By: Caitlin Fields, Senior Dietetics Student at the University of Maryland*
With summer coming to a close and fall just around the corner, it’s time to start thinking about those delicious fall fruits and vegetables! Save some money and improve your diet by eating in season this fall. The following are some of the fruits and vegetables that you can look forward to in the upcoming months at The Farmers Market at Maryland.
- Apples – Apples are high in vitamin C and fiber, and are great in salads, baked goods, or as a healthy snack with peanut butter or simply on their own. Apples will stay fresh in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
- Broccoli – Broccoli is low in calories and an excellent source of Vitamin C, Vitamin K, and fiber. It is also rich in folate and phytonutrients. Serve roasted, sautéed, steamed, or blanched. You can refrigerate broccoli in a plastic bag for up to five days or cut up and freeze for later use.
- Brussels sprouts – Brussels sprouts are another nutrient-dense vegetable high in Vitamin C, Vitamin K and fiber. They are delicious roasted, sautéed, or blanched. Refrigerate brussels sprouts in a plastic bag for up to five days.
- Butternut squash – Rich in Vitamin A and Vitamin C, this quintessential fall vegetable is also a great source of fiber and B-complex vitamins. It is delicious as butternut squash soup or cut up and roasted with sage. Store whole, uncut butternut squash in a cool, dry place for up to a month.
- Cauliflower – Cauliflower is a good source of Vitamin K, Vitamin C, B-complex vitamins, and folate. It is excellent roasted with olive oil, garlic and marjoram. You can also serve it raw or boil and mash cauliflower as a substitute for mashed potatoes. Refrigerate cauliflower in a plastic bag for up to five days.
- Grapes – Grapes are high in Vitamin C, Vitamin K, fiber, and antioxidants. Grapes are a perfect substitute for candy to curb a sweet tooth and are easy to take on-the-go. Wash thoroughly before serving and refrigerate in a ventilated plastic bag for up to a week.
- Mushrooms – Mushrooms are a good source of potassium, Vitamin C, Vitamin B6 and Vitamin B12. Serve raw in salads, grilled or in your favorite soups. Refrigerate them in a paper bag up to three days or a week depending on the variety. Wipe mushrooms with a damp paper towel just before using.
- Pears – Pears are an excellent source of fiber and a good source of Vitamin C, Vitamin K and potassium. Enjoy them as a healthy snack, added to your lunch salads, or with your favorite low-fat cheese. Let pears ripen at room temperature and then refrigerate ripe for up to five days.
- Pumpkin – Pumpkin is an excellent source of Vitamin A, fiber and antioxidants. Additionally, pumpkin seeds are loaded with protein, minerals and fiber. Veggify your falls baked goods by adding some pumpkin, or add some pumpkin seeds to a homemade trail mix. Pumpkin can be purchased fresh or canned and can be stored in a cool, dry place for up to two months.
- Sweet Potatoes – Nutrient-dense sweet potatoes are packed with Vitamin A, Vitamin C potassium, folate and B-complex vitamins. They are great roasted, baked with skin on, boiled and mashed, or as baked sweet potato fries. Store sweet potatoes in a cool, dark place up to two weeks
To try some healthy, new recipes for your favorite fall fruits and vegetables, check out the following resources:
- In Season: Fall (Cooking Light)
- Healthy Harvest: 10 Tasty Fruit and Veggie Recipes (Delish.com)
- Fall Flavors for the Dinner Table (Chicago Tribune)
- Our Best Apple Recipes (Cooking Light)
What are some of your fall favorites? Share with us in the comments below.