Among all of the bouquets produced by the myriad of terpenes profiles found in top shelf herb today the fruity ones get us the most excited.
Sure, every serious patient should have a few different varieties of strains on hand. We like keeping stocked up on:
- One heavy hitting Indica dominant strain for end of work days/stress relief
- One more energetic clear-headed Sativa dominant strain for early day sessions, and productivity-friendly sessions
- One strain somewhere in between, maybe it’s new, a big seller, or just as a unique funk worth exploring further
When choosing a new strain it’s good to lean heavily on the advice of your budtender, at least if you are shopping at some place reputable and local, which, you really SHOULD be doing. Support local businesses yo!
After laying out what you’re looking for your budtender will usually offer a few different options for your consideration as a shopper. In states like Oregon this usually means hauling out giant glass jars full of tons of buds and letting patients stick their noses over them for a big deep whiff to better tell whether they vibe with that strain or not.
Some of the most mouthwatering strains are those with fruit notes, because they often smell flowery, fruity, and sometimes like straight up candy.
Below we highlight some of the best smelling, best tasting, smoothest smoking fruit-heavy strains worth exploring the next time you pop into your local dispensary.
Why Does My Weed Smell Fruity?
In case you’re curious, the reason WHY these strains smell like fruit is because many of them actually contain the same terpenes found in those exact fruits! Yes, strain flavors and thus names aren’t complete malarkey, they’re actually often very reflective of their chemical composition.
Limonene for example, is very common in the bright and fresh smelling sativa-dominant strains. It is also found in many citrus fruits, like lemon for example!
Linalool is another floral, sweet smelling terpene with calming effects and is found naturally in lavender, basil, and a variety of other exotic herbs.
Collectively these terpenes work together (commonly referred to as the entourage effect) to create a complex blend of sensations that are somehow familiar and new and delightful at the same time.
Know Your Fruity Roots Young Fruitster
Tangie is at the top of this list because of you trace most super-fruit smelling or tasting strains lineage back long enough there is a high likelihood you will run into a Tangie descendent somewhere along the way.
We suspect Tangie’s popularity is at least partly due to it’s ying-yang nature of balancing soft sweet orange notes from the California Orange parent strain, with the subtle, non-offensive twang of Skunk-1. Skunk-1 is itself a storied parent tracing it’s lineage to pre-70’s Afghani, Mexican, and Columbian strains.
California Orange is itself a star child of the 80’s and a go-to for newer smokers because of its very round, very soft hitting near perfectly balanced hybrid nature.
That skunky lineage from Skunk #1, softened by a very strong, and we’d say dominating, big ripe orange nose and flavor from California Orange, make Tangie soft, inviting, but not a complete bore. This has lead to massive popularity in producing other new hybrids in the United States like the titan that is Tropicana Cookies, as well as stood it’s own as a celebrity of the Amsterdam coffee shop scene for decades.
Tangie is one of the best fruity strains to start with because if you can identify and understand this terpene profile then you’ll have an easier time understanding more exotic strains of today who have simply built off the fun fruity foundation laid down by the humble Tangie strain.
Widely available, usually fairly priced, and a guaranteed good time for fruit lovers Tangie had to be the first strain on this list.
For Balanced Candy Shop Flashbacks
Runtz was the Leafly strain of the year for 2020 and it’s easy to see why. This is a potent hybrid originally was released in 2017 but has continually grown in popularity every year since and will no doubt be a banger in 2021 as well.
The Runtz strain comes in a variety of colors, leaning more purple/pink during warmer months and turning a deeper dark purple in fall as the plant matures.
The smell of Runtz is pretty much on par with opening up a box of the candy, meaning you get a very sweet smelling, almost artificial/corn-syrupy in intensity, blending a variety of fruits, like lemon, lime, grape, and strawberry. Not so much banana.
The taste is actually very reflective of the smell, something you can’t always assume with other strains. Runts has a strong fruity lineage that counts Grapefruit, Grape Ape, Sherbert, Thin Mint GSC, Zkittles, and Gelato as ancestors.
The Chillaxed Mother of Runtz
Runtz wouldn’t be what it is today without the lineage and strong fruity aromas imparted by its parent strain, Zkittlez. While Runtz is a more balanced hybrid Zkittlez is a more indica-leaning hybrid generally chosen for a more relaxing fruity high.
Zkittlez itself is becoming a bit of an OG, bread from the infamous Grape Ape and Grapefruit strains, this proud little plant has won awards for best indica, including first place in the 2016 Emerald Cup as well as first place in the 2015 Cannabis Cup in San Fran before that.
