Who doesn’t like a great piece of juicy ripe fruit; like when you bite into that perfectly ripe pear and the juice starts running down your chin? Or, that Clementine that is oh so sweet that you grab another and another. There is a bounty of colorful winter fruits for snacking on or to perk up your smoothies, salads, and recipes. What Fruits Are In Season in January? I bet you can guess.
First Published: Jan. 26, 2018… Last Updated: Dec. 27, 2019
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Why eat seasonal produce?
- Eating fruit that is in season offers you the best selection of fresh and naturally ripened produce that is at its peak for eating.
- Most fruit is available all year long but eating seasonally guarantees you get the best the fruit has to offer in flavor, texture, and nutrition.
- Buying fruit that is in season is less expensive because there is more of it.
- Buying fruit from your local farmer allows you to buy or pick fruit at its peak of ripeness. Plus buying local supports farmers in your area.
January is the month for citrus
- Grapefruit – red, pink, and white and Pomelos – this super nutritious fruit has the most water of any fruit. Pick the heaviest of these fruits for the best tasting since more sugar to get a sweeter fruit.
- Lemons – did you know lemons originated from limes? There are 25 varieties of lemons but the Eureka, Lisbon and the sweeter Meyer lemons with their floral flavor are the most popular and are all highly nutritious. Look for thin-skinned lemons for a juicier fruit. Even though you can buy lemons all year long they are at their best in the winter months.
- Limes – limes have the most acid of any fruit and are valued for their flavoring from the juice and the zest. Try adding lime juice to drinks and the juice and zest to Asian, Mexican, and Indian dishes.
- Oranges – Cara Cara, Blood Oranges, Navel Oranges – all prized for Vitamin C and minerals. Eat all types of oranges during their peak season from December to April for the sweetest and juiciest fruits. Oranges have so many uses.
- Oranges make the best snack ever. Just peel and eat!
- Make orange juice to brighten your morning.
- Zest the peel and add to all kinds of baked goods and recipes.
- Make candied orange peel for a sweet dessert.
- Homemade orange marmalade is easy to make.
- Mandarins – Sumo, Satsuma, Clementines, Tangelos, Tangerines – Think Snack!!!! These easy to peel citruses are perfect as a take-along snack, tuck a couple in your lunch box. These super-sweet Mandarins are kid-friendly too!
The Colors of Citrus
Pears are in season during January
- Red D’Anjou Pears – these sweet dark red pears are delicious eaten either firm or soft, try them in salads or on a cheeseboard.
- Bosc Pears – have that beautiful long neck and bronzy cinnamon color with a crisp texture. These pears are great poached and baked and offer a spicey honey flavor.
- D’Anjou Pears – a true winter pear with the familiar green skin that does not change color as it ripens. This is one of the best snacking pears for its wonderful citrus flavor and juiciness.
Late Season Apples in January
- Braeburn Apples – This is an all-around great apple for eating, baking, or making applesauce. Look for the red, yellow and orange splotched skins in this medium-sized slightly sweet, and slightly tart fragrant apple.
- Cortland Apples – This bright red apple from New York are a variety of Macintosh apples that are a great baking apple and also delicious for salads and cheese boards. Cortlands have dense flesh and do not turn brown when cut, however, they should be eaten or used soon after picking as they do not keep well.
- Fuji Apples – This is one of the largest apple varieties originating in Japan and brought to the stores in 1962. This sweet and very crispy apple has a dense flesh that stores for a long time and is one of the most popular varieties of apples worldwide.
- Honeycrisp Apples – this fairly new apple variety was developed in Minnesota and hit the store in 1991 and has gained popularity. Honeycrisps have a firm texture and are both sweet and tart which makes them a perfect eating apple. This apple retains its beautiful golden/red color and stores well.
- Pink Lady Apples – the first apple called by its branded name and its variety name is Cripps Pink. This Australian apple was developed in the 1970s. In order to obtain the classic Pink Lady Apple coloring, these apples need to grow in a warm climate with a long growing season.
- Rome Beauty Apples – these large round apples have a tough red skin that makes great baking apples since they hold their shape well. Bite into this crisp apple that has a whitish-green flesh and a juicy and slightly tart flavor for some wonderful flavor. Rome Beauty apples are also known as Rome Reds
- York Apples – This long-time favorite lopsided apple from Pennsylvania is crispy and sweet. York apples make great tasting pies or applesauce.
Winter Fruit Bowl
Grapefruit, Pears, Apples, Lemons, Limes, and Oranges
Displaying fruit on the counter adds a colorful statement and plus makes it easy to grab. Here’s a great 2-tiered fruit basket that will show off your beautiful fruit.
Try these One Hot Oven recipes using January’s fruits
Need some helpful fruit kitchen gadgets?
To get the juice out of citrus there are three types of reamers, a handheld citrus reamer, this tool is perfect for quickly adding citrus juice to a recipe. A tabletop reamer works well when juicing a couple of pieces of fruit, and an electric citrus juicer is perfect for those batches of lemonade.
Try a citrus squeezer that has two handles that squeeze together to juice citrus. And for peeling fruit, this Y-shaped fruit and veggie peeler is a favorite. The blade is very sharp and takes off the peel without cutting into the fruit.
Living in California offers us an amazing variety of fruit. The lemons and grapefruit shown are from my backyard trees. It is so nice to just walk out my door and pick fruit. The apples and pears came from local orchards in Apple Hill in Camino, California.
There are so many amazing fruits grown worldwide with different growing seasons. Make sure to check what fruits are seasonally available where you live and visit your local orchard or farmer’s markets.
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From learning to cook on a farm in Indiana to culinary school in California, my passion for food is never-ending. Turning on my oven to bake something for friends and family is my happy place, and I am glad to be here at One Hot Oven sharing both sweet and savory recipes with all my baking friends.