5 Spring Foods And How To Enjoy Them

by Victoria Le Maire, RD, LD

Last Updated: April 6, 2021

After a long winter with temperamental weather across the nation, we can rejoice that spring has sprung! Not only are days getting longer, but the weather is getting warmer, which means a whole new slew of seasonal produce is available. You may have had access to some of these year-round due to importing. However, eating foods in season allows for much more vibrant flavors in your dishes. We’ve gathered a few spring options to add some mood-boosting tastes to your next meal!
  1. Artichokes
    Artichokes time to shine is in the spring when the thistles are largest. Fans can rejoice as they do have a second crop in the fall. When choosing an artichoke, look for one with tight, compact leaves and fresh-cut stem ends. There are fuzzy, immature florets found at the center of an artichoke, which is inedible in large and mature artichokes. Artichokes may look intimidating but are delicious vegetables that have a nutty flavor to them. Artichokes are a good source of fiber varying from 5-8 grams per serving depending on if you buy a medium or large one.

    Enjoy artichokes fresh, steamed, baked, or stuffed. Check out this recipe for a tasty new way to enjoy this produce.
  2. Apricots
    This satisfying fruit is versatile and a great addition to both savory and sweet recipes! When selecting a fresh apricot, look for ones that are uniform in color, plump, and firm. They’re available in fresh, canned, and dried varieties for convenient and nutrient-dense options. Nutrition hack: if your apricots aren’t ripe yet, place them in a paper bag on a countertop to speed up the process!

    Some of our favorite ways to enjoy apricots include adding them to salads or even turning them into preserves. Try your hand at creating an apricot preserve to spread on your favorite breakfast bread with 1 tablespoon of peanut butter for a real treat.
  3. Collard Greens
    This popular green is most often found in traditional southern dishes. Collard greens offer a distinguished taste when raw, but once added to heat, their flavor softens and becomes milder the longer they’re cooked. These greens contain many antioxidants and are an excellent source of vitamin A, which helps maintain good vision. When selecting fresh collard greens, ensure the bunch is a deep green color, free of yellowing. Before use, wash and trim off the stems and any woody pieces to yield a delectable final product.

    Collard greens are a yummy addition to a stir-fry, an omelet or scrambled eggs, and an alternative to lettuce. Try using collard greens as your next vehicle to deliver your favorite sandwich or taco toppings.
  4. Turnips
    Turn up for turnips! This root vegetable is a sustainable option to keep in the house as you can use all parts of it from the base to the greens. Half a cup of turnips provides 25% of your daily Vitamin C and some fiber to keep your digestive tract healthy. When selecting turnips, look for small ones heavy in size; they will be sweeter than large ones. They should be smooth and firm, without scars or cracks. Make sure to scrub your turnips before cooking to remove any remaining soil.

    Turnips are typically used in soups and stews, but they’re just as adaptable as a potato. We recommend trying a sweet potato and turnip mash to add a pleasant kick to a unique spin on regular mashed potatoes. Serve this vitamin-rich roasted turnip fry as your next appetizer or side dish for a simple and delicious addition to any meal.
  5. Kiwifruit
    This fuzzy fruit is sweet and 100% edible! You read that right. You can even eat the skin. Many choose to forgo eating the skin, but that’s where many nutrients are hidden. A kiwi’s skin contains a high concentration of fiber, folate, and vitamin E. Choose one that is firm but gives to pressure and avoids hard kiwis, as they will be sour. Storing a kiwi away from sun or heat is important to keep it edible. To accelerate the ripening process, place a kiwi in a paper bag with an apple, banana, or pear.

    Try eating the kiwi like an apple if you’re up to trying the skin (the fuzz can be rubbed off before eating if desired). Kiwis can be a pleasant burst of flavor in a tropical salsa that can be placed atop a salmon fillet. If you’re looking to get the whole kiwi’s nutritional benefits but don’t want to eat it raw, try blending it up into your next smoothie.

Whether it’s fresh, frozen, canned, or dried, eating produce has many benefits. Shopping for fresh produce in season can help boost flavor and help with budgeting around groceries. Enjoy these seasonal options, and we hope this has inspired some creativity in a kitchen near you!

Disclaimer: This information is educational only and not providing healthcare recommendations. Please see a healthcare provider.

Victoria Le Maire, RD, LD

Victoria Le Maire, RD, LD

Victoria is a dedicated dietitian with a love for helping others develop a positive relationship with food, while setting realistic goals. Victoria has professional experience with various conditions such as strokes, diabetes and weight management. She strives to make a nutritious lifestyle attainable for all. You can catch Victoria scratch-cooking at home, trying new workouts at her local gym or spending time with her dog, Jack.