Ready to unlock a culinary secret that will take your meals to the next level? Uncover the secret to when to eat microgreens, the tiny greens with colossal flavor! Get ready to revolutionize your taste buds and elevate your dishes to gourmet status!
Picture this: a sprinkle of vibrant microgreens on your favorite salad, sandwich, or pizza. The explosion of flavors that dance on your palate, from zesty to earthy, will leave you craving more. Discover the perfect timing to indulge in these flavor-packed wonders and embark on a taste adventure like never before.
Once cotyledons have fully developed and the first true leaves begin to emerge, it is when to eat microgreens. Fast-growing microgreens like arugula take 8-15 days to harvest. Slow-growing microgreens like alfalfa can take 16-25 days. Eat microgreens immediately after harvest (1-2 days). The shelf-life ranges from 5–10 days under proper storage conditions (washed and refrigerated). Microgreens are best eaten raw.
Imagine the satisfaction of knowing when, exactly, to incorporate microgreens into your meals, ensuring you experience their peak freshness and taste. These miniature powerhouses not only tantalize your taste buds but also provide a nutritional punch packed with essential vitamins and minerals. Embrace the health benefits and deliciousness of unlocking the secret of when to eat microgreens.
Take advantage of this exciting opportunity to transform your meals and delight your senses.
Read this post to uncover the secrets to when to eat microgreens, from harvesting to shelf life, from color to flavor. Get ready to astound your friends and family with aesthetically spectacular and delectably delicious dishes!
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Microgreens are young and tender plants, typically harvested within a few weeks of sprouting. These miniature versions of their fully grown counterparts are bursting with nutrients, making them a valuable addition to any diet. With a range of colors and textures, microgreens offer a delightful visual appeal.
And the US Department of Agriculture generally considers eating microgreens as safe. Microgreens excel when eaten raw and contribute to a healthy and balanced diet.
In my book, Children of the Soil, Chapter Five: Plant Selection, I explain the criteria for selecting your microgreens: Which plants do I grow? Do I want my microgreens to be sweet, nutty, and peppery? What nutrients do I want the most? Do I want to harvest in 6 days, not 9?
Since this is an Easy Guide® book, I compiled five criteria to help you make an even easier decision.
- Microgreens Brassicaceae family
- Microgreens that grow fast
- Microgreens that fit your taste buds
- Microgreens that are high in essential nutrients
- Microgreens that have a good shelf life (in the fridge)
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Timing is everything when it comes to enjoying microgreens at their peak flavor and nutritional value. The moment they reach maturity, before they become fully grown plants, is when they possess optimal taste and texture. Understanding microgreen maturity is vital to unlocking their full potential.
How To Grow Microgreens Indoors (SEED to HARVEST) by Donny Greens
Microgreens Growing Period
Technically, the period of a plant’s life cycle at which the real leaves emerge from the first set of leaves, cotyledons, is when microgreens exist. Your microgreens typically take between 10 and 25 days to become edible. This timeframe depends on whether they are fast-growing microgreens (arugula, red cabbage, kale, and radish) that take 8-15 days to harvest or slow-growing microgreens (alfalfa, carrot, beet, and purslane), which can take 16-25 days.
Sunflower, pea shoots, radishes, kale, and mustard microgreens are the best microgreens to grow for a beginner. Sunflower microgreens offer a mild, nutty flavor and are one of the easiest, fastest-growing crops. There’s typically about a 1 to 3-day window when they’re at the ideal harvest age.
Want to experiment with growing microgreens, but have a small urban dwelling space? Then check out “Microgreens Growing Kits: 2023 Buyer’s Guide,” where I recommend my best five Microgreens Indoor Growing Kits that give you less mess but the same fun.
How do you know when you can eat microgreens?
Microgreens Harvest and 3 Yummy, Easy Ways to Eat Them // Growing Your Indoor Garden #3 by CaliKim29 Garden & Home DIY
Microgreens Harvesting Period
Typically, microgreens range from 11/2–3″ in height when harvested. As a general rule, you should harvest microgreens when the actual leaves emerge through the cotyledon leaves. Wait any longer, and your microgreens will have a bitter aftertaste.
Harvesting microgreens as needed (meaning right before you eat them) is best. Harvesting microgreens at the ideal stage ensures a balance between optimal flavor, nutritional quality, tenderness, and flavor intensity.
