Fruity Brain Teaser? Math Problem With Apples, Bananas, Coconuts Is Harder Than It Looks

A tricky brain teaser filled with pictures of apples, bananas, and coconuts has recently been stumping quite a few people on Facebook.

At first glance, it may seem as if the answers are easy giveaways — especially when you focus on the very first line.

brain teaser

When you look at an equation that features three apples which equal 30, which was analyzed on The Problem Site, chances are that the average Algebra student would quickly fill in the blanks with the number “10.”

10 + 10 + 10 = 30

Keeping in mind that each individual apple has the value of 10, everything else apparently seems to fall into place.

The second line claims that two bunches of bananas along with an apple equals 18, which is why it’s easy to think that the two bananas equal 8 (which means that each individual bundle has a value of 4).

10 + 4 + 4 = 18

The third line claims that a bundle of bananas (with an assumed value of 4) minus coconuts equals 2. Therefore, it is easy to assume that the coconut has an individual value of 2.

4 – 2 = 2

As of right now, then, here’s what you may have so far when it comes to the individual value of each fruit:

  • Apples = 10 each
  • Bananas = 4 each
  • Coconuts = 2 each

Therefore, solving the final line of this confusing brain teaser may seem a little too easy.

1 coconut (2) + 1 apple (10) + 1 banana (4) = 16


If 16 was your final answer, you might honestly think that you are correct. If so, you are not the only one…that was unfortunately mistaken!

There is one particular factor to this confusing brain teaser that you more than likely overlooked the first time around. What is it? Pay close attention to the bananas.

How many individual bananas are found in each bundle? Each bundle has four bananas. That is, of course, until you get to the bananas on the final line of this fruity brain teaser.

Within that particular banana bundle, there are only three bananas.

brain teaser

That’s not the only fruit that had a drastic makeover at some point throughout the progression of this brain teaser.

Take a quick look at the coconuts on each line. On the third line of the brain teaser, the coconut was split into two halves. Both halves were seen in the picture, right?

However, when you move down to the last line of the puzzle, there is only one half of the coconut that is pictured.

How does this change the math of this fruity brain teaser? A bundle of four bananas has a value of 4, which means that each individual banana has a value of 1. Therefore, a bundle of 3 bananas represents a value of 3, not 4.

The same principle is applied to the coconut. If a full coconut has a value of 2, then one-half of that coconut only has a value of 1.

With this in mind, the math of the final line of this fruity brain teaser looks like this:

“1 + 10 + 3 = 14”

Even though most people that shared their responses to the fruity brain teaser seemed to agree with 16, there were some that paid attention to the detail of the missing fruit and guessed the correct answer.

There are quite a few different brain teasers and puzzles that have been circulating online, especially on Facebook. As previously reported by the Inquisitr, there are popular puzzles based on such topics as rock bands from the ’90s as well as a picture puzzle with hidden words.

[Image Credit: Dollar Photo Club]