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14 Nutritious Microgreens That Would Offer Most Nutrients When Eaten

14 Nutritious Microgreens That Would Offer Most Nutrients When Eaten

14 Nutritious Microgreens That Would Offer Most Nutrients When Eaten.

Microgreens are popularly known as superfoods with an enormous amount of nutrition despite their small size. Growing and maintaining them is very easy which has made them a predominant option for individuals who intend to boost their nutritional value without doing too much hard work in the garden.

Microgreens can be used for a wide range of purposes which has made it a top choice to combine with soups, sandwiches, and salads.

14 popular microgreens bursting with nutrients that can be easily grown and eaten are listed below:

  • Radish
  • Sunflower
  • Broccoli
  • Arugula
  • Beets
  • Amaranth
  • Buckwheat
  • Chia
  • Cilantro
  • Kale
  • Mustard
  • Clover
  • Alfalfa
  • Basil

However, when considering the nutritional value of microgreens, some have a higher number of vitamins or minerals than others. For instance, according to research and examination carried out by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), the value of vitamin C, K, and E in microgreens like green daikon radish, cilantro, and red cabbage are the highest compared to about 21 types of microgreens.

Additional information about these microgreens as well as the benefits and the nutritional values these microgreens offer are provided below.

Pea Sprouts

Microgreens And The Methods Used In Growing Them.

Microgreens are completely different from sprouts, and unlike sprouts, they are required to be fully immersed in water and take a longer time to germinate. Basically, microgreens can be considered vegetable greens. Apart from having a smaller size when compared with fully grown greens, they are packed with a higher value of nutrients.

Most restaurants and healthy food promoters include microgreens in their dishes and topics. They have been a top choice for many individuals because of the ease of using them to garnish dishes, the personality they bring when used as toppings as well as other blends.

Another reason microgreens are very popular is because they can be easily grown within a home environment.

General Methods For Growing Microgreens

Microgreens are usually grown using a similar universal method just like other popular greens, either through a hydroponic system or the soil.

The hydroponic method of growing plants involves the use of a water solution rich in nutrients. The soil is not required in a hydroponic system, instead, it involves supporting the root system through an inert medium like rock wool, vermiculite, peat moss, or perlite.

Basically, the concept behind hydroponics is to enable the plant’s root to have direct access to oxygen and the nutrient solution, thereby boosting its growth.

However, when using the soil for growing microgreens, it is important to estimate the optimal seeding rate for the best outcomes. Seeding rate is the amount of germinating seeds together with their weight. Although this estimation is usually not important for individuals who are just starting out, attention should be paid to this estimation after gaining some experience.

Growing microgreens can be carried out using any type of container but the most appropriate type of container should offer air and moisture in the right proportion. Even though a general method exists for growing microgreens, any method you eventually opt for usually has something unique that separates it from other methods.

Furthermore, microgreens differ in germination and harvest rate. Therefore, it is very important to consider the best method that would deliver optimal quality of microgreens when planning the environment where they would be planted or grown. 

Microgreens With The Highest Nutritional Value

Now that you understand the basis of microgreens, some of the popular microgreens with high value of nutrients that can be easily grown in your home environment are described below.

Microgreen Nutrition

Sunflower

Generally, sunflowers are not only popular for their amazing appearance and bright yellow petals, but they also provide edible parts like microgreens. Sunflowers offer several benefits such as reducing blood cholesterol, providing an excellent amount of amino acids, and regulating hormones.

Sunflower microgreens come with a very low amount of calories and are loaded with Vitamins A, E, D, and B. it is also a wellspring of Lutein, Phosphorus, Magnesium, Calcium, Beta-Caretone, Iron, and Potassium.

Including this food in your diet is excellent for your general wellbeing and health.

When starting the process of growing sunflower, it is required to soak the seeds for a minimum of 8 to 24 hours. But you can soak it for about 12 hours just to be safe. Soaking helps to boost the rate of germination as well as the entire growth rate.

Germination occurs between one to two days and harvesting can occur in not more than seven to ten days. A typical seeding rate for sunflower is about 125 grams, depending on a 10 inch by 20-inch tray. Although this estimation can differ based on the size of the growing container or tray.

