Did you know that at any time throughout the year when fruits and vegetables are out of season, frozen ones are an excellent option? In fact, the ADA reports that a variety of frozen fruits and vegetables are picked at their peak; making them nutritionally comparable to fresh. Attempting to buy fruits that are currently out of season leaves you with gritty tasteless blueberries, peaches that resemble biting into play dough and oversized strawberries that have been shipped 5462 miles and have lost every ounce of nutrients they may have once had.
However, the fall and winter provide an abundance of delectable fruits and vegetables that are in season and serve up a wealth of vitamins and nutrients! Citrus fruits, apples, avocados, cranberries, grapes, pears, and pomegranates are all nutritious fruits of fall. As for vegetables; beets, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, eggplant, green beans, lettuce, onions, potatoes, spinach, squash, and zucchini – the possibilities are endless!!
Spinach makes a great salad and provides copious amounts of nutrients (especially when compared to it’s tasteless counterpart – iceberg). Spinach is very low in calories and loaded with iron, fiber, and antioxidants (vitamin A and C). Pair it with numerous options for a nutritious side dish or meal.
A few of my fall spinach favorites are:
- Spinach-cranberry-walnut salad
- Spinach –strawberry (or pomegranate) – feta salad
- Spinach-cherry tomato-red onion-avocado salad
- Spinach-beet-white bean-feta salad
- Spinach-onion-feta omelets
**For salad dressing, I use an olive oil, balsamic vinegar and spice mixture**
Avocados are one of my absolute favorites! Use them to make guacamole – all you need is some tomato, onion, lime and seasoning! They are also delicious in a tomato-avocado-feta salad or mixed with black beans and served as an appetizer!
- 1 can of rinsed black beans
- 1 diced tomato (or canned)
- 1 – 1.5 diced avocado
- 1 cup frozen corn (thawed)
- Juice of 1 lime
- Kosher salt & pepper
- Combine all ingredients and serve with chips or crackers.
Here are a few additional easy fall vegetable recipes. – enjoy!!
Roasted Broccoli & Cauliflower
- 1 cup chopped of each
- Toss with olive oil, kosher salt, pepper & fresh rosemary
- Put on cookie sheet at 425 degrees for 10 minutes
Butternut Squash Fries
- Heat oven to 425
- Peel and seed 1 squash
- Cut into sticks like French fries
- Lightly coat in olive oil
- Season with salt, pepper, nutmeg
- Bake for 30 minutes, turning half way through
Sautéed Carrots with Sage
- Coat pan with layer of olive oil
- Add 1 ½ cups of carrots – sliced diagonally & 2 tbsp of water
- Cook w/ top on about 8 mins until carrots are almost tender
- Remove top. Add kosher salt & pepper – increase heat – cook 4 mins until lightly brown
- 2 tsp fresh small sage leaves