Learn why you and your family should be eating broccoli microgreens. These nutritional powerhouses have mega health benefits that you don't want to miss out on. Plus learn how to grow and incorporate them into your food!
Getting your kids to eat broccoli can be tough. My oldest son tells me broccoli is spicy on his tongue. I mean what is that? Broccoli is not spicy, so that means my kid a) has that crazy gene where broccoli tastes bad to him b) is trying to get out of eating broccoli c) having an allergic reaction.
I am not sure which of those is the best answer, but since broccoli is healthy, he has to suffer the occasional spicy, possible allergic, don’t want to eat broccoli tongue. But do you want to know what is even healthier than broccoli?
Broccoli microgreens are baby broccoli plants that are young and harvested about 10 days after germination. They are extremely powerful little plants and today we are talking about why you should be adding broccoli microgreens into your family's diet and everything you need to know on how to make it happen.
You will learn the health benefits you and your family will gain from adding broccoli microgreens into your diet and how to incorporate them into family meals. This article will also guide you through how to grow and harvest your very own broccoli microgreens.
Let’s explore the top reasons you should be adding broccoli microgreens into your meals.
Studies have shown that broccoli microgreens can have up to 40 times the amount of vitamins and minerals than their mature counterparts (source). How microgreens are grown can have an impact on the amount of vitamin c found in broccoli microgreens, but in general broccoli microgreens have very high amounts of vitamin C.
Broccoli microgreens have larger quantities of magnesium, manganese, copper, and zinc. These are very essential minerals that most people are deficient in. These high traces of minerals found in microgreens was not affected by the way they were grown (source).
Microgreens are amazing because they actually contain all of these essential and powerful nutrients just 10-14 days after germination. So this means it is basically a plant the size of a four leaf clover that has more nutrients, vitamins and minerals than a head of broccoli.
Do you know what this means for a mom to picky kids? This means you can get more nutritional value with less volume by adding microgreens to your family's food. What seems easier to make your kids eat, or to hide in food for that matter? Broccoli florets or broccoli microgreens that are smaller than a four leaf clover? I pick the latter.
Broccoli microgreens contain the highest amount of sulforaphane available compared to almost any other food available.
Sulforaphane is a sulphur compound found in cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, bok choy and cabbage.
Here are just a few benefits sulfurophane is known for:
Easy to grow
Broccoli microgreens are extremely easy to grow. In fact all microgreens are black thumb friendly. Microgreens can be eaisly grown indoors or outdoors, on your windowsill or in a greenhouse.
They are also ready to harvest in less than two weeks from planting. This makes them a perfect project for kids, who we all know, have a very short attention span.
Broccoli microgreens are very undemanding. They don’t need fertilizer, pesticides or even farm to table transport because they are so easy to grow at home.
Gardening has huge benefits for kids and adults. Kids gain a sense of pride, purpose and responsibility when tending to plants. I would have to argue it is the same for adults too. I know I get damn excited and mighty proud when my plants start to grow!
Planting a microgarden also gets kids playing and digging in soil which has shown in studies to have an impact on decreasing anxiety and improving moods.
How to eat broccoli microgreens
There are a ton of ways to eat broccoli microgreens. Depending on your family and their pickiness level you could serve these hidden where the kids can't see them or in something like a salad.
If you need to hide the powerhouse veggie, then I would consider a microgreens smoothie. Green smoothies can taste amazing and can be a great way to add a ton of veggies and fruit into your day without much effort.
Here’s an awesome smoothie we love at our house
Tropical Green Smoothie
- 1 frozen banana
- 4 ounces of pineapple juice
- 4 ounces of milk of choice
- ½ cup of frozen mango berry mix
- ¼ cup microgreens of choice.
Place in the blender in order listed. Blend on high until smooth and serve immediately. Serves 2.
Salads and Sandwiches
Your broccoli microgreens can also be added to any salad or sandwich. Add it in addition to your normal favorites like lettuce and spinach.
Omelettes or Scrambles
Throw those microgreens into your favorite egg scramble, quiche or omelette for a super tasty breakfast.
There is no wrong way to eat microgreens. You can even just snack on a handful of them if you want to give that a try!
How to grow broccoli microgreens at home
To grow microgreens in your home you will need the following:
- A window with lots of sun
- A shallow tray- you can make this or buy. To make the trays simply repurpose the plastic clamshells leftover from your last blueberry or rasberry purchase. Make sure there are holes poked thru the bottom. You could also repurpose wood flats or boxes.
- Organic soil to fill the trays
- Microgreen seeds -microgreens can be created from regular seeds and there is no need to buy special seeds. Keep in mind that you should buy high quality organic seeds when possible. This will ensure they are non gmo as well.
- Prepare your soil by placing in the trays. Ensure your soil is as even as possible. You can use your hand or something with a straight edge like a ruler or cardboard to make sure it is even with no depressions in the soil.
- Sow your seeds. Larger seeds can be pushed down into the soil. Where as smaller seeds can be scattered across your soil then covered with a thin layer (about ⅛ inch) of soil. Seeds can be sown very close together for growing microgreens.
- Water gently. Passthepistil.com suggests a salt and pepper shaker. You could also mist with water.
- Place your trays in a sunny window sill and keep the soil moist. Do not waterlog the soil.
- Microgreens are ready for harvest when the first set of mature leaves appear on the plant. You will first see seed leaves. These are the initial pair of leaves that grow about 4-6 days after planting. Mature true leaves grow after the seed leaves around 10-14 days after planting.
- To harvest, cut the microgreens as close to that soil as possible and enjoy!
- You will need to replant more seeds after each harvest. Don't forget you can throw the old roots into your compost if you have one.
How do broccoli microgreens taste?
Growing broccoli microgreens or any microgreen for that matter really is easy. And we know the health benefits are undeniable. But how broccoli microgreens taste compared to the full grown vegetable?
Most people agree they taste pretty mild and crunchy. Some say there is a slightly bitter taste, but that may go back to that weird gene thing I mentioned at the beginning of the post.
I hope you are inspired to add broccoli microgreens to your familys health and wellness journey. In the event you don’t end up liking the taste it will be a fun way to teach kids about growing food.
It is important to remember your kids will love the process of growing their own food. They will be proud of what they grew, and more curious about how it tastes. In turn this will make them more likely to try a new vegetable! Yipee for that!
Tell me below, have you tried microgreens yet?
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