Summer Grilling Takes a Turn with Fruits and Vegetables

Shoppers take healthy eating habits to grilling season

LOS ALAMITOS, CA (May 2015) — While hot dogs and burgers have always been summer’s favorite grilling items, this year shoppers will look for a variety of fruits and vegetables beyond onions and peppers to grill.

Holidays are no longer a “cheat” day for shoppers, but opportunities for them to try healthy food. Recent studies show that 87 percent of American households have outdoor barbecues, and they believe grilling more often is a healthier way to prepare meals. Shorter cooking time on the grill ensures that much of the nutritional content is retained in vegetables when cooked.

“We find a significant change in American barbecue habits. Shoppers are grilling more vegetables in the summer, and now they are starting to grill more fruits as well,” said Karen Caplan, President and CEO of Frieda’s Specialty Produce. “One of the food trends this year is making vegetables the main course, and summer grilling season sets the perfect stage for that.”

Some exciting vegetables for grilling are Shishito Peppers, Baby Bok Choy, Belgian Endive, Eggplant, Fava Beans, Fingerling and Baby Potatoes, Artichokes, and Colored Cauliflowers for cauliflower “steaks.” Starfruit and Zululand Queen Baby Pineapples are also great lightly caramelized.

“While grilling season officially kicks off during Memorial Day weekend (May 25), continues with Father’s Day (June 21), Fourth of July weekend, and concludes on Labor Day weekend (September 7), we are seeing retailers starting to promote grilling certain parts of the country,” added Caplan.

About Frieda’s Inc.

With over 50 years of fresh produce innovation, Frieda’s Specialty Produce continues to change the way America eats fruits and vegetables. Founded in 1962 by Frieda Caplan, Frieda’s was the first wholesale produce company in the U.S. to be founded, owned, and operated by a woman, and is still a family- and women-owned business today. Frieda’s has introduced more than 200 specialty items to U.S. produce departments, including Kiwifruit, Spaghetti Squash, Habanero Peppers, Sunchokes®, Stokes Purple® Sweet Potatoes, Sangria and Fiore Viola Artichokes, and many more. Frieda’s featured program is “Eat One Fruit a Day That Scares You,” which encourages everyone to #FearNoFruit. Connect with Frieda’s on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest, and at