Spring has sprung! This is my favorite season, and the beautiful weather is only one part of it. The other glorious thing about spring is the abundance of delicious spring veggies hitting the farmer’s market.
Part of seasonal eating is changing your meal strategies with the seasons. The warmer weather means a different assortment of fresh vegetables to work with. It’s a lot of fun, but if you’re not used to cooking with some of the spring veggies at the market, it can also be challenging. That’s why each vegetable on the list below includes a recipe suggestion to get you started.
14 Spring Veggies
Health benefits: Artichokes are high in potassium, which makes them beneficial to your heart’s health. The antioxidants in this spring veggie also help support immune health.
Health Benefits: Fresh asparagus is rich in something called inulin, a prebiotic that’s great for your digestive tract. For the maximum benefit, try to find asparagus that’s been recently picked – it loses its benefits more rapidly than some other spring veggies.
How to eat it: Check out these 11 yummy asparagus recipes!
Health benefits: You already know that broccoli is good for you, but how exactly? Broccoli’s health benefits include lowering cholesterol and helping us rebuild our vitamin D stores. It also contains a compound called kaempferol that has strong anti-inflammatory properties.
How to eat it: Cook it up into a hearty soup.
Health benefits: Collards have a similar nutritional profile to kale and even surpass it in some places! They’re high in protein, calcium, and vitamin K. You can read more about collards and their health benefits here.
How to eat it: Did you know that you can eat collard greens in a raw salad, just like kale?
Health benefits: This spring green includes a healthy dose of kaempferol, and anti-inflammatory that can be especially helpful to folks with allergies.
How to eat it: Pair flavorful endive with deeply-seasoned dressing like in this salad recipe.
Health benefits: Kale is taking a little bit of flack lately, but don’t give up on this nutrient-dense superfood! While too much can cause trouble for your thyroid and kidneys, a couple of servings a week aren’t going to hurt you. Isn’t moderation the key to everything?
How to eat it: Have you made your own kale chips yet?
Health benefits: Leafy salad greens can help with weight loss, protect your heart, and even contribute protein to your diet. Read more on which lettuces are best!
How to eat it: Do you get sick of salads in the spring? Check out these non-salad lettuce recipes!
8. Mustard Greens
Health benefits: Tangy mustard greens share a lot of the healthy goodness of other dark-and-leafies, like kale and collards. They contain compounds that help protect us from cancer and have anti-inflammatory properties.
How to eat it: Wilt these spring veggies into a hearty soup.
Health benefits: This antioxidant-rich green protects us from cancer and supports heart health
How to eat it: Try radicchio sauteed with Brussels sprouts in a sweet and tangy glaze.
Health benefits: Tangy sorrel may help lower blood pressure.
How to eat it: Use sorrel to add a lemony bite to your pesto.
Health benefits: Spinach contains compounds that protect our digestive tracts and can help protect your body from certain types of cancer, such as prostate cancer. Spinach is high in calcium, but it also contains calcium-blocking compounds, so don’t count on this leafy green for meeting your body’s calcium needs.
How to eat it: Put a spin on spinach with this vegan version of the classic Indian saag paneer.
12. Swiss chard
Health benefits: Like spinach, chard contains calcium-blocking compounds, so it’s not good for meeting your RDA for calcium. You can count on Swiss chard for a heavy dose of antioxidants, anti-inflammatories, and detox support.
How to eat it: Go raw, and add some chard to your morning smoothie.
Health benefits: Onions might seem like a run-of-the mill spring veggie, but they’re actually very nutritious. They contain compounds that have been shown to protect your body from colorectal, laryngeal, ovarian, and oral cancers.
How to eat it: You probably don’t need a recipe for onions, but you probably do need to try these awesome baked onion rings!
Health benefits: Watercress helps keep your eyes healthy and supports liver and kidney health.
How to eat it: Check out a few cooking suggestions and lots of nutritional information on this tender spring green!