Eat microgreens immediately after harvest (1-2 days). But the shelf-life ranges from 5–10 days under proper storage conditions (triple-washed). Microgreens are best eaten raw.
Proper microgreens storage is essential to maintain the freshness and quality of microgreens. But it’s crucial to rinse all microgreens thoroughly before you eat them. Given their small size and high water content, eat them raw. Cooking microgreens is not recommended. Dry them before refrigeration. Storing them in an airtight container or wrapped in damp paper towels can extend their shelf life for up to a week.
Read my in-depth article on storing microgreens, “How Long Can You Store Microgreens at Home?” before putting them in your fridge.
You will learn much knowledge and expertise by experimenting with various microgreens at various growth stages and tasting them to determine the ideal harvest and consumption time. Understand that microgreens are “Children of the Soil,” young plants with powerful health benefits.
Prepare to be amazed by the explosion of flavors microgreens bring to your table. Each variety has a distinct taste profile, offering many sensations. Microgreens can transform a dish into a culinary masterpiece, from zesty and tangy to earthy and peppery. Imagine the fiery kick of radish microgreens, the refreshing notes of basil microgreens, or the robust flavors of mustard microgreens.
Get the “Best Tools for Cooking Microgreens: Our top picks for 2023” and have your family and friends in amazement.
The following are some ways that people might include microgreens in their meals:
- As a garnish for pizzas, flatbreads, soups, and salads
- To give a juice or smoothie more nourishment
- As a side dish to any main course
- As a replacement for lettuce in tacos, burgers, and sandwiches.
- To add taste and color to an omelet or frittata.
The possibilities are endless!
Watch Christopher devour a big bowl of microgreens! He makes eating your microgreens look easy and it can be!
When you’re done watching, check out my article, “What Do Microgreens Taste Like,” and find out what Christopher already knows!
Enhancing Salads and Appetizers
Microgreens have become a culinary staple for elevating salads and appetizers. Their tender leaves and vibrant colors add visual appeal to any dish. Sprinkle microgreens on top of salads to introduce an array of flavors and textures. The peppery notes of arugula microgreens, the delicate sweetness of pea shoot microgreens, or the crispness of radish microgreens can take your salad to new heights.
Get my free book, “Eat Now! 15 Savory Microgreen Pocket Recipes (The Easy Guide to Microgreens Book 1)“, and enjoy some of the best salads on the planet.
Microgreens in Main Dishes
Microgreens have transcended the realm of salads and found their place in main courses. Their compatibility with various cuisines allows for endless culinary possibilities. Microgreens can be the star ingredient when preparing Asian-inspired stir-fries, Mediterranean-infused dishes, or hearty grain bowls. Imagine the aromatic blend of cilantro microgreens in a Thai curry or the vibrant colors of microgreens in a Greek-inspired quinoa bowl. Let your creativity run wild!
Buy my book, “Eat Now! Microgreen Soups: 15 Savory Low Fat Pocket Recipes (The Easy Guide to Microgreens Book 2)“, and savor mouth-watering soups from around the world.
Breakfast and Brunch Delights
Wake up your taste buds with microgreens in breakfast and brunch dishes. They add freshness and vibrant flavors to your morning meals. Use them as garnishes for omelets, avocado toast, or breakfast bowls. Combining microgreens and eggs creates a harmonious balance of textures and tastes. Experience the burst of flavors as you bite into a perfectly cooked omelet adorned with a sprinkle of microgreens.
Sweet Treats and Beverages
Get ready to be surprised by the versatility of microgreens in sweet dishes and beverages. Adding microgreens to your desserts and beverages introduces unique and unexpected flavor combinations. Try infusing microgreens into smoothies, juices, or cocktails for an extra burst of freshness. Create a refreshing watermelon and mint microgreen smoothie, or experiment with a lemonade infused with delicate basil microgreens. Let your taste buds revel in the unexpected and delight in the harmonious flavors.
Pick up my book, “Eat Now! Microgreen Juices: 25 Savory Pocket Recipes (The Easy Guide to Microgreens Book 3)“, and feel the powerful nutrients flowing from juices into your bloodstream.
THE EASY GUIDE® SERIES: MORE TITLES ARE COMING!
