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Difference Between Lime and Key Lime

Lime vs Key Lime

Citrus is the common name of the flowering shrub or small tree that belongs to the Rutaceae family which is native to Southeast Asia. Its fruits, which are rich in vitamin C and flavonoids, can be eaten fresh or made into juice or jam.
There are many varieties of citrus the most common of which are: oranges, grapefruit, tangerines, lemons, and limes. While oranges, tangerines, and grapefruit are usually eaten fresh, lemons and lime are best for making juices and as garnishment for dishes.

Lime is a citrus variety that is round and has a green to yellow color. Its pulp is very acidic and sour and is used in many dishes. Its leaves are also used as herbs in most parts of Asia while its juice is used to add flavor to different types of drinks.

It has many other uses aside from being consumed as food. It is a good medicine for scurvy, and its essential oils are used in perfumes. Lime is also used in the manufacture of cleaning products. There are several types of lime, namely; Persian, Spanish, sweet, Australian, Kaffir, blood, Mandarin, musk, and Key lime.
Key lime is smaller, has more seeds, and has a stronger aroma than most other types of lime. While a lime usually has a green color when unripe, which is when they are usually harvested, key lime is yellowish in color. It is also less hefty than other types of lime. It has a thinner rind than most other lime types and is more acidic, but it has a sweeter taste than any other lime types. Its flavor is also different. It has a stronger, more intense, and tart taste. It is used in syrups, desserts, marinades, curries, and dressings.

It is also known as Omani lime, Mexican or West Indian lime, and Bartender’s lime. It enhances the flavor of alcoholic drinks such as margaritas, tonics, and gins. It got its name from the Florida Keys which is known for its Key lime pie. It is also native to Southeast Asia but was brought to the USA via the Middle East, North Africa, Europe, specifically Spain, which brought the tree to the Florida Keys.


1.Lime is a variety of the citrus plant that has fruits which are used in juices and dishes while Key lime is a type of lime.
2.Most types of lime have thick rinds, but Key lime has a thinner rind.
3.Key lime is sweeter than other types of lime.
4.Key lime is smaller in size and volume than most other types of lime.
5.Key lime is tarter, more acidic, and has a more intense flavor while other types of lime have less acid content and less intense flavor.
6.Limes are harvested while they are still green in color, but Key lime has a more yellowish color compared to other types of lime.
7.Key lime has more seeds than other types of lime, and it is also best used to enhance drinks and beverages.

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1 Comment

  1. In one place you say key limes are sweeter than other limes and in another lace you say they are tarter and more acidic. Which is it, sweeter or tarter?

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