Radish

The ease of growing radish makes it one of the most common microgreens. Radish microgreens are also known as oriental or daikon. Both radish microgreens and the fully-grown ones come with a peppery and spicy taste.

Radish microgreens are fully packed with carotene and vitamins A, C, E, K, and B. Apart from containing a high amount of dietary fiber and potassium, they offer several health benefits such as relieving constipation, and so on.

Radish seeds are also rich in magnesium, calcium, pantothenic acid, niacin, folic acid, zinc, phosphorus, and iron.

Pre-soaking is not required when planting radish seeds. Typically, it germinates in about four days and can be harvested within 8 and 12 days.

Arugula

The Arugula microgreens can also be referred to as racula or rocket. They are rich in vitamin c and similar to fully-grown arugula. They come with a spicy taste which makes them an excellent option for improving the appearance and taste of any leafy dish or salad.

Apart from its special taste, Arugula microgreens additionally offer numerous health and nutritional benefits such as

Rich in vitamins K, C, A, and copper.

Boost the development of healthy bones.

Regulates blood pressure.

Detoxifies food.

Produces antioxidants.

According to an adjunct professor of nutrition at East Tennessee State University, Monique Ricard, RD, arugula microgreens is highly packed with ascorbic acid (vitamin c), phenols, and glucosinolates (GSLs) which are popularly known to protect against toxins and relieve environmental stress.

Presoaking is not also necessary for arugula microgreens and germination occurs in less than 5 days. It can be harvested between 10 to 14 days. Germination usually occurs quickly and they are known to develop even in extreme weather conditions.

However, it is very important to avoid overwatering the seeds because its seed performs poorly around lots of moisture. For better growth, ensure that they grow in an environment with very low moisture.

Broccoli

You or your loved ones no longer have to be afraid of the leafy green goodness offered by broccoli. Its microgreen does not only offer almost more nutritional value than its full-grown counterpart, it is also less scary, slightly bitter, and comes with a milder taste.

Consuming broccoli generally offers a great deal of nutritional value and its microgreens offer more due to a compound known as sulforaphane that is responsible for its bitter taste. This compound is usually discovered in broccoli, Brussel sprouts, and cabbage. According to studies, it is discovered that sulforaphane can restrict the multiplication of tumor cells. This has made several individuals consider it to help promote good health and prevent tumors although there is not enough evidence to prove this point.

However, as a result of sulforaphane’s high heat sensitivity, it is crucial to avoid cooking or heating broccoli. 

Additionally, broccoli microgreens contain a high amount of vitamins, K, C, A, and protein. It is also effective in safeguarding the body against various health issues like tumor, osteoporosis, and Alzheimer’s disease.

It is popularly known that broccoli contains cancer-inhibiting compounds. Research has also discovered that consuming cruciferous veggies like broccoli can help limit the dangers of different kinds of cancers like breast, lung, colorectal, pancreatic, gastric, and prostate cancers.

The germination of broccoli microgreens occurs within four days. They are very popular for growing pretty quickly and harvesting occurs between 7 to 9 days although harvesting is sometimes projected to occur after 9 to 14 days.

Beets

Beet microgreens are available in three different types which are:

Early Wonder Tall Top

Bull’s Blood, and

Yellow

The Bulls Blood is the most common kind of beet. Beets are popularly known for their red color and this type of microgreen comes with vibrant red color. Beet microgreens offer several nutritional benefits and can be a viable option for individuals who dislikes the earthy taste of the full-grown beet.

The taste of beet microgreens is usually much sweeter and less earthy. They contain a low amount of fat and are a good source of folic acid, nitrate, minerals, fiber, and vitamins. Also, beets are a good source of nitrates and potent antioxidants.

Beets naturally contain high levels of nitrates that help to reduce blood pressure and ultimately lower the risk of heart failure, attack, and stroke.

Beet microgreens offer the following health and nutritional benefits.

Contains high levels of vitamins C, E, and K.

Useful for eliminating toxins in the body and offers potent antioxidants.

Helps to limit stress.

Relieves headaches and several other diseases in the body temporarily.

Lowers the chances of diabetes and heart diseases. 

Germination and growth of beet microgreens usually take longer when compared with other microgreens. however, presoaking the seeds for about 4 to 8 hours can boost the germination which can typically take about five days and harvesting can occur within 11 and 25 days or more.

