If apples are the fruit of fall, peaches are the fruit of summer. When mid-summer rolls around, farmers markets everywhere explode with an abundance of this prized stone fruit.

Unlike apples, however, peaches go quickly from under to overripe and you only have a small window of peak peachiness. Fortunately, peaches lend themselves well to a bunch of recipes that allow you to savor their flavor at every stage of their ripeness.

1. Grilled Salad

Photo courtesy of Ang Sarap

If your stone fruits are rock hard, fear not. Half or slice them and throw them on the grill for an easy way to soften them while drawing out their sweetness. Toss them in a salad for an original spin on a summer staple.

2. Salsa


Photo by Sarah Strohl

This recipe would be awesome no matter how your peaches are. But if your peaches are still too firm, this is a great application. The crisp texture and slight sweetness pairs well with the heat from the jalapeños and the acid from the lime.

3. Gazpacho 


Photo courtesy of flickr.com user Jeremy Bronson

Once again, this recipe is accepting of all peaches. If you like a savory soup, use underripe peaches. If you like a sweeter soup, go for the mushiest you can find. This recipe is refreshing, light and exactly what you need this summer.

4. Cobbler


Photo courtesy of flickr.com user Ralph Daily

This is the king of peach recipes. You may be able to get away with some underripe peaches, but save this for the perfectly ripe variety. The slight saltiness of the batter goes so well with the sweet and soft peaches. Remember to always serve with a scoop of your favorite vanilla ice cream.

5. Popsicle


Photo courtesy of flickr.com user Annie

When peaches are in season, you can’t help but buy as many as you can carry home. But once they ripen, it’s a race to eat them all. Keep that fresh peach taste by making popsicles. They’ll keep all summer for your peach addiction.

6. Mojito

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Mojitos are a fantastic summer drink. But after a couple, they can start to taste a little meh. Kick the originality up a notch with some peach flavor. The sweet fruitiness and the herbaceous mint makes for a mean cocktail.

7. Infused Vinegar

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A peach that’s a little too soft can be put to great use as a flavor in vinegars. It’s the perfect thing for a salad, slaw, pickle or gift.

8. Bellini

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Once you have some soft peaches, put them in a blender to make a peach puree. You can use the puree for a lot, but the best and classiest way to eat your peach is in the infamous bellini. It’s a drink for the summer when you need a break your plain margaritas.

9. BBQ Sauce

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When your peaches are way past their prime, turn them into your new favorite sauce for grilling. The flesh is as smooth as butter and the sweetness pairs perfectly with the smokiness of grilled meats. Plus it will keep a while so you never have to waste another peach again.