Fresh Fig Spread

Oh boy do I love figs, always have.  Fig Newtons (now called simply Newtons) in my lunch box as a kid was a favorite. I don’t think I encountered a fresh fig until I was in my mid-20s.  But, no surprise, I liked them right away.  Figs are native to the Middle East and western Asia and they have been cultivated since ancient times.  There is some evidence to suggest that figs were actually being cultivated over 10,000 years ago.  Due to figs’ popularity across cultures, they are now widely grown throughout the world.

Although figs come from trees and are commonly referred to as fruit, they are not.  Figs are actually the infructescence of the tree, known as an “accessory fruit  or false fruit“–just like apples, strawberries, quinces, pineapples, and watermelons.  Who knew?!?!

Fresh figs are delicate and highly perishable and therefore do not withstand shipping.  This is why one most commonly sees dried figs in areas where they are not grown.  Figs are one of the sweetest “fruits” out there and provide an assortment of nutritional and health benefits.  They are loaded with calcium, potassium, and fiber–and I think fresh ones are particularly tasty, and they are available in abundance in the Fall months.

fig spread

There are many things one can do with fresh figs other than place them in salads.  This is an easy recipe for a quick fig spread that is absolutely delicious, especially when paired with cheese.  Fig spread is perfect on its own on a great piece of bread.  But it also makes a wonderful addition to any cheese board, if you are entertaining.  This recipe is easy to make and benefits from being made ahead of time and refrigerated, so it can be set.

Only a few simple ingredients are required to make this fig spread; I use a bit of vanilla as a flavor enhancer.  I also added some lovely ground bourbon vanilla beans (a favorite of mine) to help make the fig flavor pop even more.  This is a specialty item but, for the record, I did not pay $22 for it as the link suggests–look around, you hopefully can find it (or something similar) in a gourmet store near you for less. You can also easily omit these beans if you don’t want to try to locate them; just increase the vanilla extract slightly if doing so.

Added to a charcuterie board, swirled into overnight oats, or straight up on toast there is no wrong way to enjoy this lovely spread.

About the Author

Andrea Potischman

I am a professionally trained NYC chef turned CA mom and food blogger. I post about real food, with doable ingredient lists that are family friendly.

8 thoughts on "Fresh Fig Spread"

  1. Avatar photo Sara says:

    This recipe is a delight! So easy and delicious! I divide the recipe into 4 portions and freeze it-it freezes well. I cut a baguette into 1/4 ” slices and bake for a few minutes then warm the fig spread which I spoon over goat cheese and serve! What a hit! Everyone loves it!

    1. Love it. Thank you for sharing your experience making my recipe, this is what it’s all about!

  2. Avatar photo Gloria Taylor says:

    This is so good. Instead of the ground vanilla beans I used cardamom. Thank you for the recipe.

    1. Love hearing this. Thank you Gloria for trying my recipe and taking the tine to comment, do appreciate that!

  3. Avatar photo John says:

    Just made this tonight. So simple and so, so good. Going to freeze some for the holidays. Hoping it out comes back out as good as it went in. Thank you so much for this recipe.

    1. Hi John- Thank you for your lovely message, I am thrilled you liked my fig spread recipe, it is a favorite of mine and so easy! Freezing it should not be a problem at all. I just converted that recipe to support star review. If you are willing, please rate it on the recipe page as well. Thanks again for reaching out. Be well and happy cooking! Andrea

  4. Avatar photo Vincent Dyer says:

    Hello , abundance , of figs here . Going to make your Fig spread will let you know the result ..Cheers .. Vincent….

    1. Wonderful to hear this. Do lmk how it goes. And thanks so much for reaching out.

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