Ahh, fall. Crisp air, soft sweaters, leaves falling like golden confetti. When it comes to our autumn menu, we like our food to be just as cozy and fall-inspired as we feel. We also make it a point to choose in-season produce.
But why eat in-season?
Eating in-season fruits and vegetables benefits both you and the environment.
Studies have found that seasonal fruits and veggies have higher nutritional content.
Why? According to this article, “In order for certain fruits and vegetables to be available year-round, post-harvest treatments, known as ripening agents, are used. These include chemicals, gases, and heat processes.”
This protects the produce from bacteria while also slowing the ripening process so that the produce remains edible during transportation from farms across the country (and world!) to your table.
But produce farmed with ripening agents contain less nutrients.
Additionally, eating in-season produce is better for the environment.
Choosing in-season veggies and fruits increases the likelihood that a local farmer will have it available at your Farmer’s Market. Buying from your local farms keeps financial resources in your community and reduces the amount of fuel it takes to transport produce thousands of miles across the country.
The bottom line: Eating in-season is eating sustainably.
But with these 7 flavor-packed fall recipes below, eating in-season won’t be a problem at all.
Local to Tennessee?
Popular Fall Fruits & Veggies:
7 Fall Recipes Using In-Season Ingredients:
Creamy Carrot Soup with Kale and Roasted Chickpeas
It’s soup season, and we are all the way here for it. This recipe uses carrots and kale, two popular cool season veggies, to create a creamy concoction sure to hit the soup spot.
- 2 cups Carrots diced
- ½ cup Yellow onion diced
- 1 tbls Fresh thyme or 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 1/2 Tbls Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 32 oz Vegetable broth
- 1 can Chickpeas
- 2 cups Kale, cut into strips and loosely packed
- Salt and pepper to taste
Parmesan Roasted Carrots
Dipped in hummus, chopped up in soups, added to your Sunday roast… what can’t carrots do? But sometimes, we just need to let the carrots shine on their own, like in this simple side dish.
- 1 pound fresh carrots, peeled
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
Autumn Kale Salad with Fennel, Honeycrisp, and Goat Cheese
Just because it’s soup season doesn’t mean we can’t appreciate a good autumn salad, too. Kale, apples, cranberries, and pumpkins seeds are the essence of fall produce.
- 1 very large bunch of kale
- 1 medium Honeycrisp apple
- 1 medium bulb of fennel
- 3 ounces chilled goat cheese, crumbled (to yield about ⅓ cup crumbled goat cheese)
- ⅓ cup dried cranberries
- ¼ cup pepitas (pumpkin seeds) or chopped pecans
Ultimate Chicken Noodle Soup
There’s nothing cozier than your classic chicken noodle soup. Even better, carrots and celery are in-season veggies.
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 2 carrots, sliced
- 2 celery stalks, sliced
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 5 garlic cloves, chopped
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 c. dry white wine
- 8 c. chicken stock
- 2 1/2 lb. bone-in, skinless chicken breast and thighs
- 2 1/2 c. uncooked wide egg noodles
- 3 tbsp. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 2 tbsp. chopped fresh dill
- 2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
Balsamic Roasted Beets
Any beet lovers around here? This simple side dish is a special shout out to you.
- 3 beets peeled & diced (about 3 cups)
- 1 TBSP olive oil
- ½ tsp sea salt
- 1 TBSP balsamic vinegar
- 1 TBSP honey (pure maple syrup for a vegan version)
Pear Custard Pie
The fall-fresh pears in this recipe will make for a mouthwatering dessert to present to your guests… or hey, maybe this custard pie is a treat meant just for you. We get it, and we’re not judging.
- 4 firm pears of any variety cored, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup of unsalted butter melted
- 3 eggs
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- Powdered sugar for garnish
- Cooking spray
Rotisserie Chicken and Potato Chowder
Leeks, fennel, and potatoes are all in-season produce that make this hearty chowder a great go-to for those chilly nights.
- 4 slices bacon, chopped
- 1 tbsp. unsalted butter
- 1 leek (white and light green parts), halved and sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, pressed
- 1 tsp. fennel seeds, crushed
- 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
- 2 c. whole milk
- 4 c. chicken stock
- 3/4 lb. red potatoes cut into 1/2-inch chunks
- 6 sprigs thyme
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 c. shredded rotisserie chicken
- 1 c. frozen corn, thawed
- Sliced fresh chives, for serving