Kale

Full-grown kale is a very common veggie among popular food enthusiasts. This has increased the prominence of kale microgreens owing to its many health and nutritional benefits.

Some of the popular types of kale are:

Toscano, Red Russian, Vates Blue Curled, Lacinato.

If you want to avoid the bitterness and uneven texture associated with the mature kale, kale microgreen is a better option. The taste of kale microgreens is slightly bitter and mild, very similar to broccoli and spinach.

Kale is popularly known as the most nutritious microgreen. It is regarded as the food having the highest value of nutrients on earth.

A few of the nutritional benefits that can be provided by kale microgreens are vitamins C, A, B6, and K1, rich in antioxidants and excellent for the skin.

Growing kale requires the hydroponic method for optimal results. Using the hydroponic method requires the use of a water-based solution to grow plants by simply using a mineral solution rich in nutrients, without using the soil.

Presoaking is not required when growing kale since the hydroponic method is employed. Germination typically occurs within 4 days and harvesting occurs within 9 to 10 days.

Cilantro

Another name for cilantro is coriander. Its best version is the microgreens which also has a potent citrus taste like the fully grown version.

Cilantro microgreen is an excellent source of vitamins B, C, A, K, potassium, iron, zinc, and calcium. Consuming cilantro microgreens helps to promote strong and healthy bones, vision, and blood sugar regulation.

It is also loaded with a lot of antioxidants that are beneficial to health.

Coriander is packed with antioxidants that help to boost the immune system and offer neuroprotective and anti-inflammatory effects.

Cilantro grows longer than most of the other microgreens available. Its seeds are usually available as either split or complete. Although some experts do not recommend presoaking, this decision is usually based on your discretion. However, pre soaking for about 4 to 8 hours is sufficient for cilantro seeds. However. Pre-soaking can be skipped for split seeds.

Additionally, to achieve optimal results, the seeds should be placed in an environment that is cold below 21 degrees Celsius or 70-degree Fahrenheit. Germination for cilantro occurs within 4 to 6 days which can be harvested within 17 or 20 days. the coconut coir or soil medium are the best means of developing cilantro microgreens.

Basil

Basil microgreens are available in numerous types having their own texture and taste. Some of the tastes include sweet, spicy, cinnamon, zesty, and so on. Some of the common kinds of basil are listed below.

Bicolor

Lemon

Red Rubin

Thai

Genovese

Basil microgreens contain a high amount of vitamin k and polyphenols. They also come with an excellent anti-inflammatory effect and help to regulate metabolism and other natural function of the body.

Basils are popular in traditional Chinese medicine, western dishes, Ayurvedic drugs as well as other universal health systems.

It offers several benefits that are advantageous to health.

According to a top research scientist in inflammation, Barry Sears, basil is loaded with polyphenols that promote a healthy gut and good health by lowering inflammation and oxidation.

Pre-soaking is not required when planting basil seeds as it could make them develop a gel-like coating and stick together which could make planting very difficult. The best method is to create a soil medium that makes them become moist before planting.

Basil seeds germinate within 5 days and harvesting can be done within 12 to 16 days.

Chia

Chia microgreens are the best choice when you intend to increase your intake of protein and fiber. They are popularly known as one of the healthiest foods available.

Chia microgreens help to promote a better digestive system and lower the chances of diabetes. They have a crunchy texture and tastes slightly bitter which makes them an excellent addition to salads and sandwiches.

Chia is loaded with a lot of nutrients with minimal fats and calories. They are also a good source of fiber antioxidants, calcium, and magnesium.

Chia seeds are similar to basil seeds which produce a gel-like coating when presoaked. Therefore, the hydroponic or soil medium is the best option for growing them. Whatever medium you opt for, ensure that it is uniformly spread and dry before planting.

Chia seeds germinate about 4 days after planting and harvesting occurs between 8 to 12 days. Due to their rapid rate of germination, chia microgreens are an excellent option for beginners.

Clover

Clover microgreens are an excellent source of magnesium, protein, zinc, and vitamins K, C, B, and A. They also offer a very low number of calories which implies that consuming a huge amount would have no impact other than to only provide healthy nutrients into the body. Clover microgreens also help to lower the chances of diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and improve the function of the body.

