Savor the local flavors of the season



The summer season is a plentiful time for produce that can be grown in Minnesota. In addition, several other fruits and veggies are in season throughout the country and are ripe for the picking at most grocery stores.

Summer is a great time to go for a goal like eating a rainbow of fresh fruits and veggies. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Enjoy bountiful berries

All sorts of berries are in season for summer—each with a bevy of health benefits:

  • Blueberries are one of the most antioxidant-rich fruits. Antioxidants help to fend off free radicals and protect your body against aging, disease and infection.
  • Blackberries contain a good amount of minerals, including copper, which is instrumental in the production of red and white blood cells. Red blood cells help to carry oxygen from your lungs, and white blood cells help ward off infection.
  • Raspberries are an excellent source of vitamin C, which is also a powerful antioxidant.
  • Strawberries are packed with complex B vitamins, which help the body metabolize carbohydrates, proteins and fats.

Chop up countless crudités

Whip up an easy and traditional French appetizer—crudités—with an array of raw or blanched veggies. Summer staples your veggie tray might include:

  • Bell peppers have small levels of capsaicin, which has anti-bacterial, anti-carcinogenic and anti-diabetic properties.
  • Cucumbers contain potassium, a heart-friendly electrolyte that can help lower blood pressure.
  • Green beans are a rich source of dietary fiber, which aids in colon health.
  • Tiny tomatoes—cherry or grape—have antioxidants that help with eye, skin and bone health.

Go for the green

In addition to your typical salad greens, load up on nutrient-packed greens like broccoli, collard greens, kale and Swiss chard. All of these green goodies are storehouses for nutrients that help to protect against cancer and vitamins that promote bone health. Find and try a new recipe with these ingredient-specific slideshows: