Tiny baby greens, known as microgreens, have gained popularity for their culinary appeal and potential health benefits. They are often praised for their high nutrient content and are considered a nutritious addition to a balanced diet. Although they are commonly eaten fresh – right after harvesting – microgreens can also be dried and enjoyed in a number of ways.

What are microgreens?

Microgreens are young, edible plants that are harvested at an early stage of growth, typically when they are about 1-3 inches tall. They are harvested just after the first true leaves have developed, which is usually about 7-21 days after germination, depending on the plant variety.

Microgreens are often grown from the seeds of vegetables, herbs, or other plants and are harvested before they reach full maturity. They are known for their intense flavors, vibrant colors, and nutrient density. Common types of microgreens include kale, arugula, radish, broccoli, mustard, basil, cilantro, and many more.

These tiny greens are packed with nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, making them a popular choice for garnishing dishes, adding flavor and texture to salads, sandwiches, and wraps, or incorporating them into smoothies and juices. 

With The Good Box microgreen grow kit, you can grow your own microgreens at home to have fresh produce all year long!

How to dry microgreens

Drying microgreens is not a common practice because they are typically consumed fresh, but here are three methods and reasons why you might consider drying them:

3 reasons to dry microgreens

Extended shelf life: Drying microgreens removes moisture, which helps prevent spoilage and extends their shelf life.

Convenience: Dried microgreens are convenient to store and use year-round, especially when fresh microgreens are not readily available.

Nutrient retention: Proper drying methods can help retain the nutritional value of microgreens, allowing you to enjoy their health benefits even when they’re not fresh.

Air drying

Air drying preserves the microgreens by removing excess moisture, which helps prevent mold growth and extends their shelf life.

  • Lay the microgreens in a single layer on a clean kitchen towel or paper towel.
  • Place them in a well-ventilated area away from direct sunlight.
  • Depending on humidity levels, allow them to air dry for several hours to a day.
  • Once dried, store them in an airtight container in a cool, dry place.

Dehydrating

Dehydrating microgreens preserve their nutrients and flavor while removing moisture, making them shelf-stable for longer.

  • Use a food dehydrator set to a low temperature (around 95°F to 115°F).
  • Arrange the microgreens on the dehydrator trays in a single layer, ensuring good air circulation.
  • Dry them for several hours until they are crispy and brittle.
  • Store the dried microgreens in an airtight container away from light and moisture.

Oven drying

Oven drying quickly removes moisture from microgreens, preserving their nutritional content and flavor.

  • Preheat your oven to the lowest setting (usually around 170°F or lower).
  • Place the microgreens on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Put the baking sheet in the oven and leave the door slightly ajar to allow moisture to escape.
  • Check the microgreens periodically and remove them once they are dry and crispy.
  • Store dried greens in an airtight container once cooled.

How to use dried microgreens

Dried microgreens can be a versatile and flavorful addition to many dishes. Here are several ways to use them:

Garnish soups and stews. Sprinkle dried microgreens on top of hot soups, stews, or chilis just before serving. They will add a burst of color, texture, and flavor to your dishes.

Salad toppings. Add dried microgreens to salads for an extra layer of texture and flavor. They can provide a crunchy element and enhance the visual appeal of your salads.

Sandwiches and wraps. Sprinkle dried microgreens on sandwiches, wraps, or burgers to add freshness and a pop of flavor. They can complement various fillings and add an interesting twist to your favorite sandwiches.

Pizza toppings. Use dried microgreens as a pizza topping. Scatter them over the pizza before baking or sprinkle them on top just after it comes out of the oven to preserve their texture and flavor.

Omelets and scrambles. Mix dried microgreens into omelets or scrambled eggs for added flavor and nutrition. They can bring a vibrant touch to your breakfast dishes.

Pasta and grain dishes. For a nutritious boost, stir dried microgreens into cooked pasta or grain dishes, such as risotto or quinoa. They can enhance the overall flavor profile of the dish.

Homemade seasoning blends. Grind dried microgreens into a powder using a spice grinder and use them as a seasoning blend for various dishes. Combine them with other herbs and spices to create your own unique seasoning mixes.

Baked goods. For a flavorful twist, incorporate dried microgreens into homemade bread, muffins, or savory pastries. They can add both color and flavor to baked goods.

Infused oils and vinegar. Add dried microgreens to homemade infused oils or vinegar to impart their flavor. Simply place the dried microgreens in a clean, airtight container and cover them with oil or vinegar. Let the mixture sit for a few days to allow the flavors to infuse before using.

For information about growing and using microgreens, pick up my book Mastering Microgreens.

Now on sale for 46% off! Get your copy here.

Happy Growing,

Hi There! Susan Here ?

(aka the Earthen Mamma)

As a Certified Health Coach, Master Gardener, and Author, my goal is to equip and inspire you to live the healthy and sustainable life you deserve.

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