When you live with picky eaters – whether they are your children, your spouse, or maybe even yourself – you have to get creative with how you introduce different foods into your meals. Eating a variety of foods can be fun when you turn it into a game. We decided to try a new food from A to Z, and created this list of foods to have options to choose from. Here is our list of foods that start with D, including fruits, vegetables, and other fun things to eat!
Why eat foods from every letter of the alphabet?
When you step outside of your food comfort zone, you have the opportunity to discover a new food that you never knew you could enjoy. There are so many foods that we haven’t tried, for various reasons – because our parents never cooked them, they weren’t available in our area, they are popular foods in different cultures, or just because we didn’t know they existed!
Trying different foods, especially fruits and vegetables, can provide our bodies with a variety of nutrients that we wouldn’t normally have. It can also get us out of the “what’s for dinner” rut when we get bored of eating the same old things over and over again.
These food lists are also great when teaching the alphabet, or when looking for a fun food for show and tell day at school!
If you’re looking for a little flavor in the kitchen, or a way to spice up your life, try one – or all! – of these foods that start with the letter D.
Vegetables that start with D
Yes, dandelion greens are edible – but don’t just pull the weeds from your yard to eat without a little knowledge. Dandelion greens have been used as a homeopathic remedy for centuries. Technically an herb, these green leaves are full of iron, calcium and vitamins. They’ve also been used as diuretics. The entire dandelion plant is edible; however the FDA still considers it a weed, so you’re not likely to find it at the local grocery store.
Some health food stores do have them and if you must pick them, make sure they haven’t been sprayed with pesticides, herbicides or fertilizers. They can be bitter, so cook them like you would most greens.
There’s nothing like biting into a crispy, chilled dill pickle on a hot day, preferably with a sub sandwich or big burger. Dill pickles aren’t just a strong-tasting snack though. They have nutritional value too! You can actually get about 20% of your recommended daily value of vitamin K if you eat a whole pickle.
Of course there are several types of dill pickles and most grocery stores have them. But if you have a green thumb, you can also make your own pickles. You’ll need a variety of pickling spices and a little canning know-how.
Fruits that start with D
You may have to search a bit to find these little purple treasures. Damson plums are fantastic in jams, jellies and desserts. It’s not recommended to eat damson plums straight from the tree though! They are pretty tart when raw, so it’s best to cook them first (and maybe add a little sweetener).
Stewed damson plums can be eaten at all times of the day. Enjoy them as part of your breakfast alongside a warm cereal or waffles.
From the palm family, dates go back to Mesopotamia. You can usually find them in your local grocery store and are easy to add to your diet. These nutrient dense bombs have multiple health benefits from fiber to fighting disease. Some say dates can even promote natural labor.
They can be used as a natural sweetener (they are typically the main sweetener in Larabars) or chopped and used in salads or in smoothies. They’re great in overnight oatmeal, sautéed in savory dishes or used in baked goods and puddings. Stay away from dried dates unless organic, as they can contain harmful preservatives.
The dragon fruit is a tropical fruit that’s originally from Southern Mexico and Central and South America. It’s known for its vibrant red skin (sometimes called a strawberry pear in Southeast Asia) and sweet flavor, with a seed-speckled pulp. It’s the slightly sweet fruit of several different cactus species indigenous to the Americas and tastes like a mix of kiwi and pear.
A good reason to eat dragon fruit; it’s loaded with antioxidants and vitamins. Plus, it just looks cool. Select a ripe fruit, peel and chow down. Or you can mix the scooped fruit into a fruit salad or use it in a smoothie with other healthy foods for a nutritious snack.
Other foods that start with D
Put down the donut hole and take a trip to Europe! A Danish pastry, sometimes shortened to just Danish, is a sweet puff pastry made from flour, yeast, milk, eggs, and lots of butter.
The texture of this sweet pastry is similar to a croissant, but Danish pastries are more dessert-like. Like croissants, typical Danish pastry dough is rolled out thinly, then folded with a layer of butter to form multiple layers.
Enjoy the occasional Danish with a glass of orange juice for a sweet morning treat.
You can find various brands of dark chocolate at different percentages of cacao in most stores. The higher percentage of cacao, the more bitter the taste.
Dark chocolate has nutritional benefits, such as the ability to increase “good” HDL cholesterol, which is known to help lower your risk of heart attack and stroke.
Dark chocolate contains healthy fats and antioxidants that can increase the levels of the hormones serotonin and dopamine in your brain, which impacts your mood.
Eat it like any chocolate bar or melted with fondue, mixed with nuts, or in your favorite brownie batter.
Devil’s Food Cake
A lustful dessert, there’s something heavenly about devils food cake. In the 18th century, the term “deviled” was used to reference food that was described as dark, rich, spicy or chocolatey. A chocolate cake as rich as this one was deemed almost “sinful” and therefore, it earned the name Devil’s Food.
You can make this fluffy, chocolatey sponge cake using a boxed mix from Betty, or you can find old-school recipes online to bake from scratch. You can make it in a layer cake, sheet cake, cupcakes or even cake pops!
Traditional devil’s food cake icing is a sweet and sticky meringue buttercream icing. It’s to die for!
A savory, flavorful package, dim sum is a staple in many Asian restaurants. Dim sum dates back centuries and is mostly handmade. You can find frozen dim sum in stores, but it probably doesn’t taste as good as handmade.
Translated, dim sum literally means “so close to the heart” in Cantonese. Essentially large hors d’oeuvres, a typical dim sum meal includes several kinds of steamed buns like char siu bao (roast pork buns), deep fried dumplings like hahm sui gohk (glutinous rice dumplings), rice noodle rolls like ngau cheung (beef noodle rolls) and desserts like djeen dui (fried sesame balls).
Dulce De Leche
Dulce de leche is a confection from Latin America prepared by slowly heating sugar and milk over a period of several hours. In English, we know it as caramelized milk.
You can use dulce de leche in many ways from coffee to cake to ice cream. Don’t confuse it with caramel; there are more milk enzymes involved in dulce de leche.
Which “D” food is your favorite?
Do you have a favorite food that starts with D that isn’t on our list? Or even a favorite recipe? We’d love to hear about it, so leave us a comment below!