Is fresh fruit and veg always best?
When you have run out of fresh fruit or vegies, or when they are too expensive or out of season – frozen, canned and dried varieties are great alternatives. Frozen, canned and dried fruit and veg are usually cheaper, they are available all year round, they have a longer shelf life, they are often preprepared and they can be just as nutritious. Frozen and canned fruit and veg have the same nutritional benefits as fresh. They are frozen or canned straight after picking, which locks the nutrients in.
Frozen fruit and veg can help reduce waste as you can simply keep them in the freezer for up to 12 months and use what you need as you go. Frozen fruit and veg can be bought pre-peeled, chopped and even cooked, saving you time!
Fantastic ways to use frozen fruit and veg:
- Add frozen veg such as peas and corn into a vegetable fritter
- Pack some frozen mixed veg into fried rice
- Add frozen edamame beans to a delicious poke bowl
- Throw in your favourite frozen veg into a warming winter soup
- Blend your choice of frozen fruit with some low-fat yoghurt into a refreshing iced dessert
- Frozen fruit is perfect in smoothies like our berrylicious smoothie
- Use frozen berries in muffins or pancakes like our blueberry and oat muffins
- Frozen fruit is a great addition on top of porridge – it also helps cool it down if you are in a hurry!
There are many benefits to canned fruit and veg. They can sit in the pantry until you need them, they are portable, many types are ready-to-eat and some types have added herbs and other flavours to make them even tastier!
Top health tips: Choose “no-added-salt” vegies if available. Go for fruit canned in juice rather than fruit in syrup.
- Add canned beetroot to sandwiches, wraps, rolls and burgers
- Use canned tomatoes in pasta sauces like in our roast pumpkin and tomato sauce recipe
- Add canned legumes such as kidney beans, black beans and brown lentils to mince dishes like these Mexican meatballs
- Use canned legumes such as cannellini beans in soups and salads like this classic bean salad
- Add crunch and protein to salads by including canned chickpeas like in this roast vegie and chickpea salad
You can keep dried fruit, veg and legumes in the pantry for ages and use them to add flavour, texture and nutrition to dishes.
Top tips for using dried fruit and veg:
- Add dried fruit such as sultanas or prunes to sweeten porridge
- Add dried lentils or split peas to winter warming soups such as this red lentil soup
- Use legumes such as chickpeas and lentils in curries such as this sweet potato and red lentil curry
- Cut the cost and boost the nutrients in bolognaise sauce by reducing the amount of meat and bulking up with lentils
- Add flavour to recipes with the addition of dried herbs and dried mushroom
Check out our recipes for more tasty ways to include fruit and vegies in your day.