But that’s not the only way to eat a peach. In addition to enjoying them raw and cooked in desserts, fresh peaches can be roasted, grilled, marinated and even frozen for a burst of summer sunshine in the dead of winter.
Eating peaches is also a tastier way to get essential vitamins and nutrients into your body than by swallowing a pill. According to Rachael Hartley, dietitian and author of “Soft Nutrition: A No-Diet Approach to Healthy Eating,” peaches are high in vitamins A and C and excellent for digestion, containing prebiotic fiber that feeds beneficial gut bacteria.
“They also contain potassium, which can help maintain healthy blood pressure, as well as antioxidants, especially in and near the skin of a fresh peach,” she said.
However, if you’re not a fan of the fuzzy texture of peaches, you can always substitute the nectarines for one of the recipe ideas here and enjoy the same nutritional benefits. Or try other members of the stone fruit family, such as plums, pluots (a hybrid cross between a plum and an apricot), and apricots.
In fact, you could eat peaches all day and not have the same dish twice. Here’s how to maximize the perfection of your catch with recipe ideas for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert, of course.
Peaches for breakfast
Overnight oats are a trend that’s not going to go away anytime soon, and summer is a great time to embrace this relaxing breakfast dish. Add sliced fresh peaches to a mason jar with oats, milk, and spices, and you’ve got a peach cobbler-inspired treat waiting for you in the morning.
If pre-made breakfasts aren’t for you, make a peach smoothie. This easily adaptable recipe can be made vegan with your choice of plant-based yogurt and milk, or any combination of dairy that’s right for you.
For the most decadent brunch, Peach-Stuffed French Toast made with Fresh Peach Quick Bread is an over-the-top meal that will have you retreating to the hammock for the rest of the weekend. If you don’t plan on making quick homemade bread, replace it with challah or soft Italian bread.
Grill for lunch and dinner
Turn on the grill and heat your peaches a bit to turn them into a gently charred side dish for a number of dishes.
To grill peaches, preheat a gas or charcoal grill over medium heat. Cut and pit the peaches, then brush the cut halves with olive oil or vegetable oil. Place cut side down and cook, uncovered, for 4 to 5 minutes, until grill marks appear and the peaches easily peel off the grill grates. Gently flip and cook for a few more minutes until the skin is lightly charred.
Grilled peaches become the star of the show in a large salad, like this summer quinoa, peach and vegetable salad that works as a main course. Or simply drizzle them with balsamic vinegar and quality olive oil with a pinch of flaky sea salt and serve as a fruit salad.
Use sliced grilled peaches as a flatbread garnish with a creamy cheese like burrata or ricotta, a handful of fresh greens like arugula, and an optional serving of protein like grilled steak or shrimp. Or slip a few slices into a grilled cheese sandwich or burger for a sweet and savory combination.
Dice the grilled peaches and turn them into a fresh salsa ready to serve in fish tacos or as a garnish for lighter meals like grilled fish, chicken breast or tenderloin or pork chops.
An outdoor happy hour is always happier with a special cocktail to sip and a dining board to snack on. Pickled peaches are a tangy addition to soft cheeses like fresh goat cheese, brie or taleggio, which in turn taste fantastic with cold cuts like prosciutto and speck.
Accompany your cheese and charcuterie with a peach drink. Peach lemonade can be served on its own or with vodka or rum. Peach margaritas are a better-made blender drink than you might get with a blend. And a peach and bourbon smash will be a new favorite for those who love mint juleps.
No summer potluck table would be complete without a peach dessert, whether it’s a traditional peach pie, a crispy sprinkled with streusel, or a cobbler topped with cookies.
But do you know what makes one of these desserts even more delicious? Top them with a scoop of no-churn peach ice cream or a Philadelphia peach ice cream that doesn’t require you to bake custard on the stovetop.
And if you can’t decide which peach dessert you’re in the mood for the most, grab your cake – and your cobbler – and eat that too while enjoying a cast iron skillet peach cobbler cake.
Save some for later
Frozen bagged peaches are always an option year round, but if you have plenty of peaches on hand in late summer, you can freeze your own stash of pies, smoothies, and cobblers during the winter months. colder.
“Freezing doesn’t significantly damage the nutrients in the peaches, and it’s a great option for preserving the peaches if you take a little too much and they start to deteriorate,” Hartley said.
To freeze fresh peaches, you can blanch them in boiling water to remove the skin if you want, or leave the skin on. Core and slice, then arrange the peach slices in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Freeze until hard, then transfer to a sealable bag for long term storage.
Casey barber is a food writer, illustrator and photographer; the author of “Pierogi Love: New Takes on an Old-World Comfort Food” and “Classic Snacks Made from Scratch: 70 Homemade Versions of Your Favorite Branded Treats”; and editor of the site Good. Food. Stories.