The juicy taste and crispy feel of the clover microgreen make it very popular.

The clover microgreen can be easily grown using any preferred medium ranging from a wet cloth, a glass medium, the hydroponic medium as well as the soil. The rate of germination is also very rapid with a high success rate.

The hydroponic medium is still the most appropriate method of growing clover microgreen. Germination usually occurs within four days and can be harvested as fast as the eighth day although maturity can take up to 12 days.

Buckwheat

Buckwheat microgreens are popular for their mildly bitter taste and the series of health benefits and nutrients it offers. Buckwheat is gluten-free and has no relation to wheat. 

Buckwheat offers several nutritional benefits such as:

Promotes healthy growth of teeth and bones

Offers protein that improves gut health

A good source of carotenoid

Lowers the chances of cancer

Helps to prevent or regulate symptoms of diabetes.

The essential dietary component of buckwheat is carbs. It also contains antioxidants, proteins, and other crucial minerals. Buckwheat offers more nutrients than most grains out there.

Presoaking the seeds of buckwheat is usually done at your discretion. Presoaking for about 12 to 14 hours prior to planting can quicken its rate of germination. Buckwheat is among the microgreens with the fastest rate of germination.

Harvesting can also occur between 8 to 14 days. However, it is crucial to consider its fagopyrin content which can cause mild skin irritation when it is overly consumed.

Alfalfa

Alfalfa is as sweet as its name and popularly used as a medicinal product. Apart from being an excellent addition to salads and sandwiches, its special nutty taste helps create a unique personality to any of your dishes. 

Alfalfa is an excellent source of vitamins K and C. it is also packed with lots of nutrients, helps to regulate cholesterol, improves metabolism, and offers lots of antioxidants.

Alfalfa contains a plant compound known as saponin which according to human and animal experiments has shown to help lower cholesterol levels.

The hydroponic medium is usually the preferred method of growing alfalfa. Presoaking is not required before planting its seeds. Germination occurs after about 5 days and can be harvested between 10 to 15 days after planting.

Amaranth

Nutrients in amaranth offer significant benefits, some of them are:

Providing a significant amount of potassium, calcium, dietary fiber, and several minerals.

Rich in vitamins E, C, and A.

Improves healthy metabolism

Helps fight against cardiovascular diseases.

One serving of amaranth offers a significant amount of manganese that is more than your daily requirements. Manganese helps to promote proper brain performance and can prevent safeguard against neurological ailments. Also, it is a good source of magnesium that is known to be required for about 300 body functions such as muscle contraction, and DNA synthesis.

The growth process and germination of this microgreen are very easy and fast. Amaranth usually germinates after about 5 days and harvesting can occur within 14 to 18 days.

Amaranth should be planted in a low-lit environment although its growth might take a bit longer. This might make it quite difficult for beginners to grow. 

Mustard

Consuming mustard microgreens will offer a lot of nutrients to your body. Mustard microgreens are available in different kinds and apart from providing a special feel and taste to dishes, it comes with different tastes like spicy, mild, and sweet.

The different kinds of mustard microgreens are:

Wasabina

Golden Frills

Red Giant

Barbarossa

Mustard microgreens are an excellent source of vitamins B6, E, A, K, and C. it also contains compounds that can fight cancer, improve the health of the heart and eyes.

Mustard microgreens are highly packed with important nutrients and compounds such as vitamins C, K, and A. Therefore, consuming them makes it very beneficial for the heart and eyes, and comes with properties that boost immunity and help fight cancer.

Germination of mustard seeds can take up to 5 days and harvesting can occur after about 5 to 8 days. Presoaking isn’t required for mustard seeds and they can be developed optimally in a soil or through the hydroponic medium.

Wrap Up

Microgreens are loaded with a lot of nutrients and growing them offers numerous benefits. They also contain high nutritional value than most fully grown green vegetables even with their small size. It is definitely a healthy and excellent addition to any meal.

There are up to about 100 varieties of microgreens therefore settling for a particular microgreen to grow is based on your discretion. However, we believe that the above list consisting of 14 microgreens with very high nutritional value can motivate you to easily select one to grow.

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