Microgreens are a fun and interesting way to get the nutrients you need on a daily basis into your meals. However, as with any food, they don’t last forever. So how long can your microgreens stick around before they spoil? Keeping them in the fridge will help, but still, you should eat your microgreens fast.
How long exactly do microgreens last in the fridge? Well, it depends on which microgreens we are talking about, but they average out to around 10-12 days. Some varieties like pea tendrils and sunflower can last a few weeks, while basil and similarly delicate microgreens will last for only a few days. It’s important to know your microgreens and when they’ll spoil in order to plan ahead for your meals.
What is a microgreen?
Microgreens are a relatively new phenomenon in cooking and nutrition, so it’s understandable that one might need a refresher on what they actually are. To put it simply, microgreens are miniature versions of other herbs and vegetables.
More specifically, microgreens are herbs and vegetables that are harvested very quickly into their growth process, usually while they’re only a couple of centimeters in height. They are rich in scent and flavor, making them great for cooking, and they also provide a number of crucial nutrients and vitamins, often even more than their fully grown vegetable counterparts.
Do microgreens last longer or shorter than normal vegetables?
Much like vegetables, microgreens have a rather short shelf life. But which has the shorter shelf lives? Well, vegetables and microgreens both have a ton of variance in how long it takes specific varieties to spoil, so it’s rather hard to say.
On average, vegetables take 14 or so days to spoil. Some last a long time, such as garlic, which can be stored for up to a month at room temperature. Some are more delicate, like cucumbers, and last about a week in the fridge.
Microgreens usually spoil in around 10 days. Much like vegetables, they vary, with basil and other delicate herbs spoiling in around 5 days, and pea shoots and other heartier microgreens taking a couple of weeks to go bad. Still, on average, microgreens spoil in a shorter period of time than vegetables.
How long does basil last in the fridge?
One of the most delicate microgreens, basil spoils in a very short period of time. Usually, it only takes around 3-5 days for basil microgreens to go bad, even in your refrigerator. This shelf life can be elongated with proper harvesting and storage, but it will never really get to more than a week.
When harvesting basil, make sure you have a meal in mind to use it within the next couple of days so you can get the best out of it!
How long do scallions last in the fridge?
Scallions are quite a hearty microgreen and will last a while in your fridge. These greens can last up to a full two weeks in your fridge, especially if they are harvested and stored properly. This is very helpful because it gives you flexibility in scheduling and planning meals that more fragile microgreens that spoil quickly do not give.
How long do arugula microgreens last in the fridge?
Arugula microgreens are more on the hearty side than they are on the delicate, so they too last a little while. Usually averaging out to around 10 days, you can take some time to decide what to do with your arugula microgreens.
How long do pea tendrils last in the fridge?
Pea tendrils are another quite hearty microgreen, managing to last around two weeks in the fridge if they are stored properly. Also known as pea shoots, pea tendrils are the leaves, stems, and vines of a young pea plant, and make for great microgreens.
They last long and pack a nutritional punch, so they are one of the best microgreens to keep around the house just to use whenever you think your meal needs that extra healthy kick.
Does temperature affect the shelf life of microgreens?
Temperature certainly affects the shelf life of microgreens, as they last far longer in the fridge than they do sitting out on the counter or hidden away in a cabinet.
Turns out, it affects microgreens even more than it affects most foods that can spoil. Fridges with a temperature of 39 degrees Fahrenheit can keep some microgreens fresh for 14-21 days. However, if the fridge is turned up by just 10 or so degrees, the shelf life of the microgreens is reduced by about half.
Not only should you make sure your microgreens are refrigerated, but that your fridge is at the right temperature to ensure the long shelf life of your microgreens as well!
Does packaging affect the shelf life of microgreens?
Packaging is also important in determining how long your microgreens will last. If you’re going to eat them within a day or so, storing them in glass bowls or wrapped in a damp paper towel is fine. However, if you mean to save them for more than a couple of days, they should be stored in an airtight container such as Tupperware.
This will keep them fresh for longer and allow you some flexibility in when you want to prepare them.
Does how they’re harvested affect the shelf life of microgreens?
Believe it or not, the method in which your microgreens were harvested can also affect how long they’ll last in your fridge. This isn’t a problem if your microgreens are store-bought, but if they aren’t, then you should know how to harvest them properly!
Use a sharp knife. A dull knife will do more damage to the plant, making it spoil more quickly. Sterilizing them with alcohol can also help. Then, thoroughly clean and wash your microgreens before storing them and refrigerating them properly.
Are there ways to extend the shelf life of microgreens?
Other than storing them properly and harvesting them properly as well, there are no real tricks to making your microgreens last longer. They are a food that needs to be used quickly, so make sure you have a plan when you buy or harvest them!