Keep the Menu Exciting
Take advantage of the cooler weather by serving hearty casseroles and stews. Additionally, winter is the perfect time to experiment with seasonal produce because prices are reasonable, and the nutritional value is at its peak. This post provides ideas to brighten your dinnertime with a meal plan of winter dinner ideas and the recipe links.
Why Buy In-Season Produce?
While most produce is available year-round, there are benefits to consuming produce at its peak. In-season fruits and vegetables boast superior taste and preserved vitamins and minerals. They are often locally grown, which supports local farmers who shorten shipping time and get products to the market sooner. This helps retain the nutrients and benefits the environment. Your taste buds will also thank you for thoughtfully planning a dinner with produce only available at certain times of the year.
Heat Up the Kitchen and the Meal Plan
During warmer months, many opt for quick cooking methods like grilling to avoid heating the kitchen. Winter is the perfect time to cook with warm and flavorful dishes that have been off the menu rotation. Try incorporating spices like red pepper flakes, hot smoked paprika, chili powder, cayenne pepper, red curry paste, curry powder, or ginger to add a little heat. To vary the menu, you can add classic dishes from warm-weather regions like Mexico or the Caribbean or spicy dishes from India or Italy. The weekly meal plan below incorporates warm spices and seasonal produce.
What Fruits to Buy in the Winter?
Delicious fruit options to work into your meal plan include:
- Blood Oranges
- Cara Cara Oranges
- Key Limes
- Meyer Lemons
Winter Vegetables In-Season
Winter Dinner Ideas
Winter’s here, but don’t let your dinner menu hibernate! Jazz up those taste buds with sizzling spices and seasonal produce. Try these winter dinner ideas that use seasonal veggies like broccoli, cabbage, and kale. Add some heat with herbs and spices. And let’s not forget winter fruits like blood oranges and pomegranates, perfect for salads that make your taste buds dance. Below is a week of winter meals and the recipe links.
Hearty Black Bean and Plantain Stew with Pepita Pesto
Tuna and Kale Pasta – Budget Friendly One-Dish Meal
Cabbage and Pomegranate Superfood Salad
Blood Orange Fennel Salad with Pistachios
Charred Poblano Coleslaw with Pepitas
Spice Up Your Menu
Try all these winter dinner ideas to warm up the dreary months. Your menu will be delicious, nutritious, and easy on the budget. Check out the USDA’s complete list of seasonal produce.