It's that time of year for juicy watermelon, sweet cherry tomatoes, and refreshing cucumbers! If you're curious about what's in season in summer, check out this list of seasonal fruits and vegetables. This guide will help you learn what's fresh this season for your next farmer's market or grocery store trip.
Benefits of Eating Seasonally
Although you can easily find and eat most fruits and vegetables year-round, eating seasonally has plenty of benefits.
- Best flavor. There's no denying that freshly picked fruits and veggies always taste so flavorful! Food tastes much better when you eat with the seasons because it's picked at its peak ripeness. This allows the produce to ripen on the plant fully and develop its complete flavor profile. When produce is grown closer to where it's sold, it has a much shorter travel distance and will be fresher when you buy it.
- More affordable. Though this is not always the case, most of the time, fruits and vegetables that are in season are priced lower than when they're not in peak growing season. They are often more readily available and don't have to be imported from other regions or countries.
- Support local businesses. This is my favorite reason to eat seasonally! You can support local farmers and producers because the stores and markets don't have to import the produce. This helps create a sustainable and resilient local food system, which benefits the economy and the environment.
Tips When Selecting Summer Produce
Buy local. When selecting summer produce, choose items that are in season in your area. This ensures that you're getting the freshest and most flavorful produce.
My favorite place to shop for fruits and veggies is at the local farmer's market. You can even chat with the farmers to learn more about each one, how they're grown, and what you can do with them.
Many grocery stores typically have a section in the produce department where you can find local produce, so look here first to know what to buy and support your local community.
Look for freshness. Choose produce that is firm, brightly colored, and free of bruises or soft spots. Whatever you're choosing should smell fresh and have a vibrant color.
Summer Produce Guide
These are the most popular summer fruits and vegetables. These can typically be found throughout the United States from late June through late August. Use these in your favorite summer recipes!
- Green Beans
- Summer Squash
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)
The best place to find seasonal produce in the summer is at your local farmer's market or CSA farm share. Many grocery stores will also have a section in the produce department for local produce.
The best way to store summer fruits and vegetables depends on the type of fruit or vegetable. Some store best at room temperature, like tomatoes, while others are better refrigerated. For a complete list of how to store your produce, read more about the best way to store fruits and vegetables.
Popular Summer Recipes
- Zucchini and Squash Bake
- Cucumber Carrot Salad
- Fiesta Corn Salad with Avocado
- Mango Salsa with Jalapeno
- Roasted Tomatoes on the Vine
- Crispy Baked Eggplant with Cherry Tomatoes
- Strawberry Peach Galette
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