.
Sour Cream - Tastes smoother and not as sour.
Salt & Vinegar Chips - The taste of the salt & vinegar disappears.
Coffee - All the bitterness is gone. For those that didn’t like coffee, this made it easy for them to drink.
Dark Chocolate - No change.
Green Pepper - No Change.

All participants loved how the miracle berry tablets completely removed any tartness or bitterness from the flavor of citric fruits. Unfortunately, the taste-altering effect of the miracle fruit tablets only lasted around fifteen minutes.

Miracle Berry Videos:

 


Disclosure: Sample packs of mberry miracle fruit tablets were provided for the purpose of this review.

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2 Comments

Marc Azada

Sep 22, 2011

Wow! I never thought that there is a fruit like this that could alter the taste of different food. Do you know where I could buy this?

Tom Wallace

Jun 01, 2012

I saw this fruit demonstrated on the tv show “The Doctors”. They took someone from the audience and had her eat one of the fruits, then eat a lemon.  Pretty amazing that it turned the lemon into something sweet tasting.

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