Written by contributor Krissa Jeldy of More Than Mundane.
It can be difficult to eat seasonally during the winter months, especially in colder areas.
In October, Stephanie wrote a great post on preparing for seasonal Fall and Winter eating. Eating seasonally is beneficial financially, nutritionally, and environmentally.
I also love that nature provides our bodies with what we need during each season. Take citrus, for example. Citrus is at it’s peak in the Winter months, which is also when we are usually hit with sore throats, coughs, and colds. Citrus provides us with Vitamin C, which is beneficial to our immune system.Photo by srqpix
Where to Find In-Season Produce
If you’re lucky enough to live in an area where Farmer’s Markets run year round, they are a great place to find local, in-season produce. Check here to locate Farmer’s Markets in your area.
Another option is to join a CSA. Belonging to a CSA is a great way to ensure you’re getting local, seasonal produce. I love picking up my produce box and discovering new varieties of fruits and vegetables and figuring out what to make with them.
Belonging to a CSA has encouraged me to try new types of produce I probably never would have picked up at the store on my own and I’ve found lots of new things I love. I also love knowing that I’m supporting local farmers and eating seasonally.
If neither of those are an option, shop your local health food store or grocery store and look for the deals! Produce that is in-season and locally grown is usually less expensive.
What’s In Season Now?
It seems people either love them or hate them. I happen to love them, so it’s easy for me to work them into my diet. Even if you think you hate them, trying a new way of preparing them might change your mind.
Many winter vegetables are great roasted. For more specifics on roasting, check out Aimee’s post on roasting all types of vegetables.
If you’re looking for a new way to prepare your brussels sprouts, try one of these recipes:
- Stir-fried Brussels Sprouts with Lemon & Parmesan
- Brussels Sprouts with Maple Buttered Pecans
- Apple and Pomegranate Brussels Sprouts Salad
I’ve never been big on cabbage but when it started showing up in my CSA box I decided to try the Sauteed Cabbage and Leeks with Sausage recipe featured on Simple Bites and it was delicious! Store cabbage in an airtight bag in the crisper drawer and it can remain fresh for up to two weeks.Photo by SweetOnVeg
This leafy green vegetable is one of the healthiest vegetables for you and there are many ways to use it. I love adding it to smoothies, and using it in soups, such as this Hearty Kale and Sausage Soup. The longer kale is stored, the more bitter and less sweet it will become. I love this Winter Pasta, and this Kale Salad with Maple-Poppyseed Dressing sounds delicious.
Some common varieties of winter squash include butternut squash, acorn squash and spaghetti squash. The great thing about squash is they will keep for several weeks to months if stored in a cold, dry place.
If you’re unfamiliar with how to prepare squash, start with this informative post on how to Select, Prepare, and Cook Winter Squash over at Simple Bites. If you’re looking for a good recipe to try, this Butternut Squash Soup with Bacon and Sage sounds amazing.
Pears are great to snack on just on their own. It’s always fun to dress them up too. These recipes all sound amazing:
- Maple Vanilla Roasted Pear Parfait
- Vanilla Roasted Pears
- Quinoa Salad with Pears, Baby Spinach, and Chick Peas in a Maple Vinaigrette
Citrus: Oranges, Grapefruit, Lemons, and Tangerines.
My CSA box is always overflowing with citrus at this time of the year. Most citrus is great for juicing or eating as is, but it’s also fun to try using it in new ways, like this Spinach Feta Blood Orange Salad.
I also love Aimee’s Citrus & Pomegranate Fruit Salad (pictured above). It’s beautiful and delicious, perfect for brunch. I made it for a baby shower last year and it was a hit.
Try using freshly squeezed citrus in a marinade. One of my favorites is this Orange-Ginger Marinade featuring freshly squeezed orange juice.
For More Inspiration:
Eat the Seasons– Lists what is currently in season with in depth information on on different types of produce and links to recipes.
Where Can You Find In-Season Real Food in the Winter?
Home Canning in the Winter Months @ Simple Bites-A great round-up full of inspiration for canning with winter produce.
101 Cookbooks Winter Recipes-An index of recipes featuring winter produce.
Eight Winter Vegetables You Should Be Eating Right Now @ Saving Naturally.
If you’re on Pinterest, I started a Seasonal Recipes for Winter board if you’re looking for more ideas.
How do you incorporate seasonal winter produce in your meals?