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 F, 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 F.
Vegetables that start with F
Though they look like lima beans, fava beans are less starchy and have a milder taste. Fava beans are creamy, earthy, nutty, slightly sweet, and slightly bitter. Some people say they have a slight cheesy flavor.
A spoonful of fava beans are especially good for the brain. They’re rich in protein, folate and several other vitamins and minerals. Regularly eating fava beans may boost your immune system and enhance antioxidant activity.
Mom always says to eat your peas. And in the South, we take our peas seriously. Technically, field peas are beans and have little in common with green English peas.
Compared to dried peas and beans that must be soaked, fresh peas cook quickly. The flavor and texture of a field pea ranges from delicate and vegetal to earthy and meaty.
Snaps (peas still in the pod) can be eaten raw or gently cooked in hot water with seasoning. Freshly shelled beans from mature pods should be cooked with smoked ham hocks, but can also be frozen and stored for later.
Field peas are high in protein and other nutrients and could be a good addition to a healthy diet. And of course, you can’t have good field peas without a side of hot cornbread!
Fruits that start with F
The fruits start out green and as they mature they tend to take on a reddish-purple color. Cut one open and you’ll find seeds and pulp much like tomatoes. Except, figs are quite sweet and sticky.
Figs can be enjoyed in different ways – such as made into jams, jellies and pies. If picked when perfectly ripe, they can be eaten raw and pair well with cheese.
Fresh figs are full of nutrients, while actually being relatively low in calories. You can buy dried figs, but be warned they will have a higher sugar content.
Varieties of fox grape are grown as table grapes or are used for grape jelly, grape flavoring, grape juice, and kosher wines. The name “fox” was given this grape because compared to the grapes of Europe, those in the New World felt it smelled musky like a wild fox.
The grapes are rather tart and only sweeten slightly after the first frost. Fox, or Frost, grapes can be found in the wild around upper woodland areas. If not picked, they will shrivel on the vine and become raisins for the enjoyment of wildlife.
The Fuji apple originated in Japan as a cross between two American apple varieties—the Red Delicious and old Virginia Ralls Janet apples.
Fuji apples also have a very long shelf life compared to other apples, even without refrigeration. They can be found in most local grocery stores in North America.
Other foods that start with F
If you like hummus, you’ll love falafel! It’s the perfect appetizer and a popular street food. A popular food in the Middle East, falafel is a deep-fried ball typically made from ground chickpeas
Though the ingredients may vary, traditional falafel has a slightly crunchy texture and a rich, savory flavor, consisting of many herbs and spices including coriander, cumin, parsley and mint. It is often served in a pita bread pocket with tahini sauce.
Fennel is a flowering plant in the carrot family. The flavorful, crunchy seeds of the fennel plant are full of health benefits. Including fennel in your diet may improve heart health, reduce inflammation, suppress appetite and even provide menstrual relief.
Crush or grind the fennel seeds before adding them to a recipe or drink to help release more of the oils and flavor. You can also add toasted fennel seeds to dishes to give them a sweet, licorice flavor.
Feta is a Greek curd white cheese made from sheep’s milk or goat’s milk. It is made into blocks and crumbles easily. Its flavor is tangy and salty, ranging from mild to sharp.
Although feta is higher in sodium than other cheeses, it is lower in calories. Feta is a very nutritious cheese, with 100g providing 337 mg of phosphorus. It doesn’t melt like some cheeses, but instead crumbles, making it great as a topping or in a salad.
Do you know your pastas? Angel hair, farfalle, linguini and of course, fettuccine. Fettuccine is a type of pasta often served as an Italian dish with cream sauces, as in the popular dish Fettuccine Alfredo.
No need to be a pasta maker or master of Italian cuisine to enjoy this flat noodle though. You can use fettuccine in any recipe that calls for linguine or spaghetti.
French beans, or French style green beans, are the unripe, young fruit of various cultivars of the common bean. Haricot verts are even younger and more tender, but still the same bean. Harvesting and cooking of the young beans are thought to be even more tender and flavorful.
French beans tend to be a bit skinnier than at its more mature stage. They can be blanched and then sauteed with butter and herbs, or they can be boiled till limp and used in the popular green bean casserole.
A few well cleaned russet potatoes sliced into wedges make for some tasty home fries. Slice the potatoes into quarters and then each quarter into thirds, place in a bowl of ice water and heat some vegetable or canola oil in a fry pot. Drain the wedges and pat dry before immersing in the hot oil. Fry until slightly golden, drain, and then fry again until a darker golden color. Drain and salt to taste.
If you have one, an air fryer will do just as well. You can even place them on a cookie sheet and bake until crisp. There’s no need to peel the potatoes first so long as you’ve cleaned them well. Many of the nutrients are actually in the peel itself.
French Onion Soup
Authentic French onion soup is a type of soup usually based on meat stock and onions, and often served topped with croutons or pieces of cheese-covered bread. You should get a hearty helping of thinly sliced caramelized onions in each spoonful. The stock should be a little thick, not watery.
It’s the perfect soup for a chilly day, but not a great choice for a first date. Most pubs and chain restaurants offer a version in the fall and winter months.The best way to entice your kids to try it is with lots of extra melty cheese.
Tired of frozen waffles? Make one of the easiest brunch dishes ever – French toast. French toast is a delicious dish made by soaking sliced bread in beaten eggs milk, then cooked in a frying pan until done.
Of course there are all sorts of variations such as using different types of breads (brioche is our favorite) and toppings such as powdered sugar, cinnamon, fruits, honey or syrup. And because it’s so easy to make, it’s a great beginners’ recipe for children.
Hop on over and pull up a chair for a feast of frog legs! Frog legs can be best compared to chicken wings in taste and texture (and most people do say it tastes like chicken), but some say they taste similar to fish. Frog legs are rich in protein, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin A, and potassium.
Bullfrogs and leopard frogs are the types most commonly eaten in the United States. But be sure you are eating sustainably harvested or farmed frogs. Demand for legs has driven some species to be classified as endangered.
Fruit salad is one of our family’s favorite side dishes – and one that my kids are always willing to eat! Most fruit salads are made with a base of apple and banana, however, you can use really any of your favorite fruits from kiwi to mango.
Sometimes the fruit can be mixed with a touch of mayonnaise for tang and chopped walnuts or pecans for texture and protein . This is a dish that is so easy to make even the kids can help (though you may want to supervise the slicing and dicing).
If you are using melon, you can add a touch of salt to really bring out the sweet juiciness of the fruit.