Summer is hot, hot, hot for so many tasty fruits and vegetables. The months of July and August offer a rich bounty of produce with which to build inspiring meals -- everything from colorful salads to hearty soups. But when you can buy virtually anything at the supermarket year-round, what’s the point of shopping for fruits and vegetables in season? Here’s the important difference…
Seasonal produce is often fresher and produced on local farms. Thanks to more nourishment from the sun and soil, “peak season” fruits and veggies also contain more nutrients and antioxidants. In short: you can trust that seasonally fresh produce is picked when they’re ripe and fully developed.
And talk about optimal flavor! Produce that have been allowed to ripen properly tastes more amazing than off-season varieties. Imagine flavorful, juicy, and vibrant berries and tomatoes so good you can eat them straight from the vine!
Looking to build a sustainable, seasonal shopping list? Here are the ‘peak picks’ for July and August.
Many of these summer fruits can be eaten as-is or tossed on top of greens, oatmeal, or yogurt. As for the veggies, some chopped zucchini, yellow squash, and bell peppers can really jazz up your soft tacos, tomato soup, and lasagna. *This is not a complete list, but in general, here is what to buy at your local farmer’s market or grocery store:
This list is nearly identical to the July list, with a few additional gems -- like pluots!
Want to take one easy step in support of your health? Make shopping for seasonally fresh fruit and vegetables a lifestyle. Eating seasonally has many benefits, including upgraded nutritional value and flavor. Plus, with all that fresh food, you may be inspired to cook more meals at home -- and that’s always a good move for your health.
*For a complete list of the freshest produce in your state, visit The Seasonal Food Guide.
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