What is a pawpaw?

The pawpaw is the largest fruit NATIVE to North America. It grows wild in about 26 eastern states, and was discovered by Hernando DeSoto c.1540 and has been delightfully consumed by Native Americans and other historical Americans like Lewis & Clark. Native Americans even planted pawpaws as they traveled, using them for food along trails and used the bark for baskets and making fish nets. Pioneers ate pawpaws before apples and other fruits came to America. Back to Top

How do I eat this fruit?

The fruit should be ripe. You will know its ripe when the fruit is slightly soft to the touch and gives off a nice banana/mango-y aroma. Next, the peel should be removed since it is slightly bitter. Mind the large seeds! For cooking/baking, a good general rule of thumb is to substitute the pawpaw for the banana in many popular recipes. Back to Top

Why doesn’t my local market carry pawpaw fruit?

Because there aren’t many growers and due to the expense of processing the organic fruit, pawpaws aren’t usually available in grocery stores. Your best bet is in a farmer’s market when the fruit is in season, late summer to early fall. Remember to wash your fruit well before eating. Back to Top

What is the nutritional value of this fruit?

An apple a day may keep the doctor away, but eating HALF a pawpaw does the same job. The pawpaw is rich in antioxidants and other nutrients. Back to Top

When is harvest season for this fruit?

The fruit is in season in late Summer to early Fall. Your harvest time will depend on climate and where in the US you are growing. Back to Top


Pawpaw and pawpaw seeds

Copyright © 2007 Ohio Pawpaw Growers Association. All rights reserved. Revised: 07/16/22.