Planning your meals based around the seasonality of your ingredients doesn’t just mean that you get to enjoy when they’re at their ripest and tastiest, but they should also be more nutritious and affordable too.
We’re going to take a quick run through the year to see which fresh produce is in season for each month.
While the start of the year is generally something of a grey and dull month as we all recover from Christmas, which we associated with traditional vegetables like cabbage, cauliflower and turnips, remember that citrus fruits are also in season at this time too and could be a good way to brighten up these dark winter days.
As the cold really starts to bite in February, turn to winter warming ingredients such as goose, venison as well as seafood such as oysters and mussels and various types of fish.
This is also the time of year that rhubarb comes into season, perfect to make a crumble for dessert.
As we enter spring and the days start to get longer, the likes of spinach and spring greens start to come into season, as well as more fish such as salmon and halibut.
With the temperatures slowly starting to rise, it’s time to make the most of spring’s seasonal produce, some of which is only available for a fairly short period of time! Seasonal highlights include crab, new potatoes, peas, radish and more.
May sees lots of classic British classics come into season, with the highlight being the asparagus, but keep an eye out for fresh aubergine, carrots, artichoke, mackerel and more.
While it’s in season all year round, May is also the perfect time to enjoy some spring lamb, especially as mint is in season too to make a sauce with!
Summer is the prime growing period, which means we start to see the widest variety of produce coming into season around now.
Highlights include berries such as raspberries as well as black and redcurrants and cherries, but don’t forget broad beans, peas and tomatoes too.
With Wimbledon taking place, it’s a good job that strawberries are ripe in season during July to enjoy with some cream (you could even try your hand at growing your own?). July also sees the return of broccoli, celery, figs, marrow, peach and more!
Although summer is starting to slow down, there’s still plenty of great produce to enjoy, for example, it’s the only month where crab apples are in season and one of only two where you can get fresh sweetcorn!
Also be sure to keep an eye out for, elderberries, plum and fowl such as goose and grouse.
Autumn sees lots of fruits come into season which can be frozen or preserved to be used as we head back into the colder months such as apples, blackberries, damsons and pear. Other ‘in season’ ingredients include chestnuts, celeriac, guinea fowl, kale and more.
Of course, pumpkins are the highlight for October, with Halloween coming up at the end of the month.
However, be sure not to forget about other seasonal produce such as duck, cranberry, and root vegetables like turnips.
As the temperatures start to drop again, it’s back to hearty warming produce such as roast dinners and soups.
The likes of Jerusalem artichokes, swede, and Bramley apples also come into season around November time.
Of course, December’s two big seasonal products are turkey and Brussels Sprouts, but be sure to check out pomegranates and clementines to bring a bit of zest to these dark, cold months.
This is just a quick run through some of the highlights for each month, but if you want a more in-depth look at exactly which ingredients come in season when, check out this handy chart from BBC Good Food.