What are microgreens and why are they so good for you?

 

Do You Keep Hearing About "Microgreens?"

Are you wondering, "What are microgreens?" You might have seen microgreens before in a health food store, on a fancy dish at a restaurant, or on a Food Network show. Yes, microgreens are all the rage for several reasons: 

- Microgreens make every dish look stunning and taste delicious.

- Microgreens are a superfood.

- Microgreens are really easy to add any meal.

Microgreens on avocado toast.

Microgreens on avocado toast.

Microgreens on grilled squash rings.

Microgreens on grilled squash rings.

Microgreens mixed into salad.

Microgreens mixed into salad.

So What Are Microgreens Exactly?

Microgreens are the baby versions of vegetables and herbs like broccoli, kale, lettuce, mustard, arugula, cabbage, radish, basil, dill, cilantro, beets, kohlrabi, cauliflower, chia, chives, clover...and lots more...whew! The prefix "micro" in the word "microgreens" really just means "baby" or "seedling," as you would call a baby plant. When a seed is planted and watered, it sprouts and grows, becoming a seedling after seven to fourteen days.

The coolest thing about microgreens? They have the same flavor of the regular version of the vegetable and are often even MORE flavorful! Nibble on a single radish microgreen in your mouth, and you'll instantly know, "WHOAH THAT"S RADISH!" That means a good bet for choosing the best tasting microgreens for you is to go with the vegetable flavors you already know and love! Already love radish? Try micro-radish! It turns out of the microgreens tested in the USDA study, radish was one of the healthiest microgreens. 

Thousands of ten-day-old broccoli seedlings, or microgreens.

Thousands of ten-day-old broccoli seedlings, or microgreens.

One broccoli seedling can become a mature broccoli in about four months, given the right care and conditions!

One broccoli seedling can become a mature broccoli in about four months, given the right care and conditions!

Microgreens Health Benefits

Now that you know the answer to "what are microgreens," let's answer the "why eat microgreens" question. The USDA and University of Maryland published research showing that the microgreen versions of a vegetable can actually be four to forty times more nutritiously dense than the regular version! SUPERFOOD!  

Scientists Zhenlei Xiao, Gene E. Lester, Yaguang Luo, and Qin Wang measured different microgreens nutrition levels like Vitamin C, E, K, and beta carotene. They then compared those numbers to a database of nutrient information on mature vegetables and herbs and found these staggering results!

To see it for yourself, see the article "Mighty Microgreens" or find their publication titled "Assessment of Vitamin and Carotenoid Concentrations of Emerging Food Products: Edible Microgreens." 

Common Misconceptions About Microgreens

There are a few common misconceptions about microgreens thrown around. Let me set the record straight right here, right now. 

- Microgreens are some weird GMO version of a "normal vegetable."

FALSE! Noooo no no no. Just as we were all babies once, the heads of broccoli and bunches of radish we eat were all babies once too!  Microgreens are just the baby or seedling version of the "normal vegetable."

- Microgreens are for vegans, vegetarians, and hippies only.

FALSE. Regarding hippies...sorry, but according to The New York Times, The Hippies Have Won. So you might want to convert to the hippie diet after all.  Regarding vegans and vegetarians...meat-lovers can love microgreens too! Allow me to demonstrate.

A delicious snack of turkey slices topped with buffalo wing sauce and microgreens.

A delicious snack of turkey slices topped with buffalo wing sauce and microgreens.

Daikon radish microgreens on a hefty beef burger.

Daikon radish microgreens on a hefty beef burger.

- They're hard to grow at home.

FALSE AGAIN! That's why we're here. HAMAMA products make it incredibly easy and fun to grow your own microgreens at home. We offer a no mess microgreens growing kit that doesn't require watering and works in low light! You don't need sunlight to grow your microgreens, so if you have a dark apartment you can still grow your own food! Regular old ceiling lighting will do the trick.

All you do is pour 3 cups of water in the kit, plant a Seed Quilt, and come back to eat your homegrown microgreens in 7-10 days. We offer several Seed Quilt flavors right now: Spicy Daikon Radish, Hearty Broccoli, Refreshing Cabbage, Sweet Wheatgrass, and Super Salad Mix.  The Super Salad Mix has all the good stuff: broccoli, kale, arugula, cauliflower, kohlrabi, and cabbage. Yum :)

To get started, order the HAMAMA Kit and Seed Quilt subscription!

To get started, order the HAMAMA Kit and Seed Quilt subscription!

Grow like a pro and harvest microgreens three times per month. 

Grow like a pro and harvest microgreens three times per month. 

By Camille R.