Microgreens : A Beginners Guide to Growing and Enjoying Them

Have you ever wanted to start your own garden but didn’t have the space or time for a full-sized plot? Or maybe you’re just looking for a new way to add some fresh, nutritious greens to your meals.

Whatever your reason, microgreens might just be the answer you’ve been searching for. These tiny plant sprouts are packed with flavor and nutrients, making them a popular choice among health-conscious foodies and chefs alike.

But what exactly are microgreens, how do you grow them, and how can you use them in your meals? In this beginner’s guide, we’ll answer all these questions and more so that you can start enjoying the benefits of microgreens right away.

So let’s get started!

What are Microgreens?

If you’re looking for a fun and easy way to add some serious nutrition to your meals, microgreens are the way to go! These tiny seedlings are essentially baby plants that pack a ton of flavor and nutrients into each little leaf.

In fact, studies have shown that microgreens can contain up to 40 times more vital nutrients than their mature counterparts. Microgreens come in a variety of flavors and colors, making them not only nutritious but also visually appealing.

Some popular varieties include broccoli, kale, radish, sunflower, and pea shoots. Each type has its own unique taste profile and nutritional benefits. For example, broccoli microgreens are high in sulforaphane which is known for its cancer-fighting properties while sunflower microgreens are rich in vitamin E.

Growing your own microgreens at home is easier than you might think! In just a few simple steps, you can have fresh greens ready to harvest in as little as two weeks.

But before we get into how to grow them, let’s explore some of the many benefits and nutrition that these tiny powerhouses offer.

How to Grow Microgreens

If you’re eager to grow your own microgreens, there are a few key things to keep in mind. First, it’s important to choose the right seeds for the type of microgreen you want to grow.

Then, you’ll need to prepare your growing medium and make sure it’s moist enough before sowing your seeds. Once they’re planted, regular watering is crucial until they’re ready to harvest and enjoy.

With these tips in mind, you’ll be on your way to a thriving microgreen garden in no time!

Choosing the Right Seeds

Picking out the perfect seeds is as easy as pie when it comes to growing microgreens. The first step in seed selection is to choose a variety that you enjoy eating. Some popular options include arugula, broccoli, kale, and radish.

Additionally, make sure to purchase high-quality seeds from a reputable source to ensure healthy growth. Next, consider the germination techniques for your chosen seeds. Some varieties prefer to be soaked in water before planting, while others may require scarification or stratification methods.

Researching the specific needs of your seeds will help ensure successful germination and vigorous growth. With these factors in mind, you’ll be on your way to selecting the perfect seeds for your microgreen garden.

When it comes to preparing the growing medium, there are a few key steps you’ll need to take.

Preparing the Growing Medium

To get started with your microgreen garden, you’ll need to create the perfect growing medium that will provide your seeds with the essential nutrients they need to thrive.

First, consider your container options. You can use anything from plastic trays and pots to recycled containers like egg cartons or yogurt cups. Just make sure that whatever container you choose has drainage holes at the bottom to prevent waterlogging.

Next, it’s time to prepare your ideal soil mixture. A good mix should be light and fluffy while also retaining moisture well. You can create this by combining equal parts of peat moss, vermiculite, and perlite. Alternatively, you can use a pre-made potting mix specifically designed for seed starting.

Once you have your container and soil ready, it’s time to move on to sowing and watering your microgreens!

Sowing and Watering

Now that you’ve got your container and soil ready, it’s time to get your hands dirty and start sowing the seeds! Whether you’re growing microgreens in soil or hydroponically, the key is to sprinkle the seeds evenly over the surface of the medium.

For hydroponic sowing, consider using a spray bottle filled with water to avoid disturbing the seeds. You can also germinate them first by soaking them in water for a few hours before placing them on top of your growing medium.

Remember to water them gently with a watering can or spray bottle, as if they’re delicate little babies needing care. The benefits of hydroponic sowing include faster growth rates and higher yields compared to traditional soil-based methods.

Additionally, using recycled materials for watering, such as old plastic bottles or jars, can reduce waste while providing an affordable way to keep your microgreens hydrated.

As your microgreens grow, keep an eye on them and make sure they stay moist but not too wet. In our next section about harvesting and storing these delicious greens, we’ll show you how to know when they’re ready and what containers work best for keeping them fresh after harvest.

Harvesting and Storing

When your sprouts have reached the right size, it’s time to harvest and store them for later use. Here are some tips on proper storage techniques that will prevent spoilage and maximize freshness, extending shelf life:

– Harvest only what you need: Microgreens are best when harvested fresh, so it’s important to only harvest what you need at the moment. This ensures that any leftover greens will remain fresh until your next harvest.

– Store in a cool place: After harvesting your microgreens, make sure to store them in a cool place away from direct sunlight. This helps slow down the process of decay and keeps them crisp and fresh.

– Use breathable containers: When storing microgreens, it’s important to use containers that allow air flow. Using plastic bags or containers with no ventilation can cause condensation buildup and lead to spoilage.

– Keep moisture levels in check: Moisture is the enemy of microgreens as it can speed up decay and promote mold growth. Make sure to pat dry any excess moisture before storing your greens.

