The Difference Between Sprouts, Microgreens and Baby Greens

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If someone says something about organic micro greens, if you’ve never really heard anything about them you probably just think that they are some sort of vegetable. If you know a little bit, then the first thing you might think of when talking about organic micro greens is that they are the infant version of a regular vegetable or a sprout. However, microgreens are definitely not the same thing as small veggies or sprouts. They look different, taste different and even the way that they are grow is different.

Sprouts are seeds to. However, they are germinated seeds. That means that the seed is basically asleep and once it wakes up, it becomes a live plant. The nutrients are used to develop the stem. When a sprouting seed is allowed to grow, it will come into a full grown plant eventually. However, before the full grown stage hits, that’s where you’ll find the sprouts that are so crunchy and refreshing. Sprouts can germinate in water but in order to make sure that they don’t get moldy, you have to rinse the seeds a couple of times a day. Sprouts tend to grow very fast and can be harvested in about five days. They don’t need a lot of light or nutrition in order to grow, unlike true leaf microgreens. They have tons of fiber, protein, enzymes and other essential nutrients which is why they are so good for you.

Sprouts are used in a variety of different kinds of dishes mainly because they have unique textures that offer a appetizing contrast. They are pretty mild when it comes to the flavor itself.


The one similar thing is that everything starts out as a seed if it’s a plant. The seeds have a protective shell around them called the coat. The coat has all of the nutrients that the plant needs to survive. These vitamins and nutrients are what help it to grow strong enough to be able to burst out of the shell. Between the shell and the seed is the endosperm. This wraps around the seed to give it additional nutrition.

Now, organic micro greens specially are the result of part of the growth stage when the first few leaves pop out. This is called the cotyledon growth stage. The leaves and stem can both be consumed. Another difference between sprouts and microgreens is that microgreen seeds need to be started in either soil or peat moss instead of water. The soil is what gives microgreen seeds the nutrition that it needs.

These seeds like longer to grow than sprouts. Their growth period is usually somewhere between one and three weeks depending on what you are growing. Organic micro greens have to have a lot of light and ventilation while they are growing.

Microgreens are definitely not baby greens.

Baby greens are simply the leafy parts of the plants that are harvested before the plant really and fully matures. They have developed the first set of leaves but haven’t reached their full potential as of yet.

Microgreens are probably the most flavorful between micros, baby greens and sprouts. You can basically think of these three in stages. The youngest version is a sprout then you have the microgreens, after that come the baby greens and the oldest version is the vegetable itself.

It’s not completely imperative to know which part of the growing stage you are eating but if you want to start growing your own or you want to better informed about the kinds of things that you are putting in to your body then it’s a good idea to understand the difference. It also helps to know the differences between all of them if you cook a lot. Each stage of the plant goes better in some dishes than others. If you are making a fully vegetable dish then you might be able to combine them and you’ll still have a delicious meal on your hands. However, if you are making a specific meat dish, you will want to know which green is going to pair better with it.

There are more differences between the different stages of the plant but this should be enough to get you started.

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