Kale has been the shining star of leafy green vegetables for long enough. As much as we love it, it can be beneficial to switch up our green veggies with other nutritional powerhouses. Below are five greens that may not be as famous as kale, but definitely deserve more attention.
4 Leafy Greens to Try That Aren’t Kale:
1) Swiss Chard
Swiss chard is not only beautiful to look at, but is packed with vitamins K, A, and C. It also contains phytonutrients, which helps with antioxidant support. Swiss chard is an ideal green for sauteing or roasting and can be cooked with olive oil and garlic for a simple side dish.
Recipe: Roasted Swiss Chard
- 4 cups swiss chard
- 3 tbs olive oil
- 2 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp salt
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Mix all of the ingredients until the swiss chard is thoroughly coated with the olive oil and spices. Bake until crispy but not brown, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
2) Mustard Greens
Mustard greens, known for their peppery taste, are also packed with vitamins K, A, and C and can also play a role in natural liver detoxification. They’re thick like collard greens and can be used in hearty recipes or make a great low-carb wrap. High levels of fiber found in mustard greens are beneficial for healthy digestion, consistent blood sugar, and more.
Recipe: Chicken Salad Wrap with Mustard Greens
- ½ cup fat-free plain Greek yogurt
- ¼ cup chopped grapes
- ¼ cup slivered almonds or walnuts
- ¼ cup chopped onions
- 1 cup pulled chicken
- 2 tsp salt
- 3-4 mustard greens
In a bowl, combine all of the ingredients except the mustard greens and mix well. Put a small scoop of chicken salad onto each mustard green, along with any toppings of choice (tomatoes, pickles, etc.) and roll the green tightly to serve and eat.
Watercress is typically used as a garnish for meals. However, it’s loaded with nutritional benefits and is very low in calories. Like the other greens, watercress contains high levels of vitamins and minerals. These vitamins and minerals may help fight off cancer-causing chemicals and lower blood pressure. To cook with watercress, try adding some to a salad, throwing it into smoothies, or saute it.
Recipe: Avocado, Peach, & Watercress Salad
- 6 cups watercress
- 1 avocado
- 2 peaches
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 3 tbs lemon juice
Chop the avocado and peaches into small chunks. In a bowl, combine the peaches and avocado with the watercress. Whisk together the olive oil and lemon juice and drizzle it over the salad. Toss well to coat.
4) Beet Greens
The next time you cook beets, don’t toss the stems! Instead, chop them up and saute or roast them. Beet greens contain high amounts of zinc, protein, and fiber making them an easy source for a variety of nutrients. If you’re left with too many beet greens, you can always freeze them and use them in the future.
Recipe: Sauteéd Beet Greens
- 1 bunch beets
- 3-4 tbs olive oil
- 1 tbs crushed garlic
- Salt and pepper to taste
Heat the olive oil and garlic in a pan over medium heat. Remove the greens from the beets and wash thoroughly. Set the beets aside for later use.
Chop the beet greens into small chunks and add to the olive oil and garlic. Add a sprinkle of salt and pepper and sauté until soft, about 3 minutes. Serve hot.