If you’re hoping to expand your notion of seasonal eating, this is the perfect time to start! Spring is the season for young and tender treats right from the garden. Snack on spring foods such as raw peas and radishes, add fresh spring fruits such as berries to cereal, and get ready for crisp salads every day. Spring is also the favorite season of food foragers.
Most of the foods in this article are likely to be in season during spring in many parts of the United States. You should be able to find the best deals on these foods this time of year in grocery stores and at farmers markets, which means it’s a good time to stock up on items that preserve well. For example, you may want to dry fresh spring herbs and freeze seasonal berries for later use. (To learn more about when and how to preserve foods, see “Enjoy Fresh, Local Food All Year.” To see which foods are in season in your area, click on your state at this Seasonal Ingredient Map.)
Herbs: chervil, chives, dill, horseradish root, mint, parsley, tarragon
Salad greens: arugula (rocket), baby lettuces, endive, mâche (corn salad), mizuna, pac choi, sorrel, spinach, watercress
Cooking greens: beet greens, chard, collards, kale, radish greens, spinach, turnip greens
Root veggies: beets, parsnips, radishes, salad turnips
Sea veggies: dulse, various kelps (such as kombu and wakame), nori (laver), wrack
Fruits: apricots, blackberries, blueberries, boysenberries, cherries, nectarines, peaches, plums, raspberries, rhubarb (not technically a fruit), strawberries
Ephemeral garden treats: garlic scapes, pea shoots
Wild edibles: cactus pears, cattails, claytonia (miner’s lettuce), dandelion greens, fiddlehead ferns, lamb’s quarters, morel mushrooms, nettles, pokeweed, purslane, ramps (wild leeks)
Garden veggies: asparagus, garden peas, potatoes, scallions, spring onions, sugar snap peas
Meat: Most pasture-raised meat and wild game is best in the fall and winter, but spring is a great time to stock up on frozen and aged meats. In some areas, there is also a spring turkey season.
Fish: Spring is the season for most freshwater fish including bass, carp, catfish, crappie, pike, salmon, sunfish, trout and walleye. Saltwater seasons vary.
Dairy: Fresh milk and cheeses made with milk from animals that graze on green pasture are highly nutritious in late spring.
Eggs: Fresh farm eggs are rich with omega-3 fatty acids and other grass-derived nutrients in spring.
Nuts and seeds: Because most kinds of nuts are not harvested in the spring, you will want to choose roasted nuts for the best flavor. (Note: Nuts freeze well, so stock up like a squirrel in fall when they are in season.)
For more on seasonal eating, read the original article, “Eating with the Seasons.”