Eating with the Season: Fall Edition

The vibrant hues of summer have given way to the golden and crimson tones of autumn, which means that a new season has arrived with a cornucopia of flavors just waiting to be savored. Fall, with its crisp air and rustling leaves, is a time of transition and transformation—not just in nature but also in our kitchens. It’s a season that beckons us to embrace the art of seasonal eating, a practice that not only nourishes our bodies but also connects us to the rhythms of the Earth. With that in mind, we invite you to join us in exploring the delights of harvest-time produce and embrace the benefits it can offer for your body. 

The Benefits of Seasonal Eating

Ever pondered whether or not it’s worth it to indulge in seasonal produce? Wonder no more—the answer is a resounding yes! Let’s delve into just a few of the many advantages of relishing fruits and vegetables at the peak of their season. 

Fresh and Full of Flavor

Indulging in the crunch of an October apple or the juiciness of an August peach is a delight like no other. When fruits and vegetables are in season, they reach the pinnacle of their flavor—ripe, succulent, and bursting with taste. Unlike their out-of-season counterparts, which often endure lengthy journeys to reach grocery store shelves, seasonal foods are typically plucked at their peak. This means that these fruits and veggies are bursting with flavor, and there’s no need to fret about them being overly tart or starting to ferment. 

Budget-Friendly

In-season produce tends to be budget-friendly because it doesn’t rack up hefty production costs. Out-of-season goods often require GMOs and greenhouse cultivation, making them pricier to grow. Additionally, hidden expenses such as import tariffs and transportation fees can inflate the price tag you see at the supermarket. 

Naturally Nutrient-Rich

When fruits and vegetables are harvested at their prime, they pack a more powerful nutritional punch. In-season produce matures and develops a rich and concentrated nutritional profile over time. Opting for in-season selections ensures you reap the full benefits of vital vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber found in ripe fruits and vegetables.  

Minimal Processing

Produce has a limited shelf life, posing challenges for out-of-season imports. How do they keep these items from spoiling during transit? The answer often lies in post-harvest treatments, which may include the use of chemicals to prevent spoilage or expedite ripening. By choosing in-season produce, you opt for items that have undergone minimal, if any, post-harvest processing. 

Environmentally Conscious

With fewer chemicals and less transportation involved, in-season produce stands as an eco-friendly choice. It’s the preferred option for those aiming to reduce their carbon footprint and lead a more sustainable lifestyle. As an added bonus, shopping for in-season produce also gives you the opportunity to support farmers who are local to your area, which is a win-win for everyone involved. 

Culinary Creativity

Falling into the routine of preparing the same handful of meals time and time again is a common pitfall, especially when you stick to only a few of your favorite produce items. However, embracing seasonal eating injects novelty into your culinary adventure. It encourages you to experiment with new ingredients and recipes throughout the year. Who knows? You might discover a few new favorites along the way. 

Autumn Produce To Try

Ready to dig into some seasonal produce this autumn? Great! Here are some of our favorite fruits and vegetables that are in season during the cool fall months. 

Fruits

  • Lime. Although typically associated with the warm summer months, this vitamin C-packed fruit has a long growing season that often lasts into October, making it a perfect option to add to your meal plan during the first few weeks of fall. 
  • Passion Fruit. Another citrus fruit that is perfect for autumn is passion fruit, which is packed with vitamins A and C as well as a wide array of antioxidants.
  • Apples. Fall is the best time for biting into a crisp, fiber-filled, and nutrient-rich apple. And, of course, perfectly ripe apples are also fantastic for making fall staples like applesauce and apple pie! 
  • Raspberries. Another fruit that is commonly associated with summer but has a growing season that extends into fall is raspberries. These antioxidant-packed berries are great options for any time of day. 
  • Pumpkins. Of course, no fall produce list would be complete without pumpkins! A staple of autumn festivities, pumpkins are loaded with nutrients and provide the perfect flavor boost to many of your favorite cool-weather treats.
  • Figs. These are rich in fiber and other nutrients which make them a perfect snack or part of pastry dishes, and they are often at their best during the early weeks of fall.

Vegetables

  • Sweet Potatoes. Another staple at the dinner table during fall festivities, sweet potatoes are not only delicious but are also loaded with vital nutrients like vitamin A, vitamin C, and manganese. And they are at their prime during the fall season. 
  • Broccoli. Rich in fiber as well as vitamins C, A, and K, broccoli is a cool-weather veggie that hits its peak during the late fall months.  
  • Cabbage. Whether you use it in salads, coleslaw, or soup, cabbage is another nutrient-packed veggie that thrives in the colder weather, making it a perfect addition to your plate this autumn. 
  • Beetroot. Packed with iron, potassium, fiber, and a variety of vitamins, beetroot is an often overlooked superstar of fall vegetables. 

Enjoy the Bounty of Fall 

The arrival of the autumn months brings more than just a break from the hot weather, it also brings an abundance of delicious harvest-time produce for you to choose from. Fill your plate, satisfy your taste buds, and enjoy the bounty that Mother Nature provides during the fall by embracing all the delightful flavors and nutrients that in-season produce has to offer. It’s all part of what we call living the #NewEarthLife.