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Peaches: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know

peaches

Peaches are one of my all-time favorite fruits. Here in the south, they are starting to roll out and you can find them at any farm stand, grocer, or roadside fruit stand.

I have always liked peaches, but since moving to the south I have fallen IN LOVE with them! Not only are they yummy and versatile, they are nutritious too.  This sweet, juicy, and tender fruit isn’t just a great treat–it is packed full of good-for-you nutrition that your family can benefit from.  What better (or tastier) way for your kids to meet their recommended “Five A Day”?

Peach Fruit Facts

  • They originated in China
  • China is still the world’s largest producer
  • The United Sates produces about 25% of the world’s peaches
  • Although Georgia is the peach state, about half of the peaches grown in the U.S. are from California
  • Peaches grow on trees with beautiful blossoms and belong to the rose family
  • The pit contains a poisonous substance–hence, keep away from experimenting toddlers..and puppies!
  • They come in hundreds of varieties
  • There are 2 types: clingstone and freestone

Why Pick Peaches?

They are yummy and good for you.  They contain antioxidants, fiber, potassium, Vitamin B3, and are a good source of Vitamins A (beta-carotene) and C.  They are also fat-, cholesterol-, and sodium-free.  All of these factors help prevent chronic diseases and obesity, which means they are a great choice for growing bodies.

When to Pick 

Although they are available almost year-round, they are best in July and August.   Your family can also enjoy canned or frozen peaches anytime.

How to Pick 

  • They should have a nice “peachy” fragrance
  • They shouldn’t be too firm, and yield slightly to pressure
  • When shopping, choose ripe-picked fruit with a bright yellow background
  • Peaches spoil easily, so don’t buy too many at one time
  • Don’t buy soft, bruised or blemished fruits
  • Don’t refrigerate unripe peaches

How to Prepare Them

From al fresco to a la mode, there are countless ways to enjoy this succulent fruit.  Try some of these suggestions:

  • As a fresh snack, alone, or over cottage cheese
  • On hot or cold cereals
  • Frozen and blended into a smoothie
  • With grilled or roasted meats
  • On a salad
  • In place of other fruits in your favorite recipes, such as Peach Shortcake
  • Grilled, baked, sliced, diced, or pureed

No matter how you slice it, peaches are a great summer fruit for your family.  Take advantage of their peak season and buy a bunch today!

Contributing Author:  Cami Ruark

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  1. My husband and I both adore peaches so were pleasantly surprised that our son (7.5 months old) also LOVES them! We just offer him slices of ripe peach (skin removed) and he devours them in minutes 🙂

    1. When my niece was 10 months old, I held a peeled fresh peach to her mouth and she devoured the whole thing, one little bite at a time. I thought that was incredible!