How to choose the right fruit and vegetables

No matter how much you smell, feel or scrutinize the fruits and vegetables in the stalls, you are never sure of your choice! So to stop this from turning into a headache, follow the advice of experts from the Union nationale des syndicats de détaillants en fruits, légumes et en primeurs (UNFD). All the tips you need to select the right fruits and vegetables.


Known as a powerful antibacterial, garlic is a source of fibre and rich in vitamins C, B6 and B9. It is also a source of trace elements important for cells (phosphorus, potassium...).

Tips :

To choose it well, prefer the well chubbed, swollen, rather heavy garlic heads in your hand. Lightly squeeze the cloves (pods) to check their firmness and make sure they do not have small green germs.

Tasty and refreshing, pineapple is above all a good source of vitamins (C, A, E). Its energy intake is moderate: 52 kcal/100 g. It is also well supplied with fibre.

Tips :

Don't be fooled by its colour, a pineapple can have a slightly green bark but be ripe (bottle pineapple, for example). If the pineapple leaves do not resist when you try to detach them, it is because it has reached full maturity.


Although the energy intake of artichokes is moderate (40 kcal/100 g), their intake of vitamins (B, C) and minerals is very interesting (potassium, phosphorus, calcium, magnesium).

Tips :

Choose an artichoke that is uniform in colour (green or purple), spotless, heavy, firm and with brittle leaves. Dehydrated and stained leaves indicate that it is not fresh.


An excellent diuretic, asparagus provides only 25 kcal/100 g while it provides a wide range of minerals (potassium, phosphorus, magnesium...).

Tips :

Choose a fresh, straight asparagus with a tightly closed bud, a slightly shiny heel and an undamaged and brittle upper.


Eggplant is one of the lowest calorie fresh vegetables (18 kcal/100 g). And in addition to being very digestible (if you add little fat), it provides a good range of minerals, vitamins and fibre.

Tips :

A good eggplant will be firm, with smooth, shiny skin and no brown spots. Thus, it will not contain too many seeds, bitter. It should have a pretty purple colour, neither too light nor too dark.


Often criticized for its energetic power (138 kcal per 100 g), avocado is suitable for athletes and growing children, due to its high vitamin content (B9, C, E).

Tips :

Your new product offers two varieties: Hass (hard skin, warty, green with a purple tendency) and Fuerte (thin and smooth skin, matte green). Squeeze the skin to assess its maturity. If you want to eat it a few days after purchase, choose a harder one, it will continue to mature at home.


It is the ideal fruit for sports because of its excellent carbohydrate content and good mineral concentration (potassium, magnesium). Energy value/100g : 90kcal.

Tips :

When it is green, the banana is not ripe, when it turns brown, you have to eat it quickly! Bananas are afraid of the cold and cannot tolerate being exposed to temperatures below 12°C. Its maturation is then interrupted, and the colour of its skin quickly turns brown. Avoid the refrigerator.


Although caloric for a vegetable (40 kcal/100 g), it would be a shame to do without it because it contains a sip of minerals and trace elements, fibres and vitamins (B9, C).

Tips :

Choose it firm, with a bark that is not too dry, when it is raw. Cooked, its skin must be smooth, without black spots or cracks. And for a change, try an old variety, the elongated crapaudine.


Broccoli is exceptionally rich in vitamins (A, B5, B9, C). Another important asset is that broccoli is moderately energetic (25 kcal/100 g), rich in fibre and minerals.

Tips :

Choose a green broccoli. Its flowers bloom and turn yellow at room temperature. Keep (3 to 4 days) in the vegetable bin, wrapped in the original packaging.


Carrot is low in energy (33 kcal/100 g) and contains many vitamins, including a high content of provitamin A, minerals (potassium) and fibre.

Tips :

Choose rather firm carrots. The conservation carrots can be kept for one week in the vegetable bin while the more fragile primeur carrots can only be kept for two days in the same place.


Rich in water and potassium (250 mg/100 g), cherries have diuretic properties and their fibres stimulate intestinal functioning.

Tips :

Store them for one day in a fruit basket away from heat, or no more than two days in the refrigerator crisper. Take them out at least 20 minutes before eating them.


Cucumber is one of the lowest calorie vegetables with 10 kcal/100 g. Remineralizing and very thirst-quenching (96% water), it has all the vitamins, especially vitamin B9.

Tips :

Prefer a rather firm cucumber. Whole, it can be stored easily for 5 days in the crisper. Once started, it is more fragile and should be filmed, making sure to eat it quickly before it becomes soft.


The caloric intake of courgette is very low (15 kcal/100 g). An excellent source of soft but effective transit fibre, it is very well tolerated by the fragile intestines.

Tips :

A good courgette will be smooth, heavy, firm and regular in colour (green or yellow), the cut of the stem must be fresh, white and not wrinkled. Choose thinner, softer and crisper courgettes.

