The most important etiquette rules on how to serve and eat clementines. Tips to be the ideal host or the perfect guest.

clementine oranges

What clementine etiquette is

Clementine etiquette is the set of rules to properly serve and eat clementines. Such rules help avoid behaviors that can disrespect hosts or guests, or make you look unpolite.

If you are hosting, follow clementines’ etiquette to serve them to your guests appropriately.

If you are a guest, respect clementines’ etiquette rules to properly eat and enjoy them.

What you should know about clementines

Clementines are a seedless variety of mandarins. Mandarins are a type of orange.

They are round in shape, orange in color, and smaller than oranges. Their skin is thin and easy to peel. Their texture is soft and juicy. Clementines are sweet in taste, sometimes with a slightly tangy note.

How To Serve And Eat clementines

Etiquette tips to serve and eat clementines

1) How to store clementines

You can keep clementines out of the fridge. Place them in a fruit bowl. Keep them far from sources of heat or direct light. Properly stored, they can last for around 1 week.

When you store clementines in the fridge, they can last for 2 to 3 weeks. Do not wrap them in plastic.

Clementines can be stored in the freezer too. It is best to store them whole, unpeeled. In the freezer, they can last for 6 months.

2) How to clean clementines

Wash clementines under cold running water before you eat them. 

3) How to prepare clementines

Clementines are commonly eaten fresh. 

If you use clementines in a dessert or a fruit salad, peel them first. Use whole wedges. Slices are uncommon.

You can squeeze clementines to get juice. However, serving clementine juice is uncommon because of its high sweetness.

4) How to serve & present clementines

Serve clementines for breakfast, a snack, or in the fruit course after a meal.

When you serve clementines whole, present them in a fruit bowl.

Serve clementines at room temperature. Take them out of the fridge 1 or 2 hours before serving.

5) Foods and beverages to serve clementines with

Clementines pair well with chocolate, ginger, and vanilla. 

Clementines go well in fruit salads with cherry, figs, and tropical fruits. They pair well with berries, such as strawberries or blueberries.

Pair clementines with sparkling wine. Such as Champagne or a dry Prosecco.

6) How to eat clementines

You can peel clementines with your hands. Eat them with your fingers, one or two wedges at a time.

Spit the pips in your hand. While you do it, cover your mouth with the other hand. Avoid making noise, facial expressions, or moving your head. Put the pips close together on one side of your plate. Do not fiddle with pips in your mouth or on the plate.

clementines etiquette mistakes

Clementine etiquette: the worst mistakes

The Rude Index identifies and ranks negative behaviors. 

A high score (8-10) means that the behavior has the potential to trigger a conflict with others. A medium score (4-7) means that the behavior risks making you look inelegant and unsophisticated. More about the Rude Index and its methodology here.  

Avoid the worst clementines etiquette mistakes. 

  • 9/10. Spitting seeds in a visible way.
  • 8/10. Serving spoiled or overripe clementines.
  • 8/10. Spraying others while peeling a clementine.
  • 7/10. Serving unripe clementines.
  • 6/10. Putting a whole clementine in your mouth.

Additional information for properly serving clementines

How many calories per serving?

Counting calories is important to stay healthy and to correctly plan a menu.

Clementines contain about 57 calories per 100 grams. On average, a clementine contains between 40 and 47 calories. 

How to buy the best clementines

A crucial factor in clementine etiquette is to serve the best product possible to your guests.

Season and availability 

The season for clementines is from November to February.

Choose the best

Ripe clementines should feel firm and without soft spots. They should feel heavier than they look.

Alternatives to clementines

The best substitutes for clementines are similar citrus fruits. Tangerines and other varieties of mandarins are the most popular ones. Other valid alternatives can be sweet varieties of oranges.


Are mandarins and tangerines the same thing?

Tangerines are a variety of mandarin oranges.

What is the difference between mandarins and tangerines?

There are only slight differences. Tangerines tend to be larger, brighter in color, and with thinner skin.

Are tangerines and clementines the same thing?

Tangerines and clementines are two different varieties of mandarin oranges.

What is the difference between tangerines and clementines?

The main difference is that clementines do not have seeds.