Microgreens are more than just tiny plants – they are flavor-packed nutritional powerhouses offering myriad health benefits. Understanding when to eat microgreens to unlock their flavor allows you to optimize your culinary experience and reap the maximum nutritional value from these vibrant greens.
We’ve explored their unique characteristics, great flavor profiles, and the importance of timing in unlocking their full potential. Remember, microgreens not only tantalize your taste buds but also provide a nutrient-packed boost to your diet.
Now it’s your turn to experiment and incorporate microgreens into your culinary creations. Share your experiences and favorite microgreen recipes with others, spreading the joy of these flavorful greens. Don’t be afraid to let your creativity shine as you unlock the culinary potential of microgreens.
INTERESTED IN MICROGREENS?
Join the community
Join more than 50,000 other health-conscious individuals and couples who visit our site and receive weekly emails from us to help them grow more microgreens to live a healthier and longer life.
Can you eat microgreens every day?
Yes, you can have microgreens daily. Eating microgreens has the same health benefits as eating fruits and vegetables daily. A typical adult person should have at least two servings (cups) of fruit and at least three servings (cups) of vegetables each day, based on recommendations by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).
A serving of microgreens is about 25-30 grams, or about one cup. But one cup of arugula microgreens on your salad would be fine. But a cup of wasabi mustard microgreens could cause indigestion.
Read more about the nutritional content of microgreens in my article, “Eat To Meet Your RDA: The 12 Microgreens Vitamins You Need.”
How much microgreens should I eat daily?
As with everything, moderation is essential, and you want to avoid overeating. For example, buckwheat microgreens contain fagopyrin. When ingested in significant doses, fagopyrin can result in swelling, redness, and burning feelings on the skin. The skin becomes more sun-sensitive as a result. To minimize discomfort, you should keep your daily consumption of buckwheat microgreen to less than 50 grams (two daily servings).
Read more about fagopyrin and eating microgreens in my article, “Can Microgreens Make You Sick?”
What is the healthiest microgreen to eat?
Broccoli microgreens are among the most nutritious microgreens. It turns out that broccoli microgreens are high in glucoraphanin, a sulfur-producing glucosinolate, and the precursor to sulforaphane, a cancer-fighting substance. It is the most beneficial compound in broccoli microgreens. The sulforaphane in broccoli microgreens is even more potent than in sprouts or mature broccoli.
In my article, “The Ultimate Guide to Broccoli Microgreens Nutrition Including Nutrition Data, Facts, Info, and Recipes,” I explore the nutritional profile of broccoli microgreens in detail.
- Green, B. “Microgreens: A Complete Step by Step How to Beginners Guide for Growing Microgreens.”, 2021, books.google.com, https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=PJkqEAAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PT5&dq=microgreens+fagopyrin&ots=nS4sZw1G5I&sig=zJvQ30hoLbZZ9k9xdFlt0oz34Kg
- Haslund-Gourley, B, Para, C and …. “Microgreens Grow Kit: A Novel Pilot Study to Improve Nutrition Awareness.” Transformative …, 2022, scholarcommons.towerhealth.org, https://scholarcommons.towerhealth.org/t-med/vol1/iss1/2/
- Poudel, P, Gioia, F Di, Lambert, JD and …. “Zinc biofortification through seed nutri-priming using alternative zinc sources and concentration levels in pea and sunflower microgreens.” Frontiers in Plant …, 2023, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC10150129/
- Sytar, O. “Phenolic acids in the inflorescences of different varieties of buckwheat and their antioxidant activity.” Journal of King Saud University-Science, 2015, Elsevier, https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1018364714000585
- Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2020 -2025. Dec. 2020. https://www.dietaryguidelines.gov/sites/default/files/2020-12/Dietary_Guidelines_for_Americans_2020-2025.pdf
- “When Are Sunflower Microgreens READY for HARVEST? (How to Tell).” DonnyGreens, 23 June 2020, https://donnygreens.com/blogs/microgreens-business/when-are-sunflower-microgreens-ready-to-harvest. Accessed 7 June 2023.
- Zhang, Y, Xiao, Z, Ager, E, Kong, L and Tan, L. “Nutritional quality and health benefits of microgreens, a crop of modern agriculture.” Journal of Future Foods, 2021, Elsevier, https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2772566921000057