Zkittlez aren’t too crazy with the colors, with a solid green thick body and tasty orange hairs abounding. There is a pronounced grapefruit flavor that is blended with softer berry notes of blackberry, strawberry, and slightly over-ripe grapes.
Overall Zkittlez is a luxurious strain great for a sweet dessert sure to delight any guests you may have or good for just chilling out with friends.
Sirius Black Strain
Welches Grape Juice In Herb Form
Sirius Black by Oregon Breeders Group doesn’t get nearly enough hype, perhaps due to it’s limited availability. Grown in Oregon this is a heavy hitting indica dominant strain with an insanely grape-like smell and taste as a result of it’s rich myrcene content.
It’s also some “siriusly” purple stuff, so purple that in lower light it looks almost black. In full light the flowers look almost artificial in their purple vibrance. The smoke is always sweet and the effects equally playful, relaxing the patient without fully sedating and imparting easy laughs.
If you visit Oregon, or if this strain makes its way to your state (we sure hope it does) then pick up a few grams and give it a try, or just get a whole ounce because we’re pretty sure you’re going to love it.
Start The Day Right With This Balanced Citrusy Strain
Mimosa is a best seller at dispensaries across the country and with good reason, it looks beautiful, smells citrusy and refreshing, and imparts a relatively clear-headed high with citrus notes all along.
Being sativa dominant mimosa is a refreshing early morning zone-locker-in type bud and is great for other daytime activities, like picnics, hikes ,and dare we say it, pool side lounging?
Mimosa’s parent strains of Purple Punch and Clementine balance the sweet with the citrus and many people, particularly those vaping at lower temperatures describe smoking mimosa like drinking a fresh squeezed cup of orange juice.
Wedding Cake Strain
Baked Cake Goodness Not Just for Weddings
Wedding cake has been unstoppable in its popularity in recent years, winning Strain of the Year by Leafly users in 2019. This full-bodied bud is also referred to as just “pink cookies” in Canada and is slowly taking the world by storm.
Being indica-leaning this is a relaxing strain, as the dessert-name would imply, making it great for calm evening sessions with the TV, record player, or just killing time with good company as the limonene and balanced nature doesn’t interfere with clear thinking and maintaining a train of thought.
Wedding Cakes lineage can be traced back to parents Cherry Pie and Girl Scout Cookies, two already very dessert-rich terpene profiles which marry beautifully in the compact light green, almost yellowish-tinged Wedding Cake flowers.
Being a cake, it’s not all sweet fruit notes here, there is a more earthy undercurrent, particularly in terms of taste, that lend a more full-bodied feel to Wedding Cake that can leave you licking your lips for more.
Sunset Sherbert Strain
Candy sweet royal genetics
Sherbert is a popular strain, one of those strong indica-dominant flowers that is a perfect blend of soft, sweet enticing fruit aromas, including citrus, ripened berry, and fruit candy, balanced by a hint of “well hello there!” fuel tinge on the nostril.
This makes sense given the Sherbert strain itself can draw its lineage to OG Kush, Cherry Pie, Durban Poison and Pink Panties. These parent strains have imparted Sherbert with a nice balanced full-body high with a pleasant relatively clear headedness, probably thanks to the Durban Poison’s heavy sativa tendencies.
Sherbert’s well-rounded nature has also made it the parent to a whole host of new strains, including the hotter-than-ever Gelato strain, which has taken the rap world by storm and is thus very popular, but respect must be given to the Sherbert parent (along with Thin Mint GSC) that make Gelatos mesmerizing nature a possibility.
Pineapple Express Strain
More than a stoner movie, albeit a good stoner movie
No strain perhaps outside of Girl Scout Cookies or Durban Poison is as famous outside of smoker circles as the one and only Pineapple Express.
The actual origins, like many strains, is hard to pin down with much precision. G13 Labs seed bank claim to have created the original Pineapple Express in the early/mid 2000’s, when they bred Hawaiian strain with the ever popular Trainwreck to produce the sativa-dominant hybrid.
Ironically, despite the claims in the movie to be the “dopest of the dope”, Pineapple Express has been eclipsed by even more tropical strains, but it has also cemented itself in popular culture as a strong, smooth smoke, which apparently some people will kill over.
There is a soft fruity smell to the nose, fruits like pineapple and mango both coming through, however the taste itself is more piney and traditional sativa-like in its profile. The high is a slow burn, getting you high without you realizing it.
Users report general positive vibes, uplifting experiences, and a more clear headed energetic high, making it great for adventures. For us it was a nice blend of fruit and skunk, pleasant, friendly, but not hollow.. kind of like the movie come to think of it..
