Winter Vegetables are often portrayed as boring and something to endure rather than enjoy. Every meal doesn’t have to revolve around potatoes and other root vegetables. It is possible to eat fresh fruits and vegetables with plenty of nutrients and flavor all winter long.
Read on to learn about some of the unexpected vitamin-rich cold-weather foods you should stock up on right now.
This SUPREMELY healthy, INEXPENSIVE vegetable is a close cousin to other cold-weather favorites like cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, kale, and broccoli . Cabbage is loaded with vitamins and minerals (Vitamins C and K and folate, in particular), fiber, antioxidants, and anti-carcinogenic compounds called glucosinolates. Some studies claim that the CABBAGE can even reduce cholesterol and lower risk of cancer and diabetes .
- Peak Season: Most varieties (RED CABBAGE, GREEN CABBAGE, SAVOY CABBAGE & TUSCAN CABBAGE) love cool weather and are ready for harvest through the winter.
- Storage Tips: Tightly wrap individual heads of cabbage in plastic and stash in the refrigerator to keep ‘em fresh for up to a week.
- How to Eat It: Cabbage’s nutritional benefits are most pronounced when raw, so slice up a few leaves to add crunch to salads or stir fries.
2. Brussels Sprouts
The often despised and largely disliked little cabbage looking vegetable is full of Goodness and is seeing a resurgence in popularity in restaurants and home kitchens alike. The Brussels sprout, aka cabbage’s mini-me, boasts some of the same health benefits as the its full sized Cabbage cousin. Like other cruciferous veggies, Brussels sprouts have high levels of cancer-fighting antioxidants that can protect DNA from oxidative damage .
- Storage Tips: Brussels sprouts will keep in the fridge for a few weeks. The outer leaves will shrivel, so remove them just before cooking your sprouts.
- How to Eat It: Toss halved sprouts with olive oil and roast until crispy and brown. Top with a light coating of brown butter and sage for a decadent (but still healthy) side dish.
3. Winter Squash
O.K so most of us call them pumpkin. but the Winter Squash or Acorn, butternut, kabocha, and delicata squash are in season during the winter. The golden squash is full with healthy goodness like carotenoids, Vitamin A, and potassium .
- Storage Tips: Even though they seem pretty solid, squash continue to ripen once they’re picked. Slow down the process by storing them in a cool, slightly humid environment (like, say, a basement or cellar). Under the right conditions, squash will keep for up to three months.
- How to Eat It: Since squash is healthy, fairly inexpensive, filling, and darn tasty, it’s no wonder there are thousands of awesome recipes for them.
One of my personal, all round, favorites and a staple food in many countries. With features like being inexpensive , being filling and full of nutritional benefits including potassium, magnesium, folic acid, vitamin C, and even protein . Fancy purple taters may even help lower blood pressure and boost antioxidants. While sweet potatoes are considered a healthier choice (since they’re loaded with beta-carotene, vitamins A and C, and fiber), regular old white spuds are still nutritious as long as you don’t fry ‘em or mash them with tons of butter and cream.
- Peak Season: Various varieties of potatoes are available year-round.
- Storage Tips: Store potatoes in a dark, cool, well-ventilated area for about one month. Keep spuds away from onions and apples. At room temperature, potatoes will keep for one to two weeks.
- How to Eat It: Try a healthier take on the classic baked potato bar. Twice-baked spuds stuffed with kale, broccoli, and cheddar make for a tasty and comforting meal.
This smelly and socially unpopular vegetable that has been shunned in modern polite society is actually an essential ingredient in almost all cuisine and savory dishes. With considerable Cholesterol benefits it is ideal for flavoring anything from soup, to grain salads, to pasta, to meat, onions are a year-round kitchen all-star. They might make you cry, but onions are actually pretty healthy . The unassuming veggies are low in calories but surprisingly high in vitamin C and fiber. The oils found in onions can lower LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels and raise HDL (“good”) cholesterol
- Peak Season: Various types of onions are available all year round.
- Storage Tips: Stash onions outside the fridge (they can go soft if refrigerated) in a cool, dry place for several months.
- How to Eat It: Sautéed white onion jazzes up this fig, ricotta, and arugula flatbread pizza.
- Peak Season: Beets are available early spring through late fall.
- Storage Tips: Store beetroots in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to a month.
- How to Eat It: Toss roasted beets and carrots with lentils and plenty of fresh herbs and spices to make a hearty, healthy vegetarian main dish.
Many of us have absolutely no idea what this aesthetically challenged vegetable is used for. It looks like a misshapen, greenish-white blob covered in little roots. Appetizing, right? But beyond the odd exterior, celeriac boasts a tasty, subtle flavor — somewhere between parsley and celery — and a hearty texture. It’s low in calories, high in fiber, and rich in vitamin C (a powerful antioxidant) and phosphorus (which contributes to strong bones and teeth).
- Storage Tips: Like other root veggies, celeriac will stay fresh in the fridge for up to a month.
- How to Eat It: Sub in celeriac for almost any root vegetable.Cube and sautée it for a tasty, healthy substitute for hash browns.
- Storage Tips: Like many root vegetables, carrots will keep in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for several weeks.
- How to Eat It: Bring out carrots’ natural sweetness with a side dish that combines the orange veggies, cinnamon, orange juice, and maple syrup.
9. Turnips and Rutabagas
- Peak Season: Available all winter long.
- Storage Tips: Keep turnips and rutabagas in the fridge for a few weeks or in a root cellar for several months.
- How to Eat It: What’s cheesy, gooey, and surprisingly good for you? A lightened-up simple turnip gratin! Rutabagas can be subbed in for any dish that calls for turnips.
Parsnips look rather like a pale Carrot. The long, pale, tapered root veggies are loaded with fiber, potassium, vitamin C, and folate. Like carrots, they have a slightly sweet, earthy flavour that goes well with nearly any winter soup, stew, or casserole.
- Storage Tips: Store parsnips in a bag in the refrigerator forthree to four weeks.
- How to Eat It: Combine roasted parsnips with Granny Smith apples (and a few other essential ingredients) for a smooth, fall-flavored soup.
11. Sweet Potatoes
Sweet Potatoes have the versatility of other root vegetables and can be enjoyed in many of the same ways.These orange-coloured vegetables are loaded with fiber, beta-carotene, vitamins A and C, and antioxidants . Plus, since they’re fairly low on the glycemic index, they’re great for filling up without getting weighed down .
- Peak Season: Sweet potatoes are available year-round.
- Storage Tips: Keep sweet potatoes in a cool, dry place outside the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
- How to Eat It: Like a any root vegetable, it can be backed, roasted, mashed or souped…
- Peak Season: radicchio is available throughout the winter.
- Storage Tips: Keep it in the refrigerator wrapped in plastic for up to three weeks.
- How to Eat It: Sautéed radicchio adds a kick (and a nice serving of vitamins and minerals) to this easy pasta dish.