There’s nothing like eating local fruit and veg that’s right in season. Not only is it at its very best and full of delicious flavour, it also hasn’t travelled far to reach your table.
Here in the UK, think refreshing berries in the summer, comforting root veg (like potatoes and parsnips) in winter, and vibrant greens and asparagus in spring. Eating seasonal vegetables is a great way to discover new flavours, keep your diet varied and save a bit of money, too, as it’s often more affordable. Local and seasonal produce is also fresher, tastier, and can be more nutritious than food that’s out of season. And lastly, it’s better for the environment, too, as it reduces production and transportation costs. It’s a win-win for you and the planet, so if you’ve not yet embraced eating seasonally before, give it a go!
To help, we’ve put together a simple guide to seasonal cooking that will give you all the inspiration you need to get the best out of the beautiful selection of fresh produce available in the UK.
For more budget-friendly recipes and tips, head to our hub.
The ground is hard and the air is frosty, but while much of the veg patch is in hibernation, some hardier British produce is in its prime right now. Look for big leafy cabbages, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts, as well as leeks and root veg, such as parsnips and swedes.
With chilly temperatures and long winter days, February is a month of hearty veg like sweet potato, celeriac and purple sprouting broccoli that work well in wholesome, comforting dishes. Have a go at making a warm winter salad, this smoky sweet potato chilli or check out our seasonal guide on what to eat in February.
Just after peak root-veg season and before the bountiful months of spring greens, March is sometimes called the ‘hungry gap’ by gardeners. Although the garden might not be heaving with produce, there are lots of amazing flavours at their very best in March. Here are three of our favourites along with delicious ideas for the best ways to enjoy them.
Spring is in the air and the garden is waking up! We’re so excited to dive into all the beautiful early summer produce, which is ripening at this very moment. And right now, some real British gems like new potatoes, spring greens and rhubarb are at their very best.
May is blooming marvellous! From sweet young shoots to beautiful seafood like crab and mackerel, there’s a wonderful variety of produce to enjoy at this time of year. It’s a month for lighter dishes that suit the brighter days and we love it! Check out these three seasonal May recipes to get you started.
MORE: for seasonal vegetables inspo and recipes head to The Vegepedia
The days are getting warmer, nights are getting shorter and soon markets will be fit-to-burst with gorgeous summer produce, such as summer berries and broad beans. Cooking what’s in season is an absolute joy in June, so we’re championing a few seasonal stars and showing you some of the best ways to enjoy them.
With British summer in full swing, July is a month of beautiful, vibrant produce to enjoy in the sunshine. Expect super-fresh runner beans, juicy strawberries and cherries and lots of summer salad favourites like gorgeous tomatoes and earthy beetroots.
Need some recipe inspo? Celebrate this month’s seasonal heroes with these three gorgeous recipes.
As August arrives so does a new bounty of fruit and veg. Broccoli, carrots and courgettes are at their best this month, and look out for the final harvest of peas, beans and salad leaves. Brilliant summer berries like raspberries, blackberries and redcurrants can be eaten as is, or used in a variety of dessert recipes.
As summer’s heat simmers down to an autumnal glow, all sorts of British ingredients come into their own. Early autumn is when classic hedgerow fruits such as damsons and elderberries are at their best. It’s also the beginning of the wild mushroom season, as well as the time to start enjoying native nuts such as cob nuts and chestnuts.
The golden month of harvest festivals and Halloween, October is all about crunchy apples, juicy pears, plump game birds, British nuts, wild mushrooms and – of course – pumpkins! There are also lots of native British seafood and shellfish in season, with even more to come as we head into the winter. Think clams, mussels and winkles, as well as white fish such as coley, monkfish and bream. Here are a few of our favourite seasonal treats.
The darkening days of November are the perfect time to enjoy in-season produce like kale, which can be wilted in a flash and Brussels sprouts, which make the perfect accompaniment to lots of dishes – not just Christmas dinner! And don’t forget to make the most of globe artichokes and red cabbage, which are coming to the end of their season.
December brings with it some fantastic veg, including parsnips, celery and leeks. British apples and pears are still thriving and seafood is also abundant in these colder months – it’s a great time to eat oysters, clams, langoustines and more. Here are two of our favourite recipes to celebrate this month’s ingredients.
Hungry for more? Make the most of your leftovers with these handy tips and tricks