A Seasonal Fruit Guide for Your Next Farmer's Market Trip

Give me all of the watermelon this summer and Vitamin C-rich fruits in the winter.

Jamie Bichelman - Author
By

Jun. 4 2024, Published 11:28 a.m. ET

A smiling young girl and her mom purchase strawberries from a smiling farmers market vendor.
Source: iStock

In the U.S., various fresh fruits make their way in and out of farmers markets and grocery stores depending on the season. It can be a tantalizing wait every bit as exciting as a new movie premiere for your favorite fruit (mine's watermelon) to greet you and enthusiastically whisk you away to your favorite season.

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Check out our guide below to make sure you're capitalizing on the peak months to shop for the freshest fruit at the perfect time.

A smiling woman compares a pineapple in one hand with a pomegranate in another hand.
Source: iStock
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What fruit is in season in the spring?

Some of the juiciest, sweetest, richest fruits are available during the spring season, many of which are perfect to snack on, include in your breakfast fruit smoothie, toss into a spring salad, or bake into a dessert.

If you're a fan of sweet, tangy, and tart, you're going to love the top fruits on this list via The Pioneer Woman:

  • Strawberries
  • Pineapple
  • Rhubarb
  • Meyer Lemons (a cross between a lemon and a sweet orange)
  • Mangoes
  • Apricots
  • Blueberries
  • Kumquats
  • Sweet Cherries
  • Mulberries
  • Grapefruits
  • Grapes

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's SNAP-Ed Connection, additional spring season produce includes:

  • Apples
  • Bananas
  • Kiwifruit
  • Lemons and Limes
  • Rhubarb
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A smiling woman in a yellow shirt picks a mango from a fruit stand inside a market.
Source: iStock

What fruit is in season in the summer?

Seriously, is there anything more liberating than breaking free from your work or school day, biting into ripe summer fruit, and feeling the warm sun on your skin? If you're a big fan of sweet and tart fruits this season, now is your time to step up and shout: give me all the berries!

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There are some noticeable similarities between the seasons when it comes to various fruits, which is natural given overlapping growing seasons, and some fruits are specially bred to be hardier throughout the year. Per the USDA, here are the summer season fruits to add to your shopping list:

  • Mangos
  • Tomatoes
  • Melon
  • Lemons
  • Beets
  • Blueberries
  • Bananas
  • Strawberries
  • Apples
  • Cantaloupe
  • Cherries
  • Peaches
  • Plums
  • Raspberries
  • Limes
  • Honeydew
  • Apricots
  • Blackberries
  • Watermelon

Aside from a plate of ice-cold watermelon to refresh the body and refuel the tummy after a summer run, my heaven includes the best stone fruit around — juicy mangoes, and lots of them.

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A family picks fresh apples from their local market.
Source: iStock

What fruit is in season in the fall?

Perhaps you are a vegan athlete following a nutritious meal plan in the summer and training for the bevy of fall season marathons and 5k races. The fruit in the fall season will sustain your energy and carry you through the finish line as the weather cools.

Or maybe you're indulging in the coziness of autumn and seeking the perfect seasonal fruit to complement your pumpkin spice latte in the morning.

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According to Delish, here are the best fruits to buy during the fall season:

  • Cranberries
  • Pomegranates
  • Pears
  • Kumquats
  • Apples
  • Key limes
  • Grapes
  • Quinces
  • Persimmons
  • Passion fruit
  • Guava
  • Figs

Speaking of: to celebrate the season and incorporate the sweetest fall fruits and veggies, we also recommend this vegan apple pie recipe, this vegan pumpkin pie recipe, and this vegan sweet potato pie recipe from Michelle Cehn at World of Vegan.

A man in a yellow coat stands on a ladder against an orange tree and picks oranges from the tree.
Source: iStock

What fruit is in season in the winter?

Although I have found the winter months to be stigmatized as featuring no fresh fruit, that couldn't be further from the truth. In fact, many fruits that are rich in Vitamin C and other important nutrients are available to keep you healthy and strong through the harsh cold. Per Forks Over Knives, these winter season fruits include:

  • Kumquats
  • Apples
  • Grapefruit
  • Persimmons
  • Kiwis
  • Lemons
  • Oranges
  • Clementines
  • Pears
  • Tangerines
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