Clementines: the ultimate in kid-friendly citrus

‘Tis the season for clementines — those adorable (some might even say darling) seedless mandarin oranges that often come in five-pound boxes. Grab yourself some: not only are they delicious, full of germ-fighting Vitamin C, and festive when piled in a bowl on the table, they’re easy for the littlest hands to peel. Plus, unlike navel oranges, they don’t squirt juice everywhere while you’re trying to separate the sections into edible bites.

(I included a link to a clementine vendor at Amazon for those not familiar with the fruit. However, the price there is prohibitively high — you can certainly do better at your local grocery. I just picked up a box at Trader Joe’s for six bucks.)

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  1. says

    these happen to be my favorite fruits and they’re just coming into season. one word to the wise tho: some small percentage have seeds this year. There’s a reason for it — I forget the exact story, but it’s got something to do with bees wreaking havoc — so treat yourself to a segment before you hand one to a toddler, just to make sure it’s seed free.

  2. says

    Actually, more than just treating yourself to a segment first, I find it safer to hold each segment up to a bright light source to make sure that it’s free of seeds before handing it to my 3 year old.

    What a great fruit, though. We must be on our 6th or 7th box by now, and they’ve only been in season for a few weeks. :)

  3. says

    I am not sure there is a better snack. So easy to peal even my 2 year old can do it- portable, small, and so tasty.
    Even $6 a box adds up though- my kids each have several a day and so a box lasts about 3 days. They are so good for so many reasons though that we fit them into our budget :)

  4. AnnMarie Johnson says

    It’s not just this year. Every time I’ve bought a box of clementines, there’s a decent percentage with seeds in them.

  5. Matt Brown says

    We like them, too. My 15 month old son is pretty picky, but loves oranges of any kind.

    We had a clementine on the table that he got ahold of a couple of days ago. I watched him to see what he would do with it since it wasn’t peeled. He was able to remove about a quarter of the peel, pull some bits out (which wasn’t as messy as I expected), then rip the rest in half and eat the orange out. I was amazed.

  6. says

    Oh, my! Clementines are a big favorite in my house. My girl would eat 3-4 a day if we let her. She is so proud that at 2.5 she can peel them herself. We saw clementine sorbert at a fancy gelateria, but for some reason she would not even try a little free spoon full. Wierd.

  7. says

    OK, Parent Hackers. The obvious follow-up is to discuss clever ideas for using the empty clementine boxes. Holders for crayons? Tools? The basis for dollhouses or Matchbox parking garages?

  8. Marykz says

    a couple of our old clementine boxes are doll beds-but I had to take sandpaper to the edges of the boxes. For some reason the wood was very rough on our boxes. Cheaper I guess… MKZ