5 Best Canned Guava (And How To Use It)

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Guava is an absolutely delicious, juicy, and flavor-packed floral tropical fruit. It has always been popular, but people are finding more and more unique ways you can use it in savory and sweet dishes.

Unfortunately, it is a seasonal ingredient that isn’t available everywhere in the United States. So, the next best thing would be canned guava!

But what exactly makes a good canned guava product? First, you should look for products that only contain guava, water, and sugar (sugar syrup). Then, the cans should be undamaged, relatively affordable for what you get, and in the form you want (whole, half, diced, shells, etc.).

Today, we will look at some of the best-canned guava products you can easily find online. Then, we’ll also take a quick look at how you can use your canned guava and how to prepare it for different scenarios.

What Goes Into Canned Guava?


Guava is a very common tropical fruit that can be found in most parts of the world.

Unfortunately, in the United States, they are mainly imported, highly seasonal, and often very expensive. Finding fresh guava is next to impossible during most of the year.

So, why don’t you use guava juice? Well, first of all, guava juice is highly artificial and processed. Like most juices, it is mostly made from orange or apple juice and flavored accordingly.

Secondly, some require whole guava. This could be for a fruit salsa, a guava compote, or a simple garnish. Whatever the reason, juice, puree, and jam won’t make the cut.

So, your best alternative for fresh guava is a canned alternative. But here’s the kicker — there aren’t that many canned guava products on the market! At least not in the United States.

So, we’ve searched far and wide to give you the best options out there. Not all of them are available on Amazon, and you will need to pay quite a bit for shipping. But it truly is worth it — even more so if you buy in bulk!

Canned guava is always preserved in sugar syrup. You can also find them stored in glass jars, but cans usually have a longer shelf life and are more shelf stable.

As the guavas sit inside the sugar syrup, they naturally absorb this sweetness. Ultimately, you are left with a super-sweet fruit. This means that the way you use them will often have to change too.

Best Ways To Use Canned Guava

Fresh guava is already a very sweet fruit. So, when it has been preserved in a sugar syrup, it creates an even sweeter flavor profile. So, as we’ve mentioned, you are more limited in how you use it.

Canned guava works best in dessert recipes or drinks. These items already contain sweeteners. So, it is very easy to take some granulated sugar (or other sweeteners) out of the recipe.

You can use canned guava to make pie or tart fillings. They are also great for textured toppings, making jams, and other compotes or purees.

Guava can also be incorporated (whole or blended) in baked goods such as muffins, bread and butter puddings, and cheesecakes.

If you want to use the sweetened canned guava in a liquid form, it will be easy to incorporate into guava-flavored custards, mousses, frosting, glazes, and icing.

Because canned guava is so incredibly sweet, it doesn’t work well with many savory recipes.

You shouldn’t substitute fresh guava with sweetened guava in salads, stews, or soups — they will create an overly sweet dish when it’s actually supposed to be fruity.

However, you can use canned guava in basting sauces, marinades, and salad dressings. It is very easy to adjust the flavors to avoid an overly sweet sauce. Guava BBQ sauce is one of our favorite savory recipes to make!

How To Choose The Best Canned Guava Products

Now, because there aren’t many options available, it’s a little bit difficult to be picky. Nevertheless, here are some key features that you should look out for!


Ideally, canned or preserved guava should only contain fresh guava and sugar syrup — that’s technically all that you need. If the ingredients list contains a bunch of additives, it won’t be as good as freshly preserved guavas.

And, as we always recommend, check the packaging for any allergen warnings. Some people are highly allergic to (for example) nuts. They cannot even have products that were manufactured in a facility with nuts!


There are many preserved guava products out there. Today, we are specifically looking for preserved guava fruits — not guava paste, guava puree, or guava juice.

The most common form of canned guava you can find in the United States is guava shells: these are peeled guava with the inner seeds removed.

Then, you also get guava halves (which is what we like best).

We couldn’t find any guava canned halves manufacturer in the United States. Instead, we found a website that imports South African foods. Guava halves are extremely popular there and you can find many different options!

Price Vs Quantity

As we’ve mentioned, some products will need to be imported. So, they are usually more expensive than what you can find locally.

Always consider whether the price is worth the amount you are getting. Canned guava is still not a very cheap item considering how “foreign” it is, but you shouldn’t break the bank trying to buy some.

Don’t Buy Or Accept Dented Cans

This is, unfortunately, something you don’t have much control over if you order online. If you do receive damaged cans, send them back immediately.

If a can is dented it could have been exposed to bacteria through tiny tears in the metal. If bacteria enter the guava can, they will rapidly multiply and cause the contents to spoil before you’ve even opened it.

Best Canned Guava

Below we have listed our favorite canned guava products. The list is short, but these are not the only options that are available out there.

However, they are by far the best ones (in our opinion at least) — plus they ship to most areas in the United States!

You can also use our buyer’s guide above to help you choose an alternative product, but we really do think these are the best options for canned guava.

1. KOO Guava Halves In Syrup

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This is hands-down the best canned guava product if you are looking for solid halves with their seeds. We have had it many times before and it’s actually become a staple product in our pantry!

KOO is a South African canned goods brand that produces thousands of these per day. And this specific product has been made for decades!

You can buy them from Aubergine Foods, an online store based in the United States that sells South African products.

The can itself isn’t very expensive, which is surprising considering it’s imported. You will need to ship it and it may take a week or two. However, if you can plan ahead at all, or you’re just looking to stock up, buy a couple of these at a time.

You can also find KOO Guava Halves In Light Syrup on their website!

2. Jego Guava Shells In Syrup

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These canned guavas aren’t halves or whole — they are hollowed-out guava halves that can be used as a serving bowl.

While they won’t make great slices or have the texture from the seeds, they will still be perfectly fine for finely cubed or blended guava recipes.

These shells are more expensive than the halves mentioned above — they are imported from Ecuador, which could explain it, but there are also options to buy in bulk, which works out to be a little cheaper.

3. Rhodes Guava Halves In Syrup

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This is another South African canned product that can be found on the Aubergine website.

As we’ve said, canned guava is an extremely popular item in South African cuisine, so they sell out quickly.

This option is exactly the same as the previous canned guava halves, but Rhodes (the brand) in general is a little bit cheaper — it’s literally just a brand thing according to some South African friends of ours.

But hey, it’s always good to have a backup plan!

4. Ancel Guava Shells In Heavy Syrup

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Next up, we have more guava halves. These are local products from Miami. They are only made from fresh guava, sugar, and water, like properly canned guava should be.

From what we can tell, these are good quality, but they are hard to find. Not to mention, all we could get on Amazon were bulk options.

This isn’t a bad thing if you need to buy a bulk amount. But if you are looking for single cans, choose any of the products we have listed above instead.

5. Goya Cascos De Guayaba Guava Shells

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And finally, we end on another canned guava shells product.

This one, however, is probably the most expensive out of all the options today. It’s still a great product, but it shouldn’t be your go-to option.

This is another product imported from Ecuador that is available for purchase in single units.

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