5 Fall & Winter Vegetables for Hearty Meals

Michiganders can enjoy locally grown produce even when the snow starts to fall. Many locally grown vegetables have growing seasons that extend into the winter, including root vegetables, leafy greens, cruciferous vegetables and squash. These hearty winter vegetables store well for several days to several weeks—making this time of year a great time to use your Double Up Food Bucks. Plus, winter vegetables can add valuable nutrients to your favorite comfort foods and sweater-weather meals.  

Let’s explore 5 versatile fall and winter veggies that deserve the spotlight: 

Cauliflower 

Cauliflower is about as versatile as a vegetable gets. If you aren’t a fan of this vegetable raw, consider roasting, mashing or ricing your cauliflower. And much like a hearty mushroom or bountiful nightshade, cauliflower can make for a satisfying main dish or a substantial side thanks to its nutty taste. And like most cruciferous vegetables, cauliflower comes with cancer-fighting phytonutrients, fiber and B-vitamins. 

Availability: August-November in Michigan 

How to Store: Fresh cauliflower can last up to two weeks if kept away from moisture in the fridge, two to three days at room temperature and up to one year in the freezer. Checkout additional using, storing and preserving tips from our partners at Michigan State University. 

Recipe: Cauliflower SteakMake it the main dish! 

 

Cabbage  

Savory cabbage has a long harvest period—making it a budget-friendly produce staple chock full of fiber, vitamins C and K, folate, potassium, manganese, iron and magnesium. Some cabbage varieties peak between November and April, making winter a prime time to try new recipes. Besides fresh salads and slaws, cabbage can be steamed, sauteed and even roasted. And don’t’ forget: Cabbage can be fermented into kimchi and sauerkraut! 

Availability: Different varieties are available throughout the year in Michigan. 

How to Store: Cabbage can stay fresh for several weeks at 41 F or below. You can even store cabbage at room temperatures like you would potatoes or onions. Checkout additional using, storing and preserving tips from our partners at Michigan State University. 

Recipe: Easy Roasted Cabbage RecipeFrom acclaimed chef and food journalist J. Kenji López-Alt. 

 

Brussels Sprouts 

Say what you will about Brussels sprouts, but these cold-weather beauties have been making a big come back! They may look like cute baby cabbages, but these nutritional powerhouses are full of vitamins A, B, C, and K, along with healthy fiber and 3.4 grams of protein per serving. Enjoy Brussels sprouts whole-roasted, slice and sauté them into a warm salad, or add them to winter soups, pastas and casseroles.  

Availability: August-December in Michigan 

How to Store: Fresh Brussels sprouts can last one week in the fridge in a perforated plastic bag, three to four days at room temperature and up to one year in the freezer. Checkout additional using, storing and preserving tips from our partners at Michigan State University. 

Recipe: Roasted Apples & Brussels Sprouts  – A little sweet, a little savory. 

  

Collard Greens  

While the winter is a great time to enjoy hearty greens, collards can be a year-round staple. Each large leaf is high in calcium, iron and vitamin C and K. Collard greens are important to the Black food tradition, and there are so many ways to prepare this winter vegetable 

Availability: Year-round in Michigan 

How to Store: Unwashed collard greens can last up to a week when kept with moist paper towels in a sealed plastic bad in the refrigerator. Checkout additional using, storing and preserving tips from our partners at Michigan State University. 

Recipe: Brazilian-Style Collard Greens – Culinary historian Dr. Jessica B. Harris’ favorite Thanksgiving side dish.  

  

Winter Squash 

While you can add Michigan squash to your table during any season, winter offers some delicious options. Common varieties of winter squash include acorn squash, butternut squash, delicata squash, and spaghetti squash.  

Availability: Different varieties are available throughout the year in Michigan. 

How to Store: Stored in a cool, dry, and well-ventilated area, thick-skinned winter squash can last several weeks at room temperature and a few months in 50-55 F. Checkout additional using, storing and preserving tips from our partners at Michigan State University. 

Recipe: Roasted Delicata SquashA perfect addition to a winter salad or grain dish. 

 

 

 

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