“They’re kind of underplayed and underappreciated,” Johnson says. They’re also among the berries highest in antioxidants and fiber, and they have been less cultivated than blueberries, meaning what we eat today is closer to the fruit that once existed in the wild.
Buying and storage tips: Like most berries, blackberries are seasonal in late spring and summer. Store them in the fridge, but not the crisper, and eat within a few days.
Eating tips: Check farmers markets for blackberries’ close kin — the loganberry, boysenberry and marionberry. You can also buy these berries frozen and defrost them in the microwave to add to cereal or atop yogurt.
Their bright red color helps you “eat the rainbow,” an easy way to ensure you’ll consume a rich variety of nutrients.
Buying and storage tips: Because strawberries rank No. 4 on the Environmental Working Group’s Dirty Dozen list of foods high in pesticides, Johnson recommends springing for organics. “Washing berries doesn’t help because the pesticide is in the soil and grows into the berry itself, which also has no protective skin,” she explains. Look for berries that are red all over — no white — as they have more antioxidants and better taste.
Eating tips: Try slicing them onto green salads.