What Are Nightshade Vegetables – 12 Pieces!

What Are Nightshade Vegetables
What Are Nightshade Vegetables

What are nightshade vegetables? Nightshade vegetables are vegetables that contain certain substances that can be toxic to people who are sensitive/allergic to them. These are the so-called alkaloids.

Plants contain this substance to prevent anyone from picking parts or fruits of the plant. An immune system to protect themselves and the cuttings next to it.  

Not everyone is sensitive to nightshade plants and they can therefore eat them.

When fruits of these plants are ripened in the sun, ie not grown in a greenhouse, the toxic substances in the fruits decrease. Only sunlight can reduce this substance. So a ripe organic fruit of the nightshade plant contains less toxic substance than a fruit that is picked unripe and chemically ripened in the greenhouse. A vegetable garden could therefore offer a solution if you still want to eat a real red, well-ripened tomato, because it contains less toxic substance.

12 Nightshade Vegetables:

Below 12 nightshade vegetables are discussed, in random order, that we can eat in the Netherlands. Not all fruit is easily available, but it is certainly possible to obtain it or to grow it yourself in a greenhouse or garden.

1. Tomatoes

From a culinary point of view, tomatoes are a vegetable. This tomato is available in many different shapes and sizes. The tomato plant is a member of the nightshade family. The plant is certainly not edible. The fruits do.

However, people who are hypersensitive to plants related to nightshades suffer from complaints when they have eaten tomatoes.

A list of all tomatoes that are for sale in the Netherlands can be found in our blog ‘ The List With Types Of Tomatoes And All Information ‘.

2. White potatoes

White potatoes are also related to the nightshade. There are also many varieties of white potatoes. Some examples are: the Eigenheimer, the Frieslander, the Opperdoezer, de Sante, Charlotte, Accent and Nicola.

Especially poisonous to the potato are the green parts that are sometimes attached to it and the offshoots. These green pieces and offshoots should always be removed before cooking. The offshoots are also poisonous. So delete!

3. Peppers

To get straight to the point; the seeds of the bell pepper are poisonous. Not that you immediately become very sick from eating a few seeds, but an amount every day is not healthy, if you are not allergic. If you are allergic or sensitive to nightshades, you may experience symptoms.

It is better to eat a bell pepper organically. Allergic reactions can also be caused by the poison that is sprayed on the peppers when they are not grown organically. And a lot of poison is injected with peppers. So wash well if you do eat a non-organic bell pepper!

4. Eggplant

An eggplant is poisonous when eaten raw. You will get stomach and intestinal complaints from it, among other things. The eggplant should therefore always be prepared, ie eaten cooked, baked or grilled. This reduces the toxins.

So it won’t go away completely. Most people are not bothered by that. If you are very sensitive to nightshade fruits then it is unfortunately, but true. Not eating more or at least cutting back is the option.

5. okra

Okra grows in areas with a temperate climate. When the large flowers of the Abelmoschus have finished flowering, the seed seeds grow. These seed kernels can be eaten whole if you are not allergic.

The taste of okra is a mild taste. The taste can be compared to green beans, aubergine and asparagus. Okra should be washed thoroughly before cooking and eating. For example, you can boil them, bake them and put them raw on acid.

6. Cape Gooseberry

The Cape gooseberry is a low shrub-shaped plant that is self-pollinating. The berries grow in a kind of lanterns. The taste is sweet with a little sourness in it.

You can easily grow the Gooseberry yourself in a garden. They are not fully for sale in the Netherlands, but maybe a vegetable store can come to the Gooseberry. Sometimes they are for sale in the supermarket. They are light orange/yellow in color. You can eat them straight off the plant and store them in a cool place, but outside the refrigerator.

7. Goji Berries

The goji berry also belongs to the nightshade, nightshade fruit. These berries are considered a superfood because of their maximum nutritional value. The goji berry is not a superfood for everyone. When you get complaints after eating goji berries, your body indicates that this is not a superfood for you, but eat what you should not eat. Fortunately, there are plenty of other berries you can eat.

The goji berries are often sold dried in the Netherlands. They are red berries. Preferably buy the organic berries, these have not been sprayed. Hard and very dry berries are often old berries, it is better to leave these and look further for some fresher ones. They can give quite a bit when you press them.

8. Pimento (all spice)

Pimento, also called all spice, is a plant and spice from South America. Jamaica to be exact. This spice has the taste of cloves, pepper, cinnamon and nutmeg. It is used in dried form or ground.

It is not related to the ‘real’ pepper. It is also not as hot as black or white pepper. This spice is not used much in the Netherlands.

9. Chili pepper

The chili is eaten in many countries, probably because it enhances the taste of other products. The Spanish pepper also comes from South America and is related to the potato and tomato. They also originate from the same areas as the Spanish pepper.

The pepper has spread all over the world and has now been given many names: Piri-piri, Jalopena, tabasco, lomboks etc. It is a really hot fruit and the smaller they are, the hotter. The spiciness is mainly in the seeds.

 10. Cayenne Pepper

Cayenne pepper is a medium spicy pepper. Cayenne pepper is one of many types of chili peppers. The Cayenne pepper grows in South America but can also grow well on the windowsill.

Despite the less pleasant complaints that the cayenne pepper can give to people who are sensitive to nightshade vegetables, they also contain vitamins and minerals that are healthy for those who can tolerate nightshade vegetables.

 11. Pepino

The Pepino, the apple melon or melon pear, is also one of the nightshade family. The pepino is a large berry of about 10 by 10 centimeters, oval or round. It has the taste of melon and pear.

The flesh is soft and very juicy sweet. The skin is yellow or green with rusty brown stripes or spots. The fruit has made its appearance in the Netherlands but is not really known yet.  

 12. Miracle Berry

This Wonderberry tastes slightly sweet and does everything for your taste buds. After eating this berry, certain substances attach themselves to your tongue after which everything you eat that is sour and bitter turns into sweet. Not that that is always a success!

So eating this berry fresh (or in pill form) also seems to leave a chemical taste behind after eating delicious foods. It takes a while before this taste sensation (?) is gone. Fun for a party?

Green unripe miracle berries are poisonous!

Nightshade In Ready Made Products

If you have prescribed a nightshade-free diet, it is good to know that nightshade vegetables are also used in ready-made products.

Of course, chips and ready-made mashed potatoes, for example, are made from potato, i.e. from a nightshade plant. But also frozen products, types of bread, salad dressings and red cheese. This is just a selection of products that can contain nightshade vegetables. So if you are sensitive to nightshade vegetables, it is good to read all labels of ready-made products.  

Nightshade Family

There are 1,500 to 1,700 different types of nightshade plants. They are called nightshades because these plants often grow in the shade. Flowers of some nightshades release their scent at night. They all come from the Solanacenae family. These nightshade plants reproduce by means of flowers. The seeds are hidden in fruits.

Nightshade Toxic

Yes, the fruits of nightshades are poisonous to some people. They react to the toxins in the nightshade fruits. Many complaints can come from eating these plants, such as vitamin deficiencies, fatigue and gastrointestinal complaints. The substances that cause these complaints are called anti-nutrites.

If you are not bothered by vegetables and fruits of the nightshade family, you can safely continue to eat them. It also contains very good substances that our body can use well, such as vitamins, antioxidants and all kinds of minerals.

Surprisingly, nightshade plants can also be found in vitamin C tablets, cough medicines and painkillers.

Mushrooms Nightshade

Mushrooms do not come from the plants of the nightshade family. Mushrooms are not plants either. They’re fungi. So, no, mushrooms are not in the list of nightshades.

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