Mangoes are in season right now – which means you can get some fantastic deals on the fruit. I recently purchased 25 Kent mangoes from a local co-op and have found they are really a very versatile fruit. Mangoes are packed with nutrients and can take a recipe from plain to exotic.

Here in the U.S. you probably consider the apple or the orange the most popular of fruits, but when you look at consumption across the entire globe, the mango reigns supreme. Mangoes were first grown in India and symbolize love and friendship. If you receive a basket of mangoes from a person in India it means they consider you a friend.

Mangoes come in hundreds of varieties with many different sizes and colors. Mangoes sold in the U.S. are usually one of these six varieties: Kent, Ataulfo, Haden, Francis, Tommy Atkins, or Keitt. Regardless of variety, mangoes are packed with nutrient. In fact, one cup of mango provides 100% of your daily vitamin C, 35% of Vitamin A, and 12% of your daily fiber.

There are various ways to incorporate mangoes into your recipes:

Ham and Mango Sandwiches: Mangoes are very versatile and can be used in some unlikely recipes. Adding mango to a traditional ham and cheese sandwich can give it an entirely new flavor and added boost of vitamins. Simply add a few slices of mango to the sandwich before grilling.

Mango Toast: Toast a slice of bread and top it with sliced mangoes and almond butter. This makes for a tasty and healthy morning starter.

Bacon Wrapped Mango Shrimp: Butterfly shrimp and fill the centers with diced mango. Wrap with shrimp and grill.

Peach and Mango Salsa: Dice one whole Kent mango, one peach, and jalapeno ( de-seeded). Mix together in a bowl with one tablespoon oil. Perfect as a topping to grilled fish or just as a dip for some tortilla chips.

Smoothies: Add a little mango to any smoothie recipe for some added sweetness and a vitamin boost. Remember to drink the smoothie as soon as it is prepared. Nutrients dwindle rapidly once a fruit has been juiced or pureed. Therefore, consume as soon as possible to ensure you are getting the most nutrient possible.

Fruity Mango Roll Ups: Spread cream cheese over a tortilla and place diced kiwi and mangoes on top. Drizzle honey and sprinkle cinnamon over the fruit and roll the tortilla tightly. Cut the tortilla roll in 1/2 inch thick pieces and serve.

Looking for more mango goodness? The National Mango Board website offers hundreds of mango recipes and lots of great tips and tricks for utilizing mangoes in your everyday cooking.

What is your favorite mango recipe?