How come people don’t cook with nectarines the way they do with peaches? Nectarines are sweet and delicious, often better than peaches, but you never see nectarine pies, cobblers or other desserts.
According to Susan Krumm, a nutrition educator for K-State Research and Extension in Douglas County, nectarines can be used in the same way as peaches, and may be considered as substitutes for peaches. Genetically, the only difference between peaches and nectarines is the lack of fuzz on the nectarine skin. Usually, nectarines are smaller than peaches and have more red color on the surface, and more aroma.
Popular uses for peaches and nectarines include eating them fresh, sugared or with cream.
Krumm said they are also used in ice cream, pies, cobbler and shortcake. In addition, peaches and nectarines are used for jam, jelly, preserves and mixed fruit desserts.
For quick nibbles, Krumm suggests making a salsa by mixing nectarine chunks with cilantro, mango and tomatoes. Eat with baked tortilla chips or toasted pita bread. Or, serve a fresh, fruity beverage by blending nectarine chunks with milk, orange juice, honey, almond extract and ice cubes.
Fresh peaches provide respectable amounts of the antioxidant vitamins A and C in addition to potassium and fiber. Nectarines provide twice the vitamin A, slightly more vitamin C and much more potassium than peaches.