As we head into autumn, a whole feast of British fruit comes into season, from firm favourites like plums and blackberries to lesser-known gems such as loganberries and greengages.
Some of these fruits can be found in supermarkets, or you can grab a bag and get picking from hedgerows (just make sure you leave some for wildlife) or visit your local fruit farm, which makes for a fun autumnal activity!
There are so many ways you can use up these seasonal fruits – most can be enjoyed simply as they are or used in sweet and savoury dishes, as well as drinks. Whether it’s making homemade jams and chutneys, whizzing them up in smoothies or transforming them into the most beautiful puddings, there are so many possibilities.
We’ve put together a list of soft and stone fruits and ways you can use them, giving you all the inspiration you need to make the most of these delicious seasonal fruits so they don’t go to waste.
For more seasonal inspo, check out our collection of warming autumn recipes
These bountiful berries come into their own between August and October. There are so many ways you can enjoy blackberries, but we love them in this quick and easy blackberry fool, as a bold dressing for tasty greens or blitzed up in a smoothie. If you’ve got the time, pair them with sweet shortcrust pastry for the ultimate apple pie.
A cross between a raspberry and blackberry, these dark red berries are in season throughout August and September and have a delicate flavour that’s the perfect mix of sweet and sour. Make a jar of loganberry jam to enjoy them into autumn, or add them with other berries in this mixed berry tart.
In season from August to early October, these incredibly versatile fruits can be eaten raw or used in a variety of different dishes. Have a go at making a refreshing plum sorbet or this spiced plum chutney, which makes a great foodie gift! You can also transform juicy plums into a fire-roasted sauce to accompany crispy duck legs. For more inspiration, check out our favourite plum recipes.
These small, green stone fruits start to ripen around late August and September, and when perfectly ripe, they’re sweet and succulent with a gorgeous honey flavour. They’re delicious in a homemade chutney with warm spices like nutmeg and cinnamon and in sweet pies and crumbles. Greengages are full of pectin, too, which makes them perfect for jam making!
Similar to plums, but smaller and more tart, damsons are at their best in September and October. They’re generally too tart to be eaten raw, but they work a treat in jams, jellies and desserts, or steeped in gin and vodka. Try using damsons in this stewed fruit recipe and dollop over cereal, yoghurt, pancakes, granola or even roast pork.
In season from September to November, sloes are small, blue-black berries with an intense plum flavour. Although they’re too bitter to be eaten raw, they taste superb when preserved. Have a go at making sloe gin – serve it as an aperitif on a crisp winter’s day, use it to make a beautiful sloe gin gravlax or wrap it up as a gorgeous Christmas gift.