One of the reasons I love summer is because all of the fresh produce that is available. I get so excited when I see the prices going down at the grocery store, and when I notice the fruits and veggies tasting better and better. There’s nothing quite like biting into a juicy, sweet strawberry or enjoying a fresh salad topped with bunch of ripe tomatoes and avocado. Over the years, my love for fruits and vegetables has grown, and I have had a lot of fun trying different types of produce and finding new ways to use them in my recipes. I used to buy everything canned or frozen, but I have finally learned that buying fresh is the way to go. It’s not only better on my wallet, but my tastebuds thank me too!
This weekend I went to the Dallas Farmers Market (you can read about my last trip here), and I was like a kid in a candy store. There were booths after booths loaded up with vibrant fruits and veggies. Summer produce is so pretty, y’all! I ended up buying a ton of produce, and I can’t wait to use it in my meals this week.
A photo posted by Blogger @ Happily the Hicks (@happilythehicks) on
After my experience at the farmer’s market this weekend, I thought it would be the perfect time to write a post about my favorite summer produce and share some recipes you can make with them. Some of them are mine, and others are from other bloggers out there! Just click on the picture to find the recipe.
Let me know if you have a recipe that would be perfect for any of these fruits and veggies, and I can add it to the list!
Summer Produce You Need to Try
If I could pick a favorite fruit, it would be peaches (especially the ones from the farmer’s market this weekend… so juicy and sweet!). I have always loved them, and they scream summer to me!
Benefits: boosts the immune system, helps digestion, helps prevent stress, good source of fiber, vitamin C and vitamin A
I’m convinced that Isaac could live off of blueberries. He loves snacking on these, and I try to make lots of recipes with them, because I know he likes them so much. They are so juicy and bursting with flavor this summer.
Benefits: good source of iron, phosphorus, calcium and vitamin K, helps lower blood pressure, aids in digestion and weight loss
Strawberries are one of my go to fruits year round, but they are so much better when they’re in season during the summer. I love how big and sweet they get, and I eat those suckers every day!
Benefits: excellent source of vitamin C, antioxidants and manganese, can reduce the risk of a heart attack and stroke, help in digestion and regulate blood pressure
For years I claimed I hated pineapple, but I think that’s just because I never gave it a chance. About two years ago I finally tried some, and I was shocked at how delicious it was. The pineapple was super sweet, juicy and I’ve been hooked ever since.
Benefits: support a healthy immune system, aid in digestion, contain anti-inflammatory properties, excellent source of manganese, vitamin C and antioxidants
Did you know there are dozens of types of squash? The summer squash varieties are my favorites, because they remind me of the ones I used to eat out of my grandparents’ garden. One of Isaac’s favorite vegetables is the yellow squash, so I try to cook with it often. I’m excited they are in season and oh so delicious this time of year!
Benefits: a rich source of vitamin A, vitamin C, magnesium, fiber and potassium, full of antioxidants, helps regulate blood sugar and has anti cancer benefits
I crave okra during the summer! I have always loved this green, flavorful vegetable, and I still remember getting excited when I would find out my mom was making okra and tomatoes for dinner.
Benefits: low in calories and high in fiber, helps manage blood sugar, aids in reducing stress, has anti fatigue benefits and may help lower cholesterol
I know kale has been talked about for years now, and you’re probably tired of hearing about it. But y’all… I can’t tell you how much I love it. All you need to do is cut the leaves off the stem and massage them (to break down the fibers and soften it up) and then it’s ready to use in your recipe!
Benefits: support healthy skin, hair and nails, aids in digestion, reduces the risk of heart disease, lowers the risk of cancer and high blood pressure, excellent source of vitamin A, vitamin K and vitamin C, and so much more!
I used to hate spinach, but in college I decided to give it another chance… And that’s when I realized I had been missing out on so much! I love using spinach in salads, adding it to smoothies, cooking it with eggs and putting it on sandwiches. It goes so well in so many recipes, and yes- please buy fresh!
Benefits: excellent source of vitamin K, vitamin A, manganese, folate, magnesium and iron, anti-inflammatory and anti-cancerous benefits, full of antioxidants and promotes healthy bones
These creamy, green veggies are packed with vitamins, minerals and are a great source of healthy fats. Avocados are one of my favorite vegetables to add to salads, sandwiches, tacos and even smoothies!
Benefits: good source of vitamin K, folate, potassium and vitamin C, loaded with fiber, can lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels, may help you lose weight
What are your favorite summer fruits and veggies?