Have you been seeing lots of mysterious greens sprouting up at the market lately? Microgreens may be the reason. These luscious, bright spreads of sprout-like leafy veggies are cropping up across Arizona markets, but many customers aren’t sure what they are, or more importantly, how to use them. 

Microgreens are the seedlings of vegetables and herbs. These greens are often used as garnishes, but they can also be used to enhance the flavors in your food. Not only do they add flavor – these powerful little sprouts can add nutritional value to any meal. While they may be small, microgreens pack a punch. They contain many vitamins including C, E, and K. They can also sometimes provide nutrients that you can’t always get from regular vegetables.

Though they may look similar to sprouts, microgreens are actually the state of the growing process before a veggie becomes “baby greens,” and after the sprouting stage. These greens come in a huge variety of flavors, including kale, sunflower, mustard, cilantro, basil and so many more. These light, crunchy, leafy treats can be added to meals like salads, sandwiches, and soups.

Microgreens are a great crop addition for farmers and at-home gardeners. They are relatively inexpensive to grow, and they don’t take long to harvest at all. Microgreens usually take 1 to 3 weeks to be ready for use. They also yield a large harvest in a small amount of space, which means at-home gardeners and even larger-scale growers don’t have to dedicate a great deal of space to grow what they need.

Microgreens are an easy and versatile crop for people all over the state to grow and enjoy. They can be grown directly in the ground or in a shallow container, making them perfect people in both urban and rural settings. This simple process makes it possible for microgreens to be grown year-round.

A variety of delicious dishes can be made or enhanced with microgreens. Check out the tasty recipes below and start exploring all of the possibilities this little plant has to offer.

Next time you’re at the farmer’s market, don’t pass up on these greens — and if you’re a SNAP customer, make sure to double up on these mighty veggies! They are sure to spice up your meals and your garden.