21 Foods That Are Brown

Some foods are brown because they are cooked in a certain way, while others turn brown because of the natural pigmentation of the food.

Some foods in your favorite color might be brown if they have gone through a process called caramelization. Caramelization is when food gets its color from sugar inside it. For example, sugars found in onions and potatoes turn them brown when caramelization takes place.

The other reason why foods can turn brown is due to naturally occurring pigments like melanin or carotenoids. For example, carrots have a natural pigment that turns them orange when exposed to light for an extended period of time.

What Makes Foods Brown?


Allicin is a carotenoid found in garlic extract and selenium. The brown-colored substance is widely used in cooking for its distinct flavor.


Oxidation occurs naturally in nature as well as in man-made substances. The oxidation process also happens when metals like iron rust, or when food spoils after exposure to air.

The molecules that makeup food and other products can be oxidized by exposure to oxygen and it can cause browning reactions. This happens because many molecules contain both oxygen atoms and other elements that react with oxygen ions. The result of oxidation will usually be the food resulting in brown color.


Roasting is a cooking process in which food is covered over high heat until it produces a distinctive aroma.

Roasting has been around for centuries. Many methods of roasting have been with us over time. For example, the traditional method of roasting meat was to put the meat on a spit and roast it in front of an open fire, or to roast it in front of hot fire with an oven that had been heated beforehand.

A recent development in roasting has been the use of convection ovens and fans. These methods not only reduce cooking times but also add flavor to the food by circulating hot air throughout the ovens and creating convection currents within them for enhanced crispness, absorption, and browning.

The List:  21 Brown Foods

1. Almonds

Almonds are one of the most sought-after fruits in the world. They are an important part of many international dishes such as pesto and pasta sauce.

Almonds look like small green fruits, but they are actually seeds that grow on a tree called a date palm. They come in both sweet and savory varieties.

The shell of the almond is composed of two layers. The first layer is the white to a creamy yellow-colored innermost layer which is actually made up of layers of dense hairs called the aril. The second layer is the outermost or brown colored shell that covers most of the nut’s surface.

The outermost layer (or rind) has very little nutritional value and is mostly removed during processing/manufacturing/packaging. It also allows for easier transport and storage.

2. Brown Mushrooms

Brown mushrooms are a type of fungi that grows on the decomposing remains of a dead tree, usually oak, pine, or cedar. They have brown caps and stems that are usually not much lighter than the rest of the body.

Brown Mushrooms play a large role in many cuisines around the world and in particular for dishes like Bolognese sauce, marinara sauce, and risotto where they can be used as an ingredient or sautéed with vegetables.

Unlike other types of mushrooms, brown mushrooms can be cooked at high temperatures but still retain their flavor and nutrients. They can also be used in different kinds of recipes like soups, risotto, or even quesadillas.

3. Brown Rice

Brown rice is a type of rice that typically has a color ranging from brown to black. It is different than white rice in color, nutrients, and taste. Brown rice is usually used for cooking in Asian cuisines such as Japanese, Korean, Chinese, and Thai cuisine.

Brown Rice is the category of white rice that has been developed to have more nutritional value and fewer calories compared to white rice. It also has a deep rich flavor compared to its relatively white counterpart.

4. Brown Sugar

Brown sugar is a type of raw sugar that has been heated until its moisture content evaporates, resulting in caramelized sugars. It has a dark color, a granular texture, and a brownish color.

Brown sugar is a sweetener used in various cuisines around the world. It is traditionally made from pure cane sugar and molasses, but it can also be made with other types of sugars.

5. Brownies

Brownies are a popular sweet treat prepared with a mixture of flour, sugar, cocoa powder, and baking powder. The combination of these ingredients creates the brownie’s rich and chewy texture. In addition, it gives it a dark brown color.

6. Chestnuts

Chestnuts are nuts that have a brown shell covered with a thin, outer layer of yellow-brown skin.

Chestnut is an underground tuber that grows into the shape of a typical chestnut. They may be eaten fresh or used for cooking or roasting.

They were often used as food by Native Americans in North America. In ancient times, it was considered an important food for humans because it contained nutrients like Vitamin B1 and thiamin which are vital for life as well as other nutrients like copper, iron, magnesium, and selenium which are important for the healthy functioning of the nervous system.

7. Chickpeas

Chickpeas are a type of dried legume with a shell that is brown in color and features an indentation on either side of the bean. The term “chickpea” can refer to dry, shelled, garbanzo beans, or canned chickpeas. Chickpeas are rich in protein and fiber and have high levels of vitamin B6, manganese, copper, and folate.

8. Chocolate

Chocolate is one of the most popular and loved delicacies around the world. It is made of sweetened, roasted cocoa beans that are ground into powder and then mixed with sugar, milk or cream, flavors, and other ingredients.

Chocolate can have delicate colors such as brown or black, but it’s mostly a mix of white and milk chocolate. The color depends on how it’s processed after being mixed with cocoa butter.