Cep mushroom

Cep is one of the lightest plants (15 kcal/100 g). It is also very well provided with proteins, vitamins (E, K) and contains a significant amount of minerals.

Tips :

Choose a clean, spotless, young and above all firm mushroom from head to toe. The hat welded to its foot and a yellow or green foam under the hat ensure freshness.

Celery branch

Long used as a medicinal plant, stick celery is rich in mineral salts (potassium, calcium and iron), trace elements and fibres. It is low in energy (15kcal/100g).

Tips :

The celery branch has a rather heavy stalk. Its foliage is a blond to dark green green. Its ribs are white, fleshy, shiny and brittle when fresh.

Fresh fig

Fig is not as high in calories as we tend to think: fresh, it provides 57 kcal/100 g. It is a fruit very rich in minerals, a good source of trace elements and contains an interesting amount of B vitamins.

Tips :

Violaceous, whitish or green, the maturity of the fig is controlled by the suppleness of its flesh. Healthy and fleshy, with a firm tail, it is perfectly ripe, tender, soft and delicious.


Strawberry is an excellent source of vitamin C. Low in sugars, its caloric intake is low (35 kcal/100 g) while its minerals are diversified and balanced.

Tips :

Buy blackberries (red or orange fruits depending on the variety), spotless, bright, firm and with a bright green collar and stalk.


Raspberry is one of the lowest calorie fruits (38 kcal/100 g). Ideal for a light meal end, it is, due to its low acidity and mineral density, a dessert to be preferred.

Tips :

Store raspberries in their packaging for no more than two or three days. Very fragile, their freshness is ephemeral, even in the vegetable compartment of the refrigerator. Avoid washing that softens the fruit.


A low-energy fruit (30 to 50 kcal per 100g), melon provides significant amounts of vitamins C and B9, fibre and especially provitamin A (carotene).

Tips :

Choose it flavoured and heavy, a sign that it is full of sugar. If the stalk is no longer there or if it is cracked, the melon is likely to be ripe.


Generally consumed in small quantities, onions have many nutritional benefits. Rich in vitamin C, it contains many minerals and trace elements.

Tips :

In spring and summer, choose fresh onions. In bundles, the green leaves are a sign of freshness. Surrender to the temptation of a Rosé de Roscoff or Doux des Cévennes onion.


With a low energy value (30kcal per 100g), watermelon or watermelon is a source of vitamin C, it hydrates and provides provitamin A (carotene). Watermelon has a smooth bark, uniform green or marbled and red or yellow flesh.

Tips :

Choose a heavy fruit with a waxy and shiny appearance. Its juicy and crunchy flesh will have a sweet taste.

Green peas

Peas are more energetic than the average vegetable (80 kcal/100 g). Rich in fibre, however, it is an excellent source of vitamins (A, B, C, E) and minerals.

Tips :

Keep for a few days, unshelled, in a plastic bag, in the vegetable bin. Sweet peas, which are softer, can be stored for no more than 24 hours.


A diuretic food with a low energy value, leek is a biennial vegetable plant with a low caloric intake (27 kcal/100 g) and a high content of vitamins and minerals.

Tips :

Remove the roots and base and split from the base to the leaves and all the way up. Pass under water, spreading the leaves apart to remove any traces of soil. Cut into pieces.


The pepper is well provided with fibre (2 g/100 g) and a low energy intake (20 kcal/100 g). It is the champion of vitamin C content, behind parsley and a good source of carotene.

Tips :

Choose firm, smooth, shiny peppers with no spots or bruises. For the pleasure of the eyes, buy different colours because it does not affect freshness.

Early potatoes

Starchy, rich in complex carbohydrates and proteins, which gives it an energy value of 85Kcal, potatoes are a source of vitamin C and potassium.

Tips :

Choose a tuber according to use, firm, uniform in colour, without greenish spots or germs. Varieties are defined by the texture of their flesh (tender, floury, firm or melting).


With only 40 kcal per 100 g, fishing has a moderate energy intake. Very digestible, its contribution of vitamins and minerals is interesting.

Tips :

White, orange, yellow or vine, peaches must be ripe to perfection. To make no mistake, the fruit must be supple and have a fragrant smell. Also test the flat peach.


As a root vegetable, radishes are rich in water, minerals and trace elements. Rich in sulphur giving it a spicy side, it stimulates appetite and digestion and provides 15 kcal/100 g.

Tips :

Choose green tops, they show the freshness of the product. Whether pink, red, white or black, choose radishes of smaller sizes, firm, without stains or cracks.


Rich in minerals and trace elements and with a low caloric intake (15 kcal/100 g), tomatoes promote the elimination of toxins. It is also a source of vitamins A, C and E.

Tips :

A good tomato should be red and firm. To allow them to keep all their flavour and continue to ripen, tomatoes should be stored at room temperature in a basket or tray.

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