Chilly mornings, longer nights, hot beverages, and pumpkin spice – all are reminders that autumn is here! This fall season try adding seasonal fruits and vegetables to your meals or snacks. Seasonal fruits and vegetables are one way to celebrate fall; when eating in season you get fruit and vegetable that are richer in flavor and cost less.
Apples come in all shades of green, yellow and orange. They are a great way to add up fiber to your day; 1- medium apple contains about 4g of fiber (and most of it comes from the peel). Besides fiber, apples are good sources of Vitamin C, potassium and contain antioxidants – which aid against oxidative damage to our cells.
How to try it: Bake or microwave an apple w/ sprinkled cinnamon and walnuts for a tasty dessert or snack.
Beets are beautiful in color, have an earthy taste to them and are low in calories. They are in season in the summer and early fall. They are edible from their leafy greens all the way down to the roots (bulb). The leaves can be use in salads and have a similar consistency as spinach. Beet juice can also serve a natural food coloring for this Spooky season.
How to try it: Pre-heat oven to 350˚F; wash beets, cut them into fries or chucks. Pour avocado oil, season them with salt, black pepper, and dried thyme. Spread evenly in a baking sheet; bake for about 1 hour or until tender – check with a knife for tenderness. There is no need to peel beets – the skin slides off after roasting or steaming.
These tiny cruciferous vegetables taste bitter and have a distinct odor. These vegetables will keep you feeling satisfied while providing you with low calories; about 38 calories per 1 cup
How to try it: Simply roast Brussel sprouts at 400˚F for 40 minutes. Toss with olive oil, salt, garlic and black pepper before baking. Chili flakes can be added for spice.
Switch up lettuce with collard greens, these leafy greens are pack with vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K and are good sources of fiber and calcium. These nutrients help bones and immune system stay strong, helps with vision and can reduce some risk certain cancers due to its fiber content.
How to try it: Wash and chopped the collard greens – make sure to take off stem. Sauté the chopped collard greens with 1 tsp. avocado oil and sliced onion, then them with scramble eggs or into an omelet.
Did you know that October is national Cranberry month! You can try adding this fruit into baked goods, tossing dried cranberries into salads, making your own trail mix or even have it as a beverage. Cranberries contain a naturally occurring antimicrobial and antioxidant compound.
How to try it: Toss about 1 cup of dried cranberries into a salad with grilled chicken, shaved almonds, lettuce of your choice, and 1 Tablespoon vinaigrette dressing.
Kale is part of the leafy greens family; its texture is tough a, not as tender as lettuce. However, this vegetable is a good source of calcium and potassium; these two minerals are ideal for bone health and muscle contractions. It is also high in Vitamin A, C, and K.
How to try it: In a blender, blend 1 cup of kale with ½ ripped banana and 8oz of oat milk.
Parsnips look like big white carrots, with a stronger flavor. They are loaded with nutrients like vitamin C, folate, potassium and magnesium. This hardy vegetable is a perfect addition to stews, soups and curries.
How to try it: Make parsnip fries by bring oven to 350˚F; slice parsnip into wedges sprinkle them with 2 Tablespoons of avocado oil + 2-3 Tablespoons of rosemary or any of your favorite herb + 2 teaspoon garlic powder and salt for taste. Bake for about 30 minutes or until tender.
Pears are an excellent fruit for those who suffer from indigestion. Pears offer about 6g of fiber, which helps you feel full and help control appetite. Besides fiber, pears can help your immune system stay strong due to its high Vitamin C content. When selecting and storing pears, look out for firmness and store them in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.
How to try it: Sliced Comice pears into a mixed green salad w/ pecans, red onion, feta cheese, balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil.
Pumpkin/ Winter Squash
Pumpkin and other winter squash such as acorn and butternut squash are rich in color, its vibrant orange tones makes it rich in beta-carotene, which converts, to Vitamin A when consumed. Vitamin A can help keep your eyes and skin in great shape. When winter squashes – place them in a cool, dry place, they can be stored for up to 1 month.
How to try it: Sauté your favorite winter squash with savory herbs and spices like rosemary, thyme, sage, curry and parsley to balance the sweetness from this vegetable.
When selecting sweet potatoes, choose firm potatoes with a smooth skin—avoiding any cracks, soft spots and bruises. Like many of the other seasonal fruits – sweet potatoes are full of vitamin A. If you are looking to shape up your vision, immune system and have healthy skin, try adding more sweet potatoes into your meals.
How to try it: Peeled sweet potatoes and cut them into cubes, steam them for about 10 minutes (or until tender) with a pinch of salt and 2 garlic cloves or garlic powder. Once tender, set them in a bowl and mash them. Try it as a side dish.