13 Best Substitutes for Blood Orange: Alternatives & Measurements for Home Cooks

When it comes to cooking or baking, we always strive to follow the recipe as closely as possible for the best results.

However, sometimes we may not be able to find all the ingredients required, or we may have to substitute certain ingredients due to dietary restrictions, availability or preference.

Blood oranges have a unique taste and color that can be hard to replicate, but sometimes we may run out of this delicious fruit and need to find a substitute to keep cooking.

Fear not, dear home chefs, for there are plenty of ideal alternatives that can provide similar flavors and textures to your recipes.

In this article, we will discover 13 of the best blood orange substitutes, along with measurements for each one.

Let’s get cooking!

In short, " What Can I use instead of blood orange?"

Regular Oranges, Grapefruit, Lemon and Sweetener, Tangerines, Clementines, Pomegranate Juice, Red Food Coloring, Navel Oranges, Cara Cara Oranges, Mandarin Oranges, Pomegranates, Passionfruit, Raspberry.

What is blood orange, and what does blood orange taste like?

Blood orange is a combination of orange with dark red, almost burgundy-colored flesh. It has a distinctive sweet and slightly bitter flavor that can range from tangy citrus notes to raspberry-like sweetness.

The rind of the blood orange can also vary in color, ranging from deep red to vivid pink or even purple.

Blood oranges are typically juicier than regular oranges, making them ideal for juicing or adding to salads and desserts.

They are also an outstanding source of vitamin C, as well as antioxidants like anthocyanins which help promote good health. 

In addition to their unique flavor and nutritional value, blood oranges make an enticing presentation when used in recipes or simply sliced on a plate.

Uses of blood orange

Here are some of the most common uses of blood oranges like-

1. Culinary uses

Blood oranges are often used in cooking and baking to add vibrant color and a zesty flavor to recipes.

They can be sliced and served in salads, used in marmalades, made into juice or sorbet, and used as a garnish for cocktails.

Blood orange juice is also a key ingredient in many popular cocktails, such as Blood and Sand or Negroni.

2. Health benefits

Blood oranges are packed with nutrients, making them a healthy addition to your diet. They are an excellent source of vitamin C, which helps boost your immune system and protect your body from harmful toxins.

Additionally, the high fiber content in blood oranges can help regulate digestion and prevent constipation.

Potassium, another nutrient found in blood oranges, is essential for maintaining healthy blood pressure levels and heart function.

3. Aesthetic uses

The vibrant red color of the blood orange makes it a popular choice for decorative purposes. The juice, when added to soap or bath bombs, can add a pop of color to your bathroom routine.

Blood oranges are also commonly used to create floral arrangements, providing a unique and eye-catching element.

4. Cultural significance

Blood oranges were originally grown in Italy and are deeply rooted in the country’s culture. They are often used in traditional dishes, such as the Sicilian salad, which includes red onions, blood oranges, and anchovies.

Blood oranges are also featured in traditional Italian ceremonies and holidays.

In conclusion, blood oranges are not only delicious and visually appealing but also offer a wide range of health benefits.

They can be used in various ways, from culinary to decorative, making them a versatile ingredient to have in your kitchen.

Next time you see blood oranges at the grocery store, consider picking up a few to try in your next recipe or to add a pop of color to your home.

Where to buy blood orange?

If you are looking for where to buy blood orange, there are a few different places you can go. Many specialty food stores carry it, as do some international grocery stores

You can also order online from many retailers that provide a variety of diverse flavors and types of blood orange.

Best substitutes for blood orange

1. Regular Oranges

regular oranges are the best substitutes for blood orange

If you cannot find blood oranges, the best substitute would be regular oranges. While they may not have the same deep red color or a slightly sweeter taste, they will still add a citrusy flavor to your recipe.

Ratio or measurement: Use about 1 regular orange per 1 blood orange.

Learn more: Substitution for Orange juice

2. Grapefruit

Grapefruit is another citrus fruit that can be used as a substitute for blood oranges.

They have a tangy and slightly bitter taste, so it is recommended to use them in recipes that will balance out the bitterness, such as a salad dressing or a marinade.

Ratio or measurement: Use about 1/2 grapefruit per 1 blood orange.

3. Lemon and Sweetener

lemon and sweetener can be used as a substitute for blood oranges

A combination of lemons and a sweetener, such as honey or sugar, can also be used to substitute blood oranges.

This will add a tangy and sweet taste to your recipe. 

Ratio or measurement: Use about 2 tablespoons of lemon juice and 1 tablespoon of sweetener per 1 blood orange.

