Take advantage of year-round fresh fruits & vegetables
Eating fruits & vegetables that are in season is healthy as fruits and vegetables that are harvested in season supply the appropriate vitamins and minerals needed in each season. For example, lemons and oranges are in season during the cooler months supplying us with the much needed vitamin C during the winter season. However, there are a few fruits & vegetables that could be considered to be in season year round. Though most fruits and vegetables have a ‘peak’ month in the year, these are generally affordable and freshly available through the year.
Carrots. These are generally available year-round but they actually have two seasons: a late spring crop and a fall crop. The fall crop usually goes into cold storage or the winter. In the spring carrots can be used to make fresh spring rolls, and in the summer carrots can be added to your smoothies & veggie trays. Moreover, in the fall & winter carrots are fantastic in stews and homemade soups/broths.
Celery. Celery’s peak season month is said to be August, though it can be grown year round. Since celery likes cool temperatures and constant moisture it is perfect to grow in the summer up north, and during the winter down in the south. This keeps celery a year round producer. Celery is excellent in soups, broths & a favorite in chicken salad.
Sweet Potatoes. Potatoes are mainly in season in October through December and are generally available year-round. Sweet potatoes are a fantastic source of natural carbohydrates and approved by Whole30 & Paleo diets. Sweet potatoes can be roasted, fried and used for desserts.
Spinach. Most spinach in the US is produced by California, Texas & New Jersey. This plant prefers cool-weather so it is planted in the early Spring and also late/early fall making it easily available year round. Spinach is a very versatile leaf rich in iron and other nutrients and mild in flavor. Spinach can be used in salads, sandwiches, pizza, pasta, & smoothies.
Onions. Typically onions are planted in the early spring but some varieties can be planted in the fall making them available year-round. Onions are fiber & folic acid. I seriously panic if I have no onions at home as I used them to season most of my foods: stew, pasta, pizza, salads & soups.
Cabbage. Because cabbage can withstand cooler temperature it is typically available year round at a great price. Cabbage is a very versatile vegetable that is very filling and rich in vitamin C. Cabbage can be used in soups, curry’s, stir-fry’s, salads, & tacos.
Kale. Since kale is a plant very resistant to frost and cooler temperatures it is also available year round. Kale can be easily grown is most temperatures. The trick with Kale is not use it as the main leaf but only very little at a time. Kale can be used in fresh salads, soups, stews & smoothies.
Mushrooms. Cultivated mushrooms are known to grow throughout the year though they peak in the fall. Mushrooms are so easy to cook with as they make the perfect topping. They can be used in sandwiches, pizzas, pastas, salads, burgers & omelettes.
Bananas. This delicious, nutritious and affordable fruit is available year round in our grocery stores making it always a safe choice to eating within season. Read 20 reasons why you need more bananas here.
Apples. Though US apples are in season from August until the start of Spring, they are available year round at supermarkets because they are easily imported. Learn more about apples here.
Kiwis. Since the harvest begins in late September through November you can be assured of having plenty of fresh, sweet California Kiwi available for winter and spring. Kiwi is fantastic in smoothies, fruit salads & parfaits.
Grapes. The best time for grapes is the fall, yet grapes can be harvested from May through October making it quite a long season! Grapes are known to be packed with antioxidants making it an excellent choice for a mid-day snack.
This guide will allow you to keep these fruits and vegetables in your grocery list and take advantage of their year-round lower prices! Of course with each season you will be able to add other fruits & vegetables to your grocery list keeping your dinner menu deliciously fresh & nutritious!