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All About the Italian Honey Fig

The Italian Honey Fig, also known as the Ficus carica, is renowned for its flavor, texture, and health benefits. This fig variety is native to Italy and widely cultivated throughout the country due to its popularity.

Keep reading to learn all about this delicious fig variety!

Looking to buy an Italian Honey fig tree? Check availability.

Italian Honey figs.


The Italian Honey Fig is characterized by its thin, delicate skin, which ranges from light green to dark purple, depending on the stage of ripeness.

It is small, about 2 inches long, and has a pear-like shape. Once cut open, its flesh is a deep pink color.



The Italian Honey Fig is sweet and juicy, with a subtle honey-like flavor, which lends it its name. The fig seeds are also edible and add a slight crunch to the overall texture of the fruit.

One of the reasons why this fig variety is so popular is its versatility. It can be eaten fresh or used in various sweet and savory dishes. It also pairs well with other fruits, as well as with cheeses, meats, and nuts.

Preparation and Storage

To prepare your figs to be eaten fresh, rinse them gently in cool water to remove any dirt without damaging the fig’s delicate skin. Then, pat them dry, and use a sharp knife to cut off the stem of each fig.

Italian Honey Figs are best enjoyed fresh. If you want to store them, use a plastic bag and place your figs in the coldest part of your refrigerator for up to two days. They can also be frozen for 10-12 months.

Dehydrating Figs

Dried figs.
Dried figs.

Dried figs are especially convenient because they can be stored for more extended periods and eaten on the go as a snack.

  1. First, wash and prepare the figs.
  2. Next, preheat your oven to 140-170°F. The lower the temperature, the longer it will take to dry the figs, but the slower drying time will help retain the figs’ flavor and nutritional value.
  3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and arrange the fig slices, making sure they are not touching or overlapping.
  4. Place the baking sheet in the oven and open the door slightly to allow moisture to escape. Turn the oven on and off periodically to maintain the desired temperature.
  5. Check the figs periodically and rotate the baking sheet if necessary for even drying. It may take 12-24 hours to fully dry the figs.

Once the figs are thoroughly dried, remove them from the oven and allow them to cool completely. Store the figs in an airtight container in a cool, dry place for up to six months.


Roasted figs with honey.
Roasted figs.

One of our favorite ways to eat Italian Honey Figs is by cooking them in a savory recipe. This fig pizza is a delicious option for a Friday night dinner with friends or family.

Honey Fig Jam is a great way to incorporate figs into snacks or appetizers, paired with cheese and crackers, or spread on toast. It’s delicious and quite easy to make.

This delicious Honey Glazed Halloumi Fig Salad is a great, healthy lunch option. It’s refreshing and nutritious and the perfect combination of sweet and savory.

Health Benefits

In addition to its delicious taste, the Italian Honey Fig is packed with nutrients and health benefits.

It is a good source of fiber, which is essential for digestive health. It also contains vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin C, potassium, and calcium, which are essential for overall health.

Another health benefit of the Italian Honey Fig is its high antioxidant content. These compounds protect the body against damage from free radicals, which can contribute to developing chronic diseases such as cancer and heart disease.

Figs are also rich in natural sugars that are quickly absorbed by the body and, therefore, are a great energy source.

Where to Purchase Italian Honey Figs

Ripe figs.

Italian Honey Figs are very popular and can be purchased from various sources. The fruits can be bought anywhere from farmers’ markets and specialty fruit markets to grocery stores and online retailers.

When selecting Italian Honey Figs, choosing fruit that is ripe but not overripe is important. The skin should be soft and slightly wrinkled, and the flesh should be tender and juicy. If the skin is too firm, the fig may not be fully ripe; if it is too soft or mushy, it may be overripe.

Growing an Italian Honey Fig

Small green figs on a tree.

Italian Honey Figs are easy to grow but require some care.

Fig trees prefer a sunny, sheltered location that is protected from strong winds and also need well-draining soil that is rich in organic matter.

The best time to plant Italian Honey Figs is in the early spring when the soil has warmed up, and the risk of frost has passed. Make sure to space the trees 10-15 feet apart to give them room to grow.

Italian Honey Figs require regular watering, especially during hot, dry weather. Water deeply once a week and more during periods of drought. Fertilize regularly with a balanced, slow-release fertilizer.

Prune your fig tree annually in late winter or early spring to remove dead or diseased wood and encourage new growth.

Italian Honey Figs can be prone to pests and diseases like fig rust and fig mosaic virus. Regularly inspect your trees for signs of damage, and treat any problems promptly.

When to Harvest Your Italian Honey Figs

Woman using pruning shears to harvest a fig.

Italian Honey Figs are ready to harvest when they’re soft to the touch, and the skin begins to wrinkle. They may not develop their full flavor if you pick them too early.

To harvest the figs, use a sharp knife or pruning shears to cut the stem close to the fruit. Figs are delicate and can bruise easily, so handle them gently when harvesting. Place them in a basket lined with a soft cloth to avoid bruising.

Figs ripen quickly and attract birds and insects if left on the tree too long. Harvest your figs regularly, every 2-3 days, to ensure they are not overripe or damaged.

Where to Buy a Tree

A green, immature fig on a tree.

Honey Fig Trees are also available at plant nurseries and online retailers if you’d prefer to grow your figs at home.

We highly recommend the Italian Honey fig sold by one of our favorites, Stark Brothers. They’ve been in the plant business for over 200 years, so they know a thing or two about fruit trees!

A Delicious, Versatile Fig Variety

Ripe figs.

Italian Honey Figs can be grown and prepared fairly easily, and are a great addition to any recipe, and a healthy snack that can be enjoyed in countless ways.

To learn more about other fig varieties, visit our Fig Tree page.