4. Tangerines

Tangerines have a similar taste and texture to blood oranges, making them a great substitute. They are slightly sweeter and less tangy than oranges.

Ratio or measurement: Use about 1 tangerine per 1 blood orange.

5. Clementines

Clementines are tiny, sweet oranges that can also be used as a substitute for blood oranges, especially in desserts or cocktails.

Ratio or measurement: Use about 2 clementines per 1 blood orange.

6. Pomegranate Juice

pomegranate juice can also be used as a alternate for blood oranges

If you are looking for an alternative to the deep red color of blood oranges, try using pomegranate juice. This will also add a slightly tart and sweet flavor to your recipe.

Ratio or measurement: Use about 1/4 cup of pomegranate juice per 1 blood orange.

7. Red Food Coloring

If you are only concerned about the color of your recipe and not necessarily the flavor, you can use red food coloring to mimic the deep red color of blood oranges.

However, keep in mind that food coloring may have a strong and artificial taste, so use it sparingly.

8. Navel Oranges

Navel oranges can easily replace blood oranges in most recipes, and their sweet and tangy taste is similar to that of blood oranges.

Ratio or measurement: To substitute one blood orange, use half of a large or one small navel orange.

You can also add a little bit of lemon or lime juice to replicate the blood orange’s tartness.

9. Cara Cara Oranges

cara cara oranges are used as a substitute for blood oranges

Cara Cara oranges are another type of navel orange that has a reddish-pink flesh and a sweeter taste than regular navels. 

They are a great substitute for blood oranges when it comes to color and flavor.

Ratio or measurement: To replace one blood orange, use half of a large or one small Cara Cara orange, sliced or juiced.

10. Mandarin Oranges

Mandarin oranges have a distinct, sweet flavor that can add depth to your recipes.

Ratio or measurement: To substitute one blood orange, use two to three mandarin oranges or a quarter cup of mandarin orange juice.

11. Pomegranates

While pomegranates may not taste like blood oranges, they can provide a pop of color and sweetness to your recipes.

They are perfect for salads, dressings, and sauces.

Ratio or measurement: To substitute one blood orange, use one-fourth cup of pomegranate seeds or juice.

12. Passionfruit

passionfruit can be a good substitute for blood oranges

Passionfruit has a bright, tropical, and tangy flavor that can enhance your recipes. They add a layer of complexity that can be a good substitute for blood oranges in some recipes.

Ratio or measurement: To substitute one blood orange, use two to three passionfruit or one-quarter cup of passionfruit puree or juice.

13. Raspberry

Raspberries can provide a tangy and sweet flavor to your recipes with a pop of ruby-red color. They are perfect for desserts, cakes, and cocktails.

Ratio or measurement: To substitute one blood orange, use a one-quarter cup of raspberry puree or mashed raspberries.

Substitute for blood orange liqueur

Blood orange liqueur can be a fantastic addition to cocktails, adding a subtle citrus flavor and a beautiful color. However, if you cannot find blood orange liqueur in your local liquor store, there are several alternatives you can use.

One option is to use regular orange liqueur, such as Cointreau or Grand Marnier.

While these do not have the same unique flavor and color as blood orange liqueur, they will still add a delicious hint of orange that will complement many cocktails.

Another option is to use homemade blood orange syrup. 

To make this, simply combine sugar, fresh blood orange juice, and water in a saucepan and heat over medium heat until the sugar dissolves.

Then, let the mixture put in low flame for about 10 minutes until it thickens into a syrup. This homemade syrup can be added to cocktails in place of blood orange liqueur, providing a similar flavor and color.

Finally, if you want to experiment with other liqueurs, you can try using a combination of regular orange liqueur and another fruit liqueur, such as raspberry or pomegranate.

These will add a unique twist to your cocktails and can be a fun way to experiment with new flavors.

In summary, while blood orange liqueur can be a delicious addition to cocktails, there are several alternatives you can use if it is not available.

From using regular orange liqueur to making homemade syrup or experimenting with other fruit liqueurs, there are many ways to achieve a similar flavor and color profile in your cocktails.

Conclusion on substitute for blood orange

Substituting ingredients can be a great way to experiment with new flavors and work with what you have available. 

In this blog post, we have provided you with 13 substitutes for blood oranges, including measurements, so you can use them in your recipes without compromising on taste. 

From regular oranges to pomegranate juice, these alternatives can add unique and delicious flavors to your dishes. Happy cooking!

FAQs on substitute for blood orange

Q1. What oranges are closest to blood oranges?

