Use This Seasonal Guide to Pick the Perfect Veggies

By Jacqueline Saguin
Pick the Perfect Veggies

There’s nothing more deceiving than buying vibrant foods only to unleash a bitter taste onto your taste buds after you’ve taken a bite. Shop smarter and not harder by knowing when it’s prime time to pick the perfect veggies, and find fresh ingredients at a local farmers market. Vegetables actually cost less when they’re in season! Use this guide to find out when is the best time to buy!

Spring Summer Fall Winter
ALFALFA SPOUTS X Look for crispy and bright sprouts, with buds intact.
ARTICHOKE X Look for ones with a dusty green color. Avoid those with purple and profound blemishes.
ASPARAGUS X X X Look for a bright, rich green color all around with closed, compact tips.
BEET X X Look for one that is firm and round, with a rich color and slender root. Avoid wilted tops.
BROCCOLI X X Look for compact buds with crisp, green leaves.
BRUSSELS SPROUTS X X Look for one that is bright green, compact and free of blemishes.
CABBAGE X X Look for firm leaves without browning or markings. Darker leaves mean more flavor.
CARROT X Look for ones that are plump, smooth and without cracks. Buy with stems attached so they keep their moisture.
CAULIFLOWER X X Look for flowers that are clean and creamy white, with thick green leaves. Avoid spotted and separated flowers.
CELERY X X Look for ones that are light green, compact and glossy.
CORN X X X Press against husk to feel individual kernels. Make sure there aren’t holes where kernels should be. Silk should be stiff and moist.
GARLIC X X X Look for large, firm and silky skins.
GREEN BEAN X X Look for slender beans that are crisp, bright-colored, and unblemished.
KALE X X X Look for leaves that are moist, crisp, unwilted and unblemished.
LETTUCE X X Avoid wilted, discolored leaves.
LEEKS X Look for ones that are white and light green. Stalks should be crisp and firm. Avoid mostly dark green or yellowed tops.
MUSHROOM X X X X Look for clean, firm texture. They are delicate and highly perishable, so eat soon after purchase. Avoid dark browning or watery spots.
OKRA X Look for ones that are bright green. Firm, but tender.
ONION X X X Look for ones that feel heavy for their size with dry, papery skins, without signs of spotting or moistness. Shouldn’t have any smell.
PEAS X X Look for firm, velvety pods that are medium green. Gently shake the pod. Avoid if there’s a rattling sound, as it’s likely they’re uneven in size.
POTATO X Look for ones that are smooth and unbruised.
RADISH X X Look for bright, perky greens. The leaves are the tell-tale of the root.
ROMANESCO X X Look for ones that are dense and uniform in color.
RUTABAGA X Look for ones that are unbruised and unblemished, with purpleish skin.
SPINACH X Look for leaves that are bright and vivid green. Avoid wilted or liquidy leaves.
SWEET POTATO X X Look for firm with smooth, bright, uniformly light tan skins.
TURNIPS X X X Look for ones that are firm, without any blemishes. Feels heavy for its size. If the greens are attached, they should be brightly colored and fresh

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