Plant Foods for Human Nutrition

, Volume 52, Issue 3, pp 263–270 | Cite as

Composition of pulp, skin and seeds of prickly pears fruit (Opuntia ficus indica sp.)

  • Radia Lamghari El Kossori
  • Christian Villaume
  • Essadiq El Boustani
  • Yves Sauvaire
  • Luc Méjean


The proximate composition of pulp, skin and seeds of prickly pear cactus (Opuntia ficus indica) was investigated and is reported on a dry weight basis. The most abundant component of the pulp and skin was ethanol-soluble carbohydrates. Pulp contained glucose (35%) and fructose (29%) while the skin contained essentially glucose (21%). Protein content was 5.1% (pulp), 8.3% (skin) and 11.8% (seeds). Starch was found in each of the three parts of the fruit. Pulp fibers were rich in pectin (14.4%), skin and seeds were rich in cellulose (29.1 and 45.1%, respectively). Skin was remarkable for its content of calcium (2.09%) and potassium (3.4%). Prickly pear is a neglected nutritional source which should be more widely used because of its potential nutrient contribution.

Carbohydrate Fiber Minerals Prickly pear Protein 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Radia Lamghari El Kossori
    • 1
  • Christian Villaume
    • 1
  • Essadiq El Boustani
    • 2
  • Yves Sauvaire
    • 3
  • Luc Méjean
    • 1
  1. 1.Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (INSERM U308) Equipe de Recherches Aliment et ComportementNancyFrance
  2. 2.Laboratoire de Biochimie Nutritionnelle et MétaboliqueFaculté des Sciences Cadi AyyadMarrakechMaroc
  3. 3.Laboratoire de Recherche sur les Substances Naturelles VégétalesMontpellierFrance

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