Blood orange is a type of citrus fruit that is named for its rich red hue. But when it comes to determining what oranges are closest to blood oranges, the answer might not be what you expect. Despite their distinctive color, blood oranges are actually a variety of sweet oranges (Citrus sinensis), along with navel and Valencia oranges.

Blood oranges are believed to have originated in Sicily in the 17th century, but they’re now grown in other parts of the world, including California, Spain, and Israel. Interestingly, the red pigmentation in blood oranges comes from anthocyanins, which are a type of antioxidant that is more commonly found in berries and other fruits than in citrus.

Another distinguishing feature of blood oranges is their taste, which is often described as sweet with a hint of raspberry. So while blood oranges may look different from other sweet oranges on the outside, on the inside, they share many of the same characteristics as other members of the Citrus sinensis family.

Q2. What’s the difference between blood oranges and regular?

Blood oranges are a variety of oranges that have dark red, almost maroon color flesh. They are usually smaller and slightly rounder than regular oranges, with smoother skin and fewer seeds. Blood oranges typically have a sweeter flavor than regular oranges due to the presence of anthocyanins, which are a type of antioxidant that gives them their unique reddish hue.

The flesh is also softer compared to regular oranges and will have streaks or swirls of bright red throughout its pulp. Blood orange juice is richer in Vitamin C than regular orange juice and contains more antioxidants along with flavonoids like hesperidin and naringenin. This results in higher levels of health benefits, such as lowering inflammation and improving blood flow.

In addition, the juice from blood oranges can be used as a natural food coloring in recipes such as jams and jellies. Blood oranges are also known to have a higher content of antioxidants than other types of oranges, so consuming them regularly can help protect your body against free radicals.

Finally, the taste of blood oranges is often sweeter and juicier than regular oranges due to the higher levels of fructose they contain. They are an excellent source of dietary fiber and make a great snack or breakfast option. Enjoy this unique citrus flavor in smoothies, desserts, and salads, or drink it up as a refreshing glass of juice!

Q3. Can you substitute Cara Cara orange for blood orange?

Yes, you can substitute Cara Cara oranges for blood oranges. Cara Cara orange is another type of navel orange with pinkish-red flesh and a sweet flavor. They have the same juicy texture as blood oranges but without the distinct tartness that blood oranges provide. While they lack some of the bright flavor profile of blood oranges, Cara Caras still make an excellent substitution in any recipe that calls for them.

When substituting, it’s best to adjust other ingredients accordingly to ensure that the flavors balance out properly. Lastly, because of their unique sweetness, pairings such as avocado or feta cheese make excellent accompaniments to dishes featuring this citrus fruit!

Bonus tip: To enhance the color of dishes that feature Cara Cara oranges, try adding a splash of freshly-squeezed lemon juice or lime juice. This will help to brighten up the dish and bring out the naturally sweet flavor even more!

Q4. What are the substitutes for cara cara orange?

The Cara Cara orange, also known as the red-fleshed navel orange, is a navel orange variety originally from Venezuela. It is characterized by its bright orange rind and distinctive pinkish-red flesh, which is sweeter and less acidic than that of a typical navel orange.

In addition to being a tasty and healthy snack, Cara Cara oranges can also be used in a variety of culinary applications, including salads, cakes, and cocktails. Their vibrant color and unique flavor make them a popular choice among chefs and home cooks alike.

Here are five of the best replacements for Cara Cara oranges:

1. Blood Oranges: These oranges are similar in taste and appearance to Cara Cara oranges. They have sweet, juicy flesh with hints of raspberry and plum. They are also high in vitamin C and antioxidants, making them a healthy choice.

2. Mandarin Oranges:
If you’re looking for a smaller, sweeter orange, then mandarin oranges are a great substitute. They are easy to peel and make a great snack on their own or tossed into salads.

3. Grapefruits: If you love the tangy taste of Cara Cara oranges, then you’ll enjoy grapefruits. They are sour and bitter, but they have a refreshing taste that is ideal for hot summer days. Grapefruits are also packed with vitamin C and folate.

4. Lemons: Although lemons are much more sour than Cara Cara oranges, they have a similar amount of acidity. They can also be used in baking and cooking to add a zesty flavor to dishes. Lemons are also high in vitamin C and antioxidants.

5. Tangerines: Tangerines are another small, sweet alternative to Cara Cara oranges. They have a distinct, citrusy flavor and are perfect for snacking on during the day. They’re low in calories and high in vitamin C.

Leave a Comment