What’s The Point Of Microgreens? (Solved & Explained!)

Microgreens are a nutrient dense addition to any type of diet and a great way to add visual appeal and rich flavor to your dish. These trendy little seedlings have grown in popularity and variety for the various ways they enhance your dishes, and offer a unique way to get the daily dose of vitamins and minerals the doctor ordered.

You have probably heard of microgreens being referred to as a superfood because of their health benefits and what they are derived from. They haven’t been around long, but microgreens have evolved in their short lifespan to become a must-have item in your fridge. They can be easily grown at home, or purchased at most health food stores.

What Exactly Are Microgreens?

Microgreens are usually young vegetable and herb greens that are harvested before they have a chance to mature. Once a seed has been planted, most seeds take anywhere between a few days to a couple of weeks to grow into microgreens. Microgreens add intense flavor to a dish in any quantity and are a favorite among adventurous chefs. There often ‘cute’ appearance is also a great option for dressing up a dish with a bit of visual flair.

Are Microgreens Only Vegetables?

With how easily food can be innovated, grains and legumes have actually been used to grow into microgreens as well. The seeds of these items typically need to be soaked before planting them in order to grow properly into microgreens.There are over 20 varieties of microgreens in existence now since their inception.

Have Microgreens Always Been Around?

Microgreens are actually a newer food product that were created in the 1980s in California. They became popular there as chefs began incorporating these adorable greens into their unique dishes to establish new flavors and enhance their dishes’ appearances. Many food trends start in California, and microgreens are no exception.

Are Microgreens The Same Thing As Sprouts?

While sprouts and microgreens can look similar, they are actually plants that are harvested at two completely different stages. One physical difference between the two is that sprouts have no leaves, and they are usually grown and harvested much quicker than microgreens. Sprouts are also easier to find commercially and don’t cost as much as microgreens do.

How Are Microgreens Grown?

Microgreens can be grown by being planted in a planter with soil or in hydroponic plants. They must be grown in a food safe facility to ensure no contamination. A lot of plants will use what’s called a Nutrient Film Technique, where a constant flow of nutrient rich water helps the microgreens sprout.

What Are The Most Common Microgreens I Can Find?

There are extensive plants that can be grown as microgreens. Well-known greens such as broccoli, arugula, swiss chard, spinach, and watercress are commonly found in stores. There are also some popular vegetable microgreens such as cabbage, beets, carrots, and endives. Other examples are cucumbers, leeks, onions, and even melons.

What Are Some More Unique Microgreens That I Can Find?

Many of your favorite herbs, grains, and legumes are also grown into microgreens. Herbs and seasonings like dill, garlic, mint, and basil are great microgreens to use in dishes. Even foods like oats, rice, beans, barley, and corn can be grown into microgreens.

What Flavor Profiles Do Microgreens Have?

Microgreens pack a punch in terms of flavor; you can find pretty much any flavor profile you desire, from spicy to bitter and neutral. Regardless of which profile a microgreen might have, the flavor will be strong and detectable. They can be a little daunting for a novice chef to play with, but with practice comes delicious perfection.

How Can I Consume Microgreens?

Microgreens do not have to be cooked and are generally safe to consume while raw. You can blend them up in a smoothie or juice to mute their strong flavor, or cook them in a soup to add a nutritious punch. They can also add some crunch to your salads or sandwiches, and add flair to your hot dishes.

How Quickly Do Microgreens Expire?

Microgreens are often sold before they are harvested so they last a lot longer. If you can find microgreens still in their soil in a plastic container, you can simply cut the microgreen from the root, wash them, and they are ready for you to enjoy. Keep them stored in your fridge and they should last about two weeks.

What Types Of Nutrients Can I Get From Microgreens?

Microgreens are rich in very important nutrients and minerals like potassium, iron, and magnesium, which are essential in any diet. They are also antioxidant rich and contain polyphenols.

While the vitamins and minerals contained in each microgreen strain vary, they are said to contain up to nine times higher nutritional value compared to matured greens.

What Are The Health Benefits Of Microgreens?

Consuming microgreens can have extensive health benefits such as reducing your risk for cancer, heart disease, and diabetes. This is because of how rich they are in antioxidants and polyphenols. No conclusive studies have been done on microgreens specifically to determine health benefits, but with the amount of nutrients they contain, they are definitely a healthy food option.

Why Do Microgreens Cost So Much?

There is a lot of labor expended to grow microgreens which can add to their cost. They require very specific temperature and humidity conditions to thrive and particular equipment to harvest them at such a large scale. The numerous types of microgreens also need very specific conditions to grow, meaning a farmer must be able to adapt their growing methods as such.

Can I Grow Microgreens At Home To Save Money?

Growing microgreens on a smaller scale at home is possible, and not a costly endeavor. It’s important to buy seedlings at reputable businesses and ask an expert at a garden centre for help. Many people grow microgreens on their window sill, as all they need is water, sunlight, and the proper soil to grow in.