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Microgreens May Be Your Kitchen’s New Best Friend

Microgreens May Be Your Kitchen’s New Best Friend

Image source: flickr.com/photos/jasonsandeman

Microgreens, or the seedlings of herbs and vegetables, have concentrated flavors and colors and are rich in vitamins and phytochemicals.

One study that examined 25 varieties of commonly found microgreens concluded that a range of nutritive levles could be found in them.

Researchers discovered that the cotyledon leaves of the microgreens contain amplified amounts of nutrients, more than the nutritional value of fully grown leaves of the identical, fully grown plant. Because they are not fully developed, the initial leaf contains highly concentrated nutrients.

Microgreens May Be Your Kitchen’s New Best Friend

Image source: pubs.acs.org

Not to be confused with sprouts, microgreens can be fairly easily grown without much care or required space and can be grown all year long. They do need light for growth, but a windowsill will normally provide optimal conditions as long as it receives a little sunlight at some point in the day.

Planted in shallow containers that have adequate drainage, many herbs and vegetables can be grown this way. Providing correct humidity and moisture levels is necessary, and misting with water is recommended. After a couple of weeks the tops of the leaves can be snipped off and eaten, used in recipes and as garnishes.

Whole Lifestyle Nutrition has suggestions and an easy step by step guide for growing microgreens.

Though microgreens can be grown in a windowsill, they also do well on a countertop or table garden, and small-scale greenhouses can help absorb sunlight and provide adequate humidity. This instructable shows how to make a countertop greenhouse for around $20.00 U.S.

If you have a little hands-on learner that likes a bit of observation and experimentation, cultivate a child-sized garden. Getting kids involved with planting mircrogreens is a great way to foster appreciation of how plants start out and how to grow healthy options.

Annie’s Homegrown has gardening starter instructions for children, including how to start and care for a windowsill garden.

The Organic Authority has over 100 herbs, edible flowers and vegetables that can be grown in a kitchen garden.

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