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Dates are the fruits that come from the date palm trees. This historic fruit has been around for more than 6,000 years. In 1898, the USDA created a team of explorers to go out all over the world to bring back food crops for farmers to grow. The fruit we now know as dates were one of them. Today, the Coachella Valley in California produces 90 % of the United States’ date supply.

  • Kingdom: Plantae
  • Order: Arecales
  • Family: Arecaceae
  • Genus: Phoenix
  • Species: P. dactylifera
  • Binomial name: Phoenix dactylifera

Date Trivia

  • Date fruit stones (pits) are used to make eyeliners and soap.
  • Correctly stored dates can last for years in the right conditions
  • In Oman, when a son is born, they will plant a date tree for him
  • In Islamic Tradition, the tree of life in the Garden of Eden is the date tree

Date Buying Guide

When shopping for fresh dates, look for ones that aren’t overly wrinkled. They should still be plump and should have a slight shine to their skin. They should be soft or firm to the touch, never hard.

Avoid buying dates that have crystallized sugar on their skins, and this is a sure sign that the dates aren’t fresh.

Date Production & Farming in Texas

Although the weather in Texas is perfect for growing dates, large scale date production is not prevalent in Texas. Several independent growers produce and supply dates to the local farmers’ markets and specialty stores, but their numbers are not recorded.


Due to the conditions where the date palm thrives, a lot of commercial (at least in the USA) date production does not use pesticides. The dessert-like climate of where the dates are grown, plus the height of the tree, doesn’t allow for many insects or pests to survive.


Date palms can grow in almost any type of soil. It is very tolerant of drought, but it needs plenty of water when the flowering and fruiting season comes. Full sun is required for the date trees, and spacing is critical as date tree roots are adventurous and can spread in all directions.


Dates are harvested directly from the tree, which can sometimes be as high as 75 feet high. They grow in bunches and are taken down as such. Once on the ground, they are separated by hand for ripeness and maturity. The ripe dates are then packaged and sent out to customers while the unripe dates will be left out in the heat (covered, not directly exposed to sunlight) to continue ripening.

Enjoying Dates

The only thing you’ll need to do with dates before consuming them is checking for the pit. Make a slit on the side and pull the pit out, it’s that simple. After de-pitting the date, you can now enjoy them.


Dates should be stored at room temperature inside an airtight container. Fresh dates will last up to a month when stored correctly at room temperature.

When stored inside the fridge, dates can last for up to one year.

Dates can be stored in the freezer using freezer-safe containers for up to three years or even more. To use frozen dates, take them out at least 3 hours before using them for them to be able to thaw out correctly.


Dates are very versatile. They can be used in smoothies, baked goods, candies, salads, and even appetizers.


  • Carbs
    • 100g of dates contains 75g of carbohydrates, with 66.5g of that being sugars. While this may seem high, there are a lot of reasons why you can continue to enjoy dates.
      • This is an excellent alternative to empty-calorie sweets. Satisfy your sweet tooth while getting a good dose of vitamins and minerals to boot.
      • Dates can also be used for a substitute for refined sugar in baking recipes. Natural sugar beats refined sugars any day of the week.
    • Fiber
      • Dates are high in fiber. 100g of dates contains 6.7g of dietary fiber, which is over 27% of the daily recommended intake.
      • Fiber helps you maintain gut health and helps flush out toxins.
      • The fiber content in dates also promotes digestion and can relieve constipation.
    • Vitamins and minerals:
      • Dates are high in polyphenols.
        • Polyphenols are antioxidant compounds that can reduce inflammation in the joints and in different parts of the body. Dates contain the highest levels of polyphenols among fruits and vegetables.
      • Dates are high in Potassium, Magnesium, Copper, and Manganese
        • These minerals provide a wide variety of benefits to the body
      • Dates are also high in Vitamin B6
        • Vitamin B6 improves your overall mood and may help alleviate symptoms of depression.
        • Your body cannot produce vitamin B6, so dates are a good source for it



  • Serving Size: 1 Serving
  • Calories: 277 14%
  • Carbs: 75g 25%
  • Sugar: 66.5g
  • Fiber: 6.7g 27%
  • Protein: 1.8g 4%
  • Fat: 0.2g 0%
  • Saturated Fat: 0g 0%
  • Trans Fat 0g 0%
  • Cholesterol 0mg 0%
  • Sodium 1mg 0%
  • Vitamin C 0mg 0%
  • Vitamin A 149IU 3%
  • Calcium 64mg 6%
  • Iron 0.9mg 5%
  • Potassium 696mg 20%
  • Vitamin K 2.7mcg 3%
  • Vitamin B6 0.2mg 12%
  • Folate 15mcg 4%
  • Magnesium 54mg 14%
  • Phosphorus 62mg 6%
  • Manganese 0.3mg 15%
  • Copper 0.4mg 18%
  • Zinc 0.4mg 3%

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