Here’s everything you need to know about the English Cucumber. Like what are English Cucumbers and why are they wrapped in plastic? Are they the same as a hothouse cucumber? What’s the difference between English cucumbers vs Persian cucumbers? Plus 15 Recipes with Cucumbers to help you add more cucumbers into your diet.
There’s several different types of cucumbers and there’s many ways to use them. I’ve listed 15 cucumber recipes in this article to help you incorporate more cucumbers into your diet.
What Are English Cucumbers?
English cucumbers (also called hothouse, greenhouse, seedless, burpless and European cucumber) are long with dark green skins that have distinct ridges running lengthwise. They have tiny seeds so the flesh (and skin) don’t taste bitter like the garden cucumber does.
Cucumbers are a member of the cucurbitaceae family (gourd family), which includes zucchini, squash, melons and pumpkins. Botanically speaking, cucurbits are actually a type of fruit. Most cucurbits are herbaceous tendril-bearing vines that are commonly grown in warmer climates.
Choosing The Best
When choosing the best to buy, always look for firm rich green cucumbers that are free of soft spots, cracks or withered and shriveled ends.
Why Are English Cucumbers Wrapped In Plastic?
Most store-bought cucumbers have a thin layer of wax coating on the skin, similar to apples, but English hothouse cucumbers are tightly sealed in plastic instead. The plastic wrapping helps to protect their delicate skins from becoming dehydrated and damaged during transit from field to store.
How To Store Them
Store unwashed cucumbers in a plastic bag in the refrigerator where they should last up to a week.
There are many varieties of cucumbers. Cucumbers that you eat fresh are typically classified as slicing cucumbers and other cucumbers with their thick and bumpy skins are most often used for pickling. English cucumbers are usually a little more expensive than garden cucumbers, but with English cucumbers you get to enjoy the peel and tiny seeds and all the fiber and nutrients they provide.
English Cucumber vs Cucumber
The typical cucumbers found in the grocery stores are American cucumbers (also called slicing cucumber and garden cucumber). They have a thicker and darker green skin, with a softer texture and many large seeds that can give the flesh a slightly bitter taste. It’s best to peel these cucumbers and scrape away the seeds before consuming.
English Cucumber vs Persian Cucumber
Persian cucumbers are similar to English hothouse cucumbers in taste and texture, but they’re about half the size. They’re both crunchy, have thin skins, few seeds and mild flavor. Neither of them need to be peeled before consuming.
English Cucumber vs Kirby Cucumber
Kirby cucumbers are shorter, with a thick bumpy skin. These cucumbers are most often used for pickling.
English Cucumber vs Japanese Cucumber
Japanese cucumbers are long and crispy with thin skins and few seeds, and English cucumbers have more flavor than other types of cucumbers.
How to Add More Cucumbers to Your Diet (15 Recipes with Cucumbers)
Here are some recipes with cucumbers to help you incorporate more nutritious and hydrating cucumber into your daily wellness plan.
- Blend cucumbers and cucumber together and freeze in ice cube trays to make Hydrating Cucumber Ice Cubes. These ice cubes add a refreshing pop of flavor and nutrients to a glass of water or tea.
- Add cucumber slices to water to make refreshing Cucumber Water.
- Toss cucumbers in salads like this Mediterranean Chickpea Cucumber Salad, Grilled Chicken Salad, Chef Salad, Everyday Tossed Salad, Best Quinoa Salad, Romaine Salad, Italian Chopped Salad, Mediterranean Quinoa Salad, Crunchy Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad, Mexican Gazpacho Fruit Salad, Loaded Low-Fat Egg Salad and Grilled Salmon Salad.
- Add thin slices of cucumbers to sandwiches, wraps and bowls.
- Serve them on a crudites platter with hummus and Ranch Dip
- Add them to smoothies and juice blends like this Immune Boosting Carrot Juice