A Hurricane of Fruits To Knock You Down, Into Your Couch
Slurricane has developed a reputation as a sweet smelling tropical flower that packs a punch, tropical punch that is. As a cross of Do-Si-Dos and Purple Punch you get that nice fruit nose up front followed my a more creamy malty mouth flavor from the Do-Si-Dos.
Being a big indica-dominant strain this is reported by users to be a great “end of a long stressful workday” decompression smoke. If you are a fan of other big grape flavored Purple Punch children strains then Slurricane should be on your shopping list. Sure, many consider it an “exotic” and that shouldn’t make you feel self-conscious about joining a hype train, because the hyper is very real here.
Slurricane can be hard to find, it seems that In House Genetics has a relatively limited supply which is a bummer because being regularly tested at 28% or higher THC levels, combined with an insane tropical-berry flavor profile makes this a big hitter strain sure to get fruit-monsters drooling at the first whiff of an open flower jar.
Fruitier Tropicana Without The Cookies
Terple is a descendent of the above mentioned Slurricane, being a cross between Slurricane and the fan favorite Tropicana Cookies. Slurricane itself is Do-Si-Dos bred with Purple Punch. Personally we feel the Purple Punch is the more dominant of the two with potent near-spoiled purple grape smell that follows through in flavor with minimal cookie taste/mouth feel.
As such, if you take the Purple Punch-leaning nature of Slurricane, and cross that with Tropicana Cookies what happens? Well you get Terple! No, it’s not a revolutionary experience, which one might assume combining the sweet fruity nature of the Purple Punch lineage with the Tangie dominant nature of Tropicana Cookies.
Fruity it is, but combining Purple Punch-leaning Slurricane with Tangie-leaning Tropicana Cookies produces a slightly fruitier, less artificial candied smoking experience.
If you like fruit (real fruit, not fake fruit) and were never a huge fan of the “bready” cookie notes of some crosses then Terple is the strain you need to check out. Oh, and it’s flecked with purple pops of color which means it has great bag appeal if you’re looking to flex on your homies.
As Purple As They Come: Grape Lovers Rejoice
Purple Punch, where to start. This is a classic strain that forms the bedrock of many great hybrids and is available in most mid tier dispensaries, at least in Washington and Oregon where it’s a perpetual fan favorite. Why? Well, first Purple Punch is one of the most “you get what you smell” strains we’ve tried.
The nose isn’t particularly complex, you’re not getting any gaseous fumes, not funky cheese, heck it’s pretty void of any pine astringency at all. Instead what you get is a deep, rich, almost spoiled dark purple dinner grapes with a fist-full of perfectly ripe blueberries, the kind that you can smell the sugars, not the tart little under-ripened ones that go so good with cereal.
Purple Punch is an indica-leaning cross between Larry OG and Grand Daddy Purps. Larry OG is as the name eludes, an storied strain that has been a west coast favorite for decades, hailing originally from Orange County with a ripened sweet aroma, a mix of bruised orange with a base note of soft soil earthiness not letting you forget the Kush genetics.
Grand Daddy Purps on the other hand is where Purple Punch inherits its gorgeous purple hues as well as it’s no-doubt about it big sweet grape smell and flavor. Combining the earthy bruised orange of Larry OG with the Grape bomb that is Grand Daddy Purps you get perhaps one of the “grapiest” strains in Purple Punch.
Smoking a Perfectly Ripe Grapefruit
While many of the fruity strains on this list lean indica, and most of the focus/energizing strains we listed are sativas, it may come as a surprise to many that the strain referred to simply as Squirt is a 80% sativa dominant hybrid and she’s an absolute terp bomb.
Squirt was a new strain for us, only recently turned on to while seeking flower that would be great for daytime adventures but had that sweet flavor profile all flavor chasers love. We were not disappointed when we got home and loaded our Heir water pipe with some fresh ground Squirt from Fox Hollow Flora in Oregon.
This strain is a gross between Tangie and Blueberry Muffin. Tangie is the core fruit driver in Tropicana blends and probably one of the “gold standard” strains when it comes to fruity terpene profiles. As such, Tangie is up front on the nose and holds through on the palate as well when smoked.
The Blueberry Muffin parent here is also notable, not so much pure organic blueberry like Purple Punch but more of candied blueberry smell, the same aroma you get out of the oven with baked blueberry muffins where the added vanilla and sugar marry well with the blueberry fruit to produce a softer candied nose profile.
Apparently, just like mixing blue and yellow gives you green, mixing this candied blueberry lineage of the Blueberry Muffin strain with the orange-heavy tangy skunk of Tangie results in a fruity strain with a slight citrusy tinge, which is perfectly reminiscent of a well-ripened grape fruit to us, which, is what the Squirt soda aims to recreate, albeit with a bit more sugar intensity.
