How do you ripen oranges?

In this brief guide, we will answer the question “how do you ripen oranges?” with an in-depth analysis of the reason that how can we ripen oranges?. Moreover, we will discuss the need to ripen oranges by ourselves along with the methods used to do so.

How do you ripen oranges?

Oranges are picked at peak ripeness and do not continue to ripen after they are picked; however, exposure to ethylene can prompt the ripening of the peel. There are different methods used to ripen oranges after they are picked.

Artificial methods of ripening oranges:


To enhance the ripe appearance of orange using the microwave, follow the following steps:

  • Place the orange on a microwaveable dish. 
  • Place it inside the microwave and set the timer to 15 seconds on medium-high. 
  • You also can try adding fruit, such as a banana or an apple, into the microwave as well. These two fruits produce a significant amount of ethylene. Exposure to ethylene ripens the peels of citrus fruit but does not increase the sweetness.

Using a paper bag:

  • If you do not need the orange ripened immediately and would like to use more natural methods of ripening, you can place the orange inside a paper bag along with an apple.
  • Close the bag by folding it over the top, then place the bag in a window where sunlight can warm the orange, checking the package daily to ensure you catch it before it is overripe.

Can you ripen oranges off the tree?

Unlike apples and avocados, oranges do not ripen when picked off of the tree. They need a long period of warm days to sweeten the internal juices.

Can you ripen unripe oranges?

No, you can’t. Oranges don’t ripen after picking. You can, however, make the peel turn from green to orange by exposing the orange to ethylene gas usually as excreted by fruits like bananas or apples. This does nothing for the real fruit, but it can make them more appealing to look at.

How do you make green oranges turn orange?

The most common ways used to color oranges are to expose the green fruits to ethylene gas, which breaks down the chlorophyll or to expose the fruits to cold temperatures. Another very common way to color green oranges is to dye the fruits.

Will oranges ripen in the fridge?

You don’t have to refrigerate oranges, but you’ll be able to enjoy them much longer if you do. Oranges don’t ripen any further once they’ve been picked and the refrigerator is the best place for maximizing their shelf life.

What can I do with unripe oranges?

If you want the greenish oranges to ripen up, put them in a paper bag with another ripe fruit such as ripe apple or banana for a day or more. This works relatively well for most fruits so it will probably do so with the orange.

How long does it take oranges to ripen on the tree?

It can take three to five years for an orange tree to produce fruit, depending on how old the tree is when purchasing. Once the tree finally begins producing fruit, they take 7 to 8 months to ripen.

Why won’t my oranges ripen?

The most common reason citrus fruits fail to ripen is a lack of sunlight. Trees planted beneath larger trees or near buildings might not get enough sunlight for their fruits to ripen. Trees planted too closely together might also fail to produce ripe fruit.

Will my green oranges turn orange?

A green orange is still great. It turns out that you should never judge an orange by its skin color, which doesn’t give any indication of flavor or ripeness. “Cool nights can turn the fruit from green to orange, but a heatwave can turn the fruit back to green.

Will green oranges ripen on the counter?

Citrus fruits, unlike most other fruits, do not ripen after being picked from the tree. The only solution is to be proactive and not buy unripe citrus.

Other FAQs about Oranges that you may be interested in.

Can rabbits eat oranges?

Are seedless oranges GMOs?

Can orange juice go bad?

Should Cuties oranges be refrigerated?

To keep citrus fruits as sweet and fresh as possible, simply store them in the refrigerator. The cooler temperature will keep them juicy and fresh for two to three weeks.

Do Oranges get sweeter over time?

Citrus fruit does not sweeten once they are picked from the tree. While the color may change once the fruit is picked, turning more orange, the sweetness will not increase once they are picked. Once the fruit turns completely orange, they are generally as sweet as they will get.

Why are my oranges not turning orange?

By the time they turn orange they’re declining towards rot. The green skin of an orange isn’t indicating that not enough of its natural color is coming through. It’s just pumped full of chlorophyll. It’s only when the fruit is exposed to cold that the chlorophyll dies off and the orange color shines through.

Do oranges need sunlight to ripen?

The best way to find out if it’s ripe is to taste it. If it tastes sour, let it ripen longer on the tree. Citrus needs at least eight hours of sunlight; if your tree is planted under a large tree it will not be getting sufficient light, and it will be competing for water with the tree.


In this brief guide, we have answered the question “how do you ripen oranges?” with an in-depth analysis of the reason that how can we ripen oranges?. Moreover, we have also discussed the need to ripen oranges by ourselves along with the methods used to do so.


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