By following these simple steps, you can ensure maximum freshness and extend the shelf life of your microgreens. However, there are still common mistakes that beginners tend to make when harvesting and storing their greens.

Let’s take a look at some of these mistakes to avoid in order to maintain top quality greens for longer periods of time.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Avoid these common mistakes when growing microgreens so you can enjoy a bountiful harvest. One mistake that many beginners make is overwatering their microgreens. While it’s important to keep the soil moist, too much water can lead to root rot and ultimately kill your plants. To avoid this, make sure your containers have proper drainage holes and only water when the top layer of soil feels dry to the touch.

Another common mistake is not providing enough light for your microgreens. These plants need plenty of sunlight or artificial light to grow and thrive. If you don’t have a sunny window or enough natural light in your home, consider investing in grow lights specifically designed for indoor gardening. Place the lights close to the plants and leave them on for 12-16 hours each day.

To emphasize how important proper lighting is for growing healthy microgreens, take a look at this table:

Amount of Light Growth Rate Color
Adequate Fast Vibrant
Insufficient Slow Pale

As you can see, providing adequate lighting not only speeds up growth but also enhances color intensity. By avoiding the mistake of not enough light, you’ll be able to produce vibrant and healthy microgreens that are packed with flavor.

Now that you know some common mistakes to avoid when growing microgreens, let’s move on to how you can use them in your meals without step-by-step instructions.

How to Use Microgreens in Your Meals

Ready to take your microgreens game to the next level? Here are some key points on how to use them in your meals.

First, don’t be afraid to experiment with different varieties and mix and match flavors for a truly unique culinary experience.

Second, sharing your homegrown microgreens with others isn’t just a generous gesture but can also inspire more people to try their hand at growing their own greens.

Lastly, continue to learn and grow as you cultivate your green thumb – there’s always something new to discover in the world of microgreens!

Experimenting with Different Varieties

By trying out various types of microgreens, you can discover a diverse range of flavors and textures to add to your meals and elevate your culinary experience. Experiment with different varieties such as radish, mustard, sunflower, pea shoots, or basil. Each one has its unique flavor profile that can be used for different dishes.

For example, radish microgreens have a spicy kick that pairs well with sushi rolls or avocado toast. Mustard microgreens have a peppery taste that goes well with sandwiches and salads. When experimenting with different microgreens, consider their culinary applications and flavor pairings.

Sunflower microgreens have a nutty taste that complements roasted vegetables or grilled meat dishes. Pea shoot microgreens have a sweet flavor that works well in smoothies or mixed into pasta dishes. Basil microgreens offer an aromatic touch to pizzas or caprese salad. The possibilities are endless when it comes to incorporating these tiny greens into your meals.

As you become more familiar with the world of microgreen growing, you may find yourself wanting to share your harvest with others. Instead of simply giving away handfuls of greens without any context, consider sharing some recipe ideas along with them.

In the next section, we’ll explore ways to showcase your homegrown microgreens while inspiring others to try their hand at growing them as well.

Sharing Your Microgreens with Others

Share your homegrown microgreens with others to spread the love of fresh, healthy produce and inspire them to experiment with unique flavor combinations in their own cooking. Sharing techniques can vary from simply giving away a small container of microgreens to hosting a tasting party.

Here are some creative ideas for sharing your microgreens:

– Create mini herb gardens as gifts: Fill small pots with soil and plant different varieties of microgreens. Add labels with instructions on how to care for them and use them in cooking.

– Host a potluck: Invite friends over and ask each person to bring a dish featuring microgreens. This is a great way to try new recipes and share tips on growing microgreens.

– Donate excess harvests: If you have more than you can use or give away, consider donating it to local food banks or shelters.

By sharing your homegrown microgreens, you not only introduce others to the joys of growing their own food but also encourage them to be creative in the kitchen. As you continue learning about different varieties and experimenting with creative recipes, you’ll discover even more ways to incorporate these nutritious greens into your daily diet.

Continuing to Learn and Grow

Now that you’ve shared your microgreens with others, it’s time to reflect on your progress and continue learning.

Take some time to think about the successes and challenges you faced during the growing process. Did you encounter any issues with pests or lighting? Did certain microgreens thrive while others struggled? Reflecting on these experiences can help you improve your skills for future growing endeavors.

To further enhance your knowledge, seek out resources such as books, online forums, and workshops. These sources can provide valuable information on various techniques, tips for troubleshooting common problems, and even new recipes to try with your microgreens.

Joining a community of fellow microgreen enthusiasts can also provide opportunities for collaboration and sharing ideas.

Remember that learning is a continuous process, so don’t be afraid to experiment and try new things as you grow in this exciting hobby.


Congratulations! You’ve just learned all about microgreens and how to grow them.

Now that you have your own little garden, it’s time to start enjoying the fruits (or rather, greens) of your labor. Remember, microgreens are packed with flavor and nutrients, making them a great addition to any meal.

So don’t be afraid to experiment with different dishes! Try adding some microgreens to salads, sandwiches, or even as a garnish on top of soups and stews. You’ll be amazed at how much they can enhance the taste and visual appeal of your meals.

As the old adage goes: ‘You reap what you sow.’ So keep tending to your microgreen garden with love and care, and you’ll continue to enjoy their benefits for weeks or even months to come.

Happy growing!