Squirt was a surprise, mostly because of its humble naming convention and its softer Tangie nose. However when smoked at low temps, like via a water pipe or bong with a hemp wick, there is an unmistakable citrusy body behind that light fruit introduction which makes it an absolute delight for fruity citrus lovers.
Rich Dark Fruit Oozer
Gushers, one of the biggest hype strains of 2021, had to be included in this list because of its sheer popularity, which must tell you something about the flavor profile contained within it’s rather unassuming light yellowish green and orange-hair sprinkled flowers.
This isn’t as “candied” as fruit strains built off Tangie or Purple Punch for example, it’s a different kind of fruit that’s less up front on the nose and more noticeable on the palate when smoked. Parents of Gushers include Gelato #41, which is obviously a gelato but is itself descended from Sunset Sherbet and Thin Mint Cookies, to steady stalwarts in the world of best-selling genetics.
Accompanying Gelato #41 in molding the star child that is Gushers is Triangle Kush, a dense indica-leaning strain out of Florida, a best seller in the swamp-forest triangle that is Jacksonville, Tampa Bay, and Miami. Parents are said to originate from Emerald Triangle and Hindu Kush strains, giving it that deeper earthy sweetness over the light candy-like sweetness of Tangie/Purple Punch type strains.
Gushers fruitiness is as such, not particularly bright on the nose but definitely follows through on the palate when smoked, which to some is more important than jar presence anyways. We’d rank Zkittles slightly above Gushers in terms of fruit-ness simply because Zkittles has the juice bomb Grape Ape parent. We’d then put Runtz OG just a hair over Zkittles, assuming because the Sunset Sherbet of Gelato parent found a fruity friend in the Grape Ape of the Zkittles line to produce another uniuely fruity strain in Runtz.
If you’re looking for a fun time with your friends and can swing it buying a couple grams of Gushers, Zkittles, and Runtz OG would make for a very fun taste testing session!
Gaseous Version of a Strawberry Hopped Hazy IPA
We round out this list with the ever humble yet never disappointing Strawberry Cough strain. You’ve probably seen this little guy at some point or another, because it’s a stalwart that crosses class divides and is sold up fresh from super cheap volume dispensaries all the way to higher end experience-oriented exotic-dominated upscale dispensaries.
Strawberry Cough’s lineage is a bit hazy. Most likely a cross between a Haze strain and Strawberry Fields, although some also point to an Erdbeer strain parent (itself a backcross of OG Swiss Strawberry). Genetics aside, Strawberry Cough is a unrelenting best-seller and even won the 2013 Cannabis Cup award, bred by the industry legend that is Kyle Kushman.
Kushman who as also a High Times editor previously, has gone on record saying Strawberry Cough was a product of good fortune, when he crossed a gifted clone called Strawberry Field, that had reportedly grew up next to a legitimate strawberry patch, with a haze strain (we don’t know exactly which) to produce the slightly more astringent Strawberry Cough.
It’s awards, legends, and mystery that underpin the most talked about dispensary stalwarts and this couldn’t be more true with Strawberry Cough.
This strain as the name suggest has a very soft, well-rounded fruity nose reminiscent of freshly harvested strawberries, which isn’t actually all that common in the fruit strain category. The haze adds a nice little twangy kick to it that helps balance out the 70% indica dominance.
Strawberry Cough would fall into the category of fruity OG strains that all fruit-lovers need to try at least once and if understood, will form a solid foundational bedrock of legacy fruit strains by which they can accurately compare newer fruit strains a la Runtz/Terple/Slurricane etc.
Herb CEO Summary
Fruity strains, they’re probably one of the most popular “terpene profiles” that people look for when they hop into their local dispensary. They’re light, exciting on the nose, and generally have pretty positive, uplifting properties when smoked.
They’re also a great introduction for your friends who aren’t big flower heads because they’re less scary and less rough than some of the more petrol-focused power strains out there. It’s easier to win someone over to the world of quality cannabis with a friendly recognizable scent and flavor profile (i.e fruit) than it is with something like Durban Cheese (although don’t worry, they’ll get their eventually).
We’ve smoked every single fruit strain listed above and they are thus verifiably “fruity”. Is this an end-all-be-all list? Of course not. The world of cannabis is so broad and so deep at the same time and it is continually evolving as growers are constantly experimenting and discovering “the next big thing”.
So with that said, if you’ve already hit every strain in the list above and have recommendations for other fruit-bomb flowers let us know in the comments below because your boy here is excited to expand his fruit bowl.