Although we have the ability to eat different types of fruits and vegetables year-round, we love eating with the seasons. The summer months are filled with tomatoes, cucumbers, leafy greens, and berries to keep your body cool. But as the temperature begins to drop as we slowly move from summer to autumn, we need to start warming our bodies from the inside out to prepare for the coming winter months. If you aren’t quite sure what vegetables and fruits to start adding to your fall diet, we rounded up five of our favorite, fall fruits and vegetables that Happy Dirt farmers are currently harvesting.
There are two main varieties of persimmons: hachiya and fuya. The hachiya persimmon is more astringent, meaning the high levels of tannins in the fruit leave a bitter taste in your mouth. To avoid the bitter taste, wait until the hachiya persimmon feels like a water balloon in the palm of your hand. The flesh should be jello-like. The fuya persimmon is shaped like a tomato and can be eaten when the berry is still slightly firm. You still want the fuya persimmon to have a slight give, but it won’t leave a bitter taste in your mouth. You can use both types of persimmons to make jams, pies, bread, tea, or salsa!
Pictured is a Fuyu persimmon, which is shaped like a tomato. Hachiya persimmons are shaped like a heart.
Did you know that 2,500 apple varieties are grown in the United States? We love when the apples start rolling into the Happy Dirt warehouse. You have the classic apple varieties like Fuji, Granny Smith, Honey Crisp, and Gala. Then you have heirloom apples like Arkansas Black and Stayman Winesaps, which are great apples for apple pies, apple sauce, and apple butter. Apples are ready to harvest in the fall and are high in carbohydrates, simple sugar, and fiber, which are all essential ingredients for warmth during the winter months.
Gala apples are mild and sweet in flavor with a juicy crunch. They are the highest produced apple in the United States.
Root vegetables are fall superheroes that carry over to the winter months and sweet potatoes are one of the best. Besides being delicious, sweet potatoes are a great source of vitamin B and vitamin C, minerals like calcium and iron, fiber, and antioxidants. Sweet potatoes provide the starch your body needs, while helping you fight winter infections. We love to bake a sweet potato and drizzle the flesh with olive oil.
Another happy root vegetable to not overlook is the rutabaga. The rutabaga is a cross between a turnip and a wild cabbage. People often confuse rutabagas and turnips and think they are one and the same. In fact, they are quite different. The rutabaga grows in cooler climates and is larger than a turnip. Rutabagas are also sweeter than turnips. Rutabagas are great when you want to balance your carbohydrate intake during the fall and winter months, yet still want to make sure you’re getting adequate amounts of fiber and vitamin C!
Rutabagas have a yellow-brown skin and orange-yellow flesh.
Brussels sprouts are a hit or miss with most people, but they are a great source of fiber, folic acid, manganese, and vitamins A, C, and K. Brussels sprouts are available year-round, but peak season for the green, cabbage-like vegetables is from September to mid-February! If you need some yummy recipes to entice you to give Brussels sprouts a try, check out this roasted Brussels sprouts and garlic recipe and this sauteed Brussels sprouts recipe.
Did you know Brussels sprouts are a form of cabbage?
Other fruits and vegetables you can enjoy throughout the fall include dark leafy greens, cranberries, butternut squash, and grapes!