One interesting fact about chocolate is that its color changes depending on the temperature it’s exposed to during the manufacturing process – dark chocolate becomes brownish-black at lower temperatures and light brown at higher temperatures (due to some chemical reaction).

9. Cinnamon

Cinnamon is a type of spice that is used in cooking. It derives its name from the Latin word “Cinnamomum”, which means “cinnamon-tree”. It mainly comes from the inner bark of the cinnamon tree, which is harvested and sold as sticks.

Cinnamon’s flavor has been described as warm, rich, and sweet with hints of citrus or clove. Its color ranges from light brown to dark brown, and its aroma has been described as sweet with a hint of earthiness that can be pleasant or unpleasant depending on how it’s used.

10. Dates

Dates are fruits, with their vibrant colors and different shapes, that have been eaten for centuries.

While date fruit is known as a nutritious and healthy food source – the brown color of dates makes them more appealing than much other fruit.

11. Flaxseeds

Flaxseeds are also known as linseeds and have many health benefits. They have a high fiber content, which can help prevent constipation and regulate blood sugar levels. Flaxseeds are rich in Omega-3, which is good for the heart and brain.

Flaxseeds are brown in color because they contain lignans which make them look like small pieces of wood due to their shape and size.

12. Fudge

Fudge is a creamy, soft, sweet dessert that is made from sugar, butter, and eggs. Although it is typically brown in color, there are many variations of this recipe that may use different ingredients.

Fudge can be served warm or chilled as ice cream or pudding. Fudge has been around for a long time and there are many different recipes for this tasty dessert.

13. Ginger

Ginger is a type of plant that is commonly used in cooking. It is often used in curries, jerky, and many other dishes. The roots, stems, and leaves are all edible.

Ginger is a brown-colored plant that has a flavor that is distinctive.

Ginger root contains compounds such as gingerols, shogaols, zingerone and gingerdione which have antioxidant properties.

14. Hazelnuts

Hazelnuts are a type of nut that grows on the hazel tree. They have soft, juicy, and sweet flesh, which is excellent for making desserts and snacks.

Hazelnuts are a type of nut that grows on the hazel tree. They have soft, juicy, and sweet flesh, which is excellent for making desserts and snacks. Hazelnuts are usually eaten raw or toasted but they can also be used in cooking.

They can be found in many different colors such as black, brown, or even red-brown depending on their region of origin.

15. Lentils

Lentils are a type of legume that comes from the same family as peas and beans. They have a rich, earthy flavor, making them perfect for soups, stews, or adding to salads.

Lentils are primarily consumed by people who follow a vegetarian or vegan diet. Lentils can be cooked in a variety of ways, from mashing to cooking with gravy or even frying. The most commonly used lentil is the brown lentil however there are also black lentils, green lentils, red lentils, and yellow lentils.

Lentils have originated from West Asia and Central Asia where they have been cultivated for thousands of years.

16. Peanut Butter

Peanut butter is a food product made by grinding roasted peanuts and mixing them with a little bit of salt, sugar, and sometimes oil. Peanut butter is made by grinding roasted peanuts and other ingredients into a smooth paste. The consistency of peanut butter can vary depending on the amount of oil or fat used in its preparation. The color of it is light brown to dark brown, depending on how much it’s processed.

Peanut butter is enjoyed as a sandwich filling called “PB&J”, which stands for “peanut butter & jelly”. It may also be used in other types of sandwiches, on toast, baked goods, etc.

17. Pecans

Pecans are a type of nut that is brown in color with a hard shell and sweet taste. The nuts grow on trees in North America and Europe.

Pecans are also popular as a garnish for desserts like pies and cakes.

18. Pretzels

Pretzels were originally made with ground-up rye flour which gave them a dark brown color, but this is no longer how they are made; today, pretzels are often brown or golden in color.

19. Walnuts

Walnuts are nutritious and tasty nuts. They contain lots of nutrients and antioxidants that can help to protect the body from disease or cancer

Walnuts are among the most popular types of nuts in the world. They are used in various dishes, such as salads, baked goods, or even candies. They have a creamy texture and a high-fat content that make them crunchy when you bite into them.

The brown color of walnuts is due to their high amount of pigment called tannins that give walnuts their dark brown color.

20. White Coffee

White coffee is a drink that is getting popular all over the world. It has been promoted as a healthy beverage and it is made from milk, sugar, and coffee beans.

White coffee is brown colored because of the addition of caramel color. The color comes from the chemical reaction between white sugar and cream when heated in water.

21. Whole Wheat Pasta

Whole Wheat Pasta is a type of pasta that is made with whole-grain flour and water. It is typically brown in color, which makes it easy to separate from regular white pasta because it has a different texture and absorbs less liquid.

Whole wheat pasta is becoming more popular as people try to cut their carbs while still staying healthy because they can use this type of pasta in place of white spaghetti without guilt.