By Team Best Life
You already know that fruit is loaded with good-for-you nutrients, including fiber, vitamins and phytochemicals, all of which can keep you healthy, so we’ll save that lecture again. Choices certainly become a bit more limited in the fall and winter (unless you want to shell out for expensive imports), but there are plenty of in-season fruits that totally satisfy your sweet tooth. Our favorite way to get our fruit fix: Have it for dessert. Fruit is the perfect base for desserts because it’s naturally sweet. So this season, grab your favorite fall or winter fruit and bake, poach, or even grill your way to five a day.
Pop some fruit in the oven for a warm, melt-in-your-mouth treat. You can make a fruit crisp or crumble, which features a crunchy, sweet topping, or a fruit slump, which boasts a moister topping that literally slumps into the fruit while it’s baking. Or top your baked fruit with a little chocolate, as in this Baked Pear with Chocolate Sauce recipe.
Simmer your fruit in liquid with a bit of sugar to create a juicy and mouthwatering dish. Want a little more flavor? Try adding some of your favorite spices, as shown in this recipe for Poached Fall Fruit: Grapes, Apples and Pears with Cinnamon, Cardamom and Anise.
Pick your favorite fruit and make your own puree. It’s easier than you think. Simply follow these steps, then stir two tablespoons of puree into plain non-fat yogurt or pour into Popsicle molds for a chilly treat.
Throwing fruit on the grill (or on a grill pan) helps lock in the flavor because the heat reduces the fruit’s water content and caramelizes the natural sugars. Almost any fruit will work, including peaches, pineapple, pears, apples and plums. Simply cut it in half, remove the stone, lightly spray with vegetable cooking oil, and throw on the grill. Once you get a nice black grill mark, flip and repeat with the other side. You can even top with a small scoop of ice cream or frozen yogurt. Try this Balsamic Grilled Mangos and Peaches.
Love ice cream sundaes but don’t love all those calories? Try blending some of your favorite toppings (think chocolate and nuts) with skim or low-fat milk, almond milk or low-fat yogurt and some fruit to create a healthy smoothie. This time of year, frozen fruit comes in handy; frozen berries and mangoes are naturals in smoothies (thicken it up a little by throwing in a ripe banana). Or skip the smoothie and go for fruit-based ice cream, like this recipe for One Ingredient Banana Ice Cream.