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Seasonal Ingredients In Italy

If you want to make sure that you are buying and preparing food economically, then you need to use seasonal ingredients.

This is the same when you are preparing Italian food. I like having all the seasonal ingredients ready at hand. To ensure that I am preparing seasonal food, which will taste much better. But, not everyone knows what the seasonal ingredients in Italy are. With this guide, you will now have a good idea of when it's best to buy certain seasonal ingredients in Italy. Then, you will save money and will be able to enjoy real seasonal meals.

Winter ingredients

There are some great ingredients that are in season during winter. Ingredients that can be expensive during the summer time. With these ingredients, you will be able to make some great, warm Italian dishes.

  • kale (cavolo riccio),
  • potatoes (patate),
  • broccoli (broccoli),
  • artichokes (carciofi),
  • thistle (cardo), cauliflower (cavolfiore),
  • cabbage (cavolo),
  • onions (cipolle),
  • spinach (spinaci),
  • oranges (arance),
  • clementines (clementine).

There are some other ingredients as well, however, these are the most popular ones that are a lot cheaper during the winter when compared to during spring and summer.

Seasonal ingredients that are cheaper during Spring

During Spring, there are some great ingredients that you can purchase. You will see that during the other seasons, these ingredients can be really expensive. So, our advice is to purchase in bulk during spring and freeze it until needed. That's what every mum and grandma does in Italy! This method will make it easier to use good ingredients out of season. These are the ingredients that you can find during Spring:

  • fava beans (fave),
  • asparagus (asparagi),
  • artichokes (carciofi),
  • zucchini flowers (Fiori di Zucca),
  • spring peas (Piselli), leeks (porri),
  • beets (barbabietole),
  • beans (fagioli),
  • garlic (aglio),
  • lemons (limoni), kiwi (kiwi),
  • strawberries (fragole),
  • cherries (ciliegie)

You will see that most of these ingredients can be frozen if prepared correctly. 

Seasonal Ingredients in Italy
Summer ingredients

It isn’t a secret that most people prefer summer ingredients. And that they are buying and using them throughout the year. This is because most of these ingredients are everyday ingredients that you need to prepare most Italian dishes. Again, it is recommended to buy in bulk and to freeze these ingredients. Then, you don’t need to purchase it at really high prices during the other seasons. These are some of the ingredients that we are talking about.

  • cucumbers (cetrioli),
  • eggplant (melanzane),
  • cantaloupe/melon (melone),
  • peppers (peperoni),
  • zucchini (zucchine),
  • basil (Basilico),
  • tomatoes (pomodori),
  • peas (Piselli), coconut (cocco),
  • peaches (pesche),
  • watermelon (cocomero/anguria),
  • berries (Frutta di Bosco),
  • plums (susine),

You will notice that most of the summer ingredients are the fruit ingredients that are making the best summer salads. This could explain also why fruit salads are so popular during the summer. I have never been to the beach without my mum packing a fruit salad in the cooler. 

Seasonal ingredients in Italy. Not many people are using in-season ingredients when they are preparing Italian meals. You can find some of these ingredients throughout the year, but when they are out of season, they are more expensive: they are imported and don't taste the same. It is always a great idea to know what fruit and vegetables are available in what season. Then, you will be able to prepare the best Italian meals, with the right, seasonal ingredients. Ensuring that you save a little money too.