In this Guide to Winter Food, we’re showcasing five of the most popular seasonal ingredients for winter: winter squash, leafy greens, citrus fruits, sweet potatoes and beets. You’ll learn about the health benefits of In Season Produce AND we’ve rounded up 25 delicious Winter recipes that will inspire you to cook and stay warm in your kitchen during these chilly months!
Winter – which officially starts December 21st and ends on March 20th – doesn’t exactly scream seasonal produce the way Spring and Summer do, but there are still a surprising amount of fresh vegetables and fruits that peak in the Winter.
We’re lucky that some of Fall’s bountiful produce like sweet potatoes, winter squash and beets store well and keep for months. Citrus fruits like lemons, grapefruit and tangerines peak in the winter, and nutritious leafy greens like arugula, collard greens and spinach thankfully grow year round.
There’s nothing like getting fresh fruits and vegetables from your local farmer’s market or CSA to inspire clean, healthy eating. Read on to discover some recipes that are bound to become some of your favorites this winter!
SEASONAL WINTER FOOD + 25 COMFORTING WINTER RECIPES
SEASONAL WINTER FOOD: Winter Squash
Winter squash comes in all types of varieties including butternut, delicata, spaghetti, acorn and kabocha. Delicious roasted, in soups, sauces or used in place of pasta noodles, it’s hard to get tired of squash when there’s such a variety of ways to eat it!
These anti-inflammatory gourds are also super good for you, filled with fiber (helps eliminate toxins), beta-carotene (great for your skin) and folate (which is especially important if you’re planning to get pregnant).
WINTER RECIPES: WINTER SQUASH RECIPES
- The Creamiest Vegan Mac and Cheese (Gluten Free)
- Curried Butternut Squash Soup (Gluten- and Dairy-Free)
- Tempeh Sausage Stuffed Acorn Squash from Hummusapien
- Vanilla + Cinnamon Butternut Squash Rice Cakes
- Garlic Spaghetti Squash with Herbs from Pinch of Yum
SEASONAL WINTER FOOD: Leafy Greens
Leafy greens are tremendously healthy and totally delicious! Add to stir-fries or soups, sauté for a simple side dish, blend into smoothies or use as a base for salads.
Dark, leafy greens are a powerhouse food that support optimal heart health, brain cognition and microbiome gut health, to name a few!
WINTER RECIPES: LEAFY GREENS RECIPES
- Thai-Style Sauteed Greens with Coconut Milk
- Easy Homemade Spicy Tuna Poke Bowls
- Skinny Peppermint Mocha Green Smoothie (Vegan + GF)
- Healthy Turkish Breakfast Bowls with Herbed Yogurt
- Dairy-Free Creamed Spinach (Paleo) from Eat Drink Paleo
SEASONAL WINTER FOOD: Citrus Fruits
Citrus fruits show up every year when the days get shorter and we’re in desperate need of some bright flavors and colors. Grapefruits, lemons, oranges and tangerines are all wonderful ways to add vibrancy to our plates and palates.
Known for their high Vitamin C content, citrus fruits provide a much needed boost when winter colds kick in. They’re also hydrating and help your body absorb other nutrients, so it’s smart to pair them with superfoods like leafy greens for maximum health benefits.
WINTER RECIPES: CITRUS RECIPES
- Citrus Kale Salad with Maple Granola and Pancetta Vinaigrette
- Paleo Lemon Poppy Seed Bread from Joy Food Sunshine
- Green Detox Smoothie with Citrus + Herbs
- Citrus & Spicy Shrimp Salad with Grapefruit Vinaigrette from Lexi’s Clean Kitchen
- Lemon Lime Macaroons from Feasting on Fruit
SEASONAL WINTER FOOD: Sweet Potatoes
Inexpensive, long lasting and downright delicious, sweet potatoes have come a long way from just getting paired with marshmallows at Thanksgiving and are now showcased in a variety of recipes, from soups to tacos, casseroles to even desserts!
Filled with magnesium and potassium, these spuds are also a great way to satisfy a sweets craving with their naturally sweet taste. Their sugars are slowly released into the bloodstream, providing a balanced source of energy – no blood sugar spikes or fatigue here!
WINTER RECIPES: SWEET POTATO RECIPES
- Twice Baked Stuffed Sweet Potato Skins with Chipotle Beans
- 30-Minute Leftover Sweet Potato & Turkey Enchilada Skillet from Ambitious Kitchen
- Garlicky Sweet Potato Noodle Casserole (8 Ingredients) from Minimalist Baker
- Crispy Baked Sweet Potato Fries w/ Roasted Garlic Tahini Yogurt Dip from The First Mess
- Easy Grilled Sweet Potato Pizzas from Fit Foodie Finds
SEASONAL WINTER FOOD: Beets
Beets have become much more popular over recent years with their deep, earthy flavor and wide variety of applications since they can be eaten fresh, cooked or roasted. Cooked beets are pretty sweet and juicy, meaning that beets have even been showing up in dessert recipes like chocolate cake or red velvet cupcakes!
Beets have been linked with lowering blood pressure, increasing stamina and fighting inflammation, making them a healthy and detoxifying addition to your diet.
WINTER RECIPES: BEET RECIPES
- Red Velvet Green Smoothie with Beets
- Easy Superfood Beet Hummus
- Vanilla Roasted Root Vegetable + Yogurt Parfaits
- Oven Baked Beet Chips from A Spicy Perspective
- Strawberry + Pickled Beet Salad with White Balsamic Dressing
What are some of your favorite ways to prepare these winter foods? Let us know in the comments below!