Eat Drink Better Sunflower Shoots

Published on March 27th, 2010 | by Rachel Shulman


Sunflower Shoot Salads

For the past few weeks, I’ve been practically living on salads – one of the many perks of working on a small organic farm and vineyard that specializes in microgreens and shoots.

Microgreens (such as arugula and radish) and shoots (like pea and sunflower) spend only a week or two in the soil. They are harvested at the stage in between sprouts and baby greens, after the plant has established its roots and developed its “seed leaves” but before the plant has developed its “true leaves.”

Although I’d sampled microgreens and pea shoots at restaurants before I started working on the farm, I’d never tasted sunflower shoots. They’re crisp, mildly nutty, and a nutritional super food.

Look for sunflower shoots at your local farmers market (many producers grow them indoors year round) or grow your own at home.

Because sunflower shoots are pretty crunchy, they pair best with something creamy. Here are some topping ideas for a sunflower shoot salad:

  • Goat cheese + lemon vinaigrette (Blend 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, 1/4 cup lemon juice, 1 tablespoon warm water, the zest of one lemon, salt, and black pepper.)
  • Cannellini beans + creamy vinaigrette (Blend 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil, 3 tablespoons of white wine vinegar, 3 tablespoons of soft tofu, 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard, 1 chopped shallot, salt, and black pepper.)
  • Avocado vinaigrette: Blend 1/4 cup of lime juice, 1/2 of an avocado, 1 teaspoon minced garlic, salt, and black pepper.
  • Yogurt sauce: Blend 1 cup yogurt, 1 teaspoon minced garlic, salt, and freshly ground black pepper. Thin with olive oil and lemon juice. (Variation – Nutty yogurt sauce: Whisk in up to 1/4 cup of your favorite nut butter to the yogurt mixture. Thin with olive oil, rice vinegar, and honey.)

For more information, visit:

Image courtesy of ne* via a Creative Commons license.

Kits make growing microgreens easy

Keep up with the latest sustainable food news by signing up for our free newsletter. CLICK HERE to sign up!

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

About the Author

I'm an ecologist turned journalist turned farmer-in-training. I'm currently working on an organic farm and creamery in Illinois. Follow me on twitter (, friend me on Facebook (!/profile.php?id=3105709), or follow me on StumbleUpon (

Back to Top ↑
  • Let’s Connect!

  • Advertisements

  • Popular Posts & Pages

    Whether you are looking to completely give up animal products or just want to try eating vegan some of the time, we want to support you! Below, you’ll find articles answering some common questions about vegan cooking and nutrition. If you don’t see your question answered below, please get in touch with us! We are happy to investigate for you!

    Find out what's in season now, plus get plenty of recipe inspiration to help you make the most of every season's beautiful, local fare.

    I love infographics. When I came across this one about what, how, and when to plant vegetables, I thought I’d share. Keep reading after the pic for a few of my own lessons learned.

    Putting a healthy meal together can be difficult on a busy weeknight. These quick, easy, healthy meals make even weeknight cooking a breeze.

    Looking for an all vegan grocery store? Even if you’re not lucky enough to have one in your town, there are lots of online options for vegan grocery shopping.

  • Advertisements

  • Search the IM Network

  • The content produced by this site is for entertainment purposes only. Opinions and comments published on this site may not be sanctioned by, and do not necessarily represent the views of Sustainable Enterprises Media, Inc., its owners, sponsors, affiliates, or subsidiaries.