Mission Olive
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Though it has Old World ancestors, the particular type of Olive called a Mission Olive is native to California. It was brought to the U.S. by Franciscan monks in the 1700s. The monks planted Olive trees in the gardens next to their missions, moving slowly but steadily north, along what is now known as El Camino Real. Mission Olives may be related genetically to Picholine Marocaine, the main type of Olive grown in Morocco. They are fairly small, and are harvested both when unripe (green) and fully ripe (black).


Mission Olives are available all year long.


If possible it is best to sample the Mission Olives you are considering before buying them. Many better stores are happy to let you try one (or two), which can save you from discovering you have made a bad pick when you get home.


Mission Olives should be stored in Brine or Oil. If you purchase them dry, Brine or Oil should be added to help them last longer. If purchased in unopened cans or jars, Mission Olives can be stored at room temperature for as long as two years. 

Once opened, they can be kept either at room temperature or refrigerated for a number of weeks, as long as they are totally submerged in their holding solution. A harmless mold sometimes forms on top of them; just spoon it off before using the Mission Olives. If you add anything perishable to the Mission Olives, such as HerbsCheese, etc., they should be refrigerated, and will last as long as the perishable ingredient’s shelf life.

Culinary Uses

They are what is called “dual purpose” Olives, raised for use both as table Olives and for Olive Oil.

Mission Olives can also be the central ingredient in a Salad, or one of twenty elements. SlicedChoppedPureed to a paste in a Tapenade spread on Bread or Crackers, made into a Relish, used in Omelets, on Pizzas, in Pasta Sauces and Pasta Salads, or an essential element in many MeatGameFishSeafood and Poultry dishes—Olives are at home almost anywhere in the kitchen.

Portion Size

1-3 oz of Mission Olives per person.


BasilBay LeafCuminOreganoRosemaryThymeTarragonSaltPepperAlmondsPine NutsPecansButterCheese, Cream Cheese, Yogurt, Bell Peppers, GarlicOnionsYellow OnionsRed OnionsGreen OnionsShallotsParsleyTomatoesPoultryChicken, Fish, Lamb, Scallops, Veal, OilsOlive OilVinegar, Bread, Rice

Nutritional Value USDA
Amount Per 100g
Calories 115
%Daily Value*
Total Fat 10g
Saturated Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 7g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 735mg
Potassium 8mg
Total Carbohydrate 6g
Dietary Fiber 3g
Sugars 0g
Protein 0g
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Gluten Free


Low Fat


Low Calorie