This comparative study investigated variations in food patterns across the seasons in rural Pakistan through assessing the changes in food variety, dietary diversity and calorie intake. It analyzed the situation using the primary information of 97 and 114 households surveyed in summer and winter respectively. Findings revealed a significant difference of households' food variety, dietary diversity and calorie intake across the seasons. In the winter, households' food basket was more diverse, showing 30%, 13%, and 8% rise in food variety, dietary diversity, and caloric intake, respectively, due mainly to the changes in food choices in winter. Rural households preferred to consume items from nutritious food groups (i.e., dried fruits and nuts, oilseeds, and locally preserved foods) during the severe cold weather. However, they did not substitute significantly the items from basic food groups (i.e., cereals, vegetables and legumes, tubers, and dairy products), with those belonging to nutritious groups. Based on findings, it is concluded that food variety, dietary diversity and calorie intake fluctuate across the seasons, therefore surveys of dietary patterns and calorie intake in one particular season may not be reliable, and food security status of households may not be generalized on the basis of one season survey. © 2014 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.