:When we think of cooking with seasonal fruits and vegetables, it is usually summertime and we’re looking for locally-grown fresh foods like zucchinis, berries, stone fruits, or herbs. But it’s also important to consider cooking with fruits and vegetables that are in-season during the winter!
There is a bounty of winter-grown foods that can be incorporated into your cooking during the cold winter months, keeping your dishes fresh even when there’s snow on the ground. Beets, brussel sprouts, winter squash, kale, potatoes, and cabbage are just a few fresh vegetables that you can enjoy from local farms in the winter-time. There are even winter-grown apple and pear varieties that make refreshing winter snacks or additions to seasonal salads!
Tomatoes and Cucumbers usually make it on the list of foods traditionally harvested and enjoyed fresh in the summer, but thanks to greenhouse farms like ours, these fresh foods can now also be enjoyed during the winter! We produce Tomatoes and Cucumbers every month of the year, making them the perfect ingredient to add to hearty winter dishes.
Benefits of Buying In-Season Foods
Whether it’s summer or winter, there are many benefits to enjoying in-season fruits and vegetables – these fresh foods are often:
- Marked by freshness;
- Full of flavor;
- Grown at a local farm; and
- Shipped to grocery stores with a local fleet
With the promise of high-flavor, exceptional freshness, and local roots, buying in-season fruits and vegetables whenever possible just makes sense!
Here are 5 of our favorite recipes that feature some seasonal ingredients harvested in the winter-time.
5 Creative Dishes Featuring Seasonal Winter Foods
Below you will find 5 of our favorite recipes that feature winter-grown fruits and vegetables – including a few nutrient-packed dishes created by Noelle Martin, one of our Registered Dietitian partners and a healthy eating expert!
Roasted Pepper & Butternut Squash Soup
Winter squash are a delicious and nutritious ingredient to enjoy in a host of recipes, but one of Noelle’s favorite ways to enjoy them is in a steaming pot of soup! This Roasted Pepper & Butternut Squash Soup recipe features roasted Bell Peppers, roasted butternut squash, and a hearty helping of cashews, making a creamy and flavor-filled meal that will keep your family toasty warm.
Game Day Nachos
During the winter months, it’s typical for us to spend our free time with family and friends cheering on our favorite sports teams in the evenings or on weekends. One of the best ways to make these gatherings even more fun is with tasty finger foods and snacks. Noelle developed an irresistible Game Day Nachos recipe that is loaded with classic nacho toppings, but it swaps out tortilla chips for potassium-packed potatoes. And you get bonus points for using seasonal ingredients!
Pear Cucumber Salad
Many pear varieties are harvested in the fall and winter months, making them an excellent option for seasonal salads or on-the-go snacks. Our Pear Cucumber Salad features two fresh foods that can be enjoyed during the winter months. If you’re looking for other ways to enjoy pears in the winter-time, try mixing them into a warm dessert, creating a jam or spread, or adding them into your favorite fruit salad.
Grilled Sweet Potato with Bell Peppers
How do you impress your house guests with a fresh appetizer in the winter-time? By loading a seasonal veggie with tasty toppings! Grilled Sweet Potatoes with Bell Peppers are quick to assemble and a crowd-pleasing finger-food. As a winter-grown root vegetable, sweet potatoes are a rich source of fiber and are high in beta-carotene, but their sweet taste provides a high-flavor eating experience – especially when grilled!
Tropical Kale Smoothie
A well-known superfood, kale is a popular leafy green used to give salads, soups, and smoothies a major nutrition boost. Adding kale to a seasonal salad in the winter-time is a no brainer, but if you’re missing the warmth of bright summer days, blend up a Tropical Kale Smoothie to help you escape the winter blues! Kale is also an excellent addition to frittatas, buddha bowls, or stir fries.
Cozy Up With A Warm Meal This Winter
There are many fresh foods that you can incorporate into your winter cooking to keep your dishes fresh and seasonal. Using seasonal ingredients in the winter-time will not only keep your dishes flavorful, but they will also allow you to support local farms, even in the coldest months of the year!