Fall is here and with it comes an abundance of fresh fruits and veggies ripe for the picking. While pumpkins, apples and sweet potatoes get a lot of attention during this season, let’s recognize some other fall produce that are just as delicious and provide added health benefits.

Pears
Give apples a break this autumn by substituting them with pears. While pears, much like apples, are generally eaten in their natural state, they are incredibly versatile when it comes to cooking. Sweet and juicy, this fruit pairs perfectly with proteins like lamb or pork, as well as desserts. Poached pears with cinnamon and honey, anyone? In addition, pears are a good source of fiber, potassium, vitamin C and copper. 

Brussels sprouts
Members of the cabbage family, brussels sprouts are a fall veggie that is usually avoided at the dinner table. But when prepared correctly, this vegetable will make you come back for seconds. Brussels sprouts have a mild bitter taste, so they combine well with savory or tangy flavors. One popular preparation of brussels sprouts involves sautéing them with bacon – because bacon makes everything better! Aside from being masked in bacon fat, which isn’t very nutritious of course, Brussels sprouts have quite a few nutritional benefits including vitamin K, vitamin C, fiber, folate and antioxidants.

Pomegranate
Pomegranate juice has grown in popularity over the last few years, and for good reason. The pomegranate is a nutrition powerhouse packed with antioxidants and vitamin C to help boost your immune system. Pomegranate juice can be sweet or sour, so it’s perfect in marinades and sauces, and the seeds can be sprinkled onto salads for a burst of freshness. 

Mushrooms
When most people think of fall produce, mushrooms don’t really come to mind. While most mushrooms are available year-round, many reach their peak in the fall and winter. From chanterelles to shiitakes, mushrooms vary in shape, texture, color and flavor. But no matter which type of mushroom you choose to cook with, you’ll benefit from B vitamins like riboflavin, thiamine and niacin, as well as vitamin D and other minerals such as iron, copper and potassium. If you’re looking to add more mushrooms to your diet, try dicing them into omelets, salads, and side dishes like mushroom and brown rice risotto.

Parsnips
Parsnips are a root vegetable similar to carrots, but with a slightly sweeter taste. And much like carrots, they are very versatile and can be used in a variety of cooking methods. You can turn them into fries or chips, puree them into soups, roast them along with carrots, or mash them like potatoes. Parsnips are also an excellent source of vitamin C, fiber, manganese and folate.
Choosing apples