3 Main Differences Between Green and Black Olives

Photo by Jeremy Bezanger on Unsplash

Olives can be used to take a long list of different dishes to a whole new level, but they’re not all created equal. Olives come in two colors (black and green) and there are several factors that make them different, starting with these three.


The main difference between these two types of olives is connected to their ripeness. Black olives are ripened before being harvested, giving them enough time to achieve the darker shade, while green ones are picked before ripening.


After being picked, both black and green olives are usually soaked in lye and then cured in brine to reduce bitterness. Despite the curing process, green olives usually tend to be bitterer than black olives, because they contain more oil and less salt than green olives.

Their taste also depends on the preparation method, because they can be stuffed with all sorts of different ingredients, including garlic, cheese, tomatoes, almonds, and so on.


Olives are technically a fruit and they get softer as they ripen. This basically means that black olives are much softer because they’re picked fully ripe. Green olives are much firmer, and that’s one of the reasons why they’re often used for stuffing.