Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

Oh, Those Gorgeous Greens!

Going “green” is groovy! Leafy greens offer a wide assortment of nutrients and they taste great. Their popularity is spreading like wildfire, so add a new green to your menu today. Here’s a list to work your way through:

  • KaleCollards
  • Kale
  • Bok Choy
  • Broccoli Rabe
  • Napa cabbage
  • Dandelion
  • Swiss chard
  • Mustards
  • Beet greens and turnip greens
  • Spinach
  • Watercress
  • Arugula
  • Lettuce varieties

Lettuce, chard and spinach are mild in flavor while other greens — like arugula, dandelion and mustards — are sharp, peppery and bitter. Choose the flavor you desire when adding to soups, salads, sides and main dishes. Here’s how to glorify your menu with greens:

  • Steam or sauté in a little oil, broth or butter until bright green and tender; don’t boil in water as you’ll lose valuable nutrients. 
  • Add to soups, stir-fries and stews. 
  • Steam or sauté and add to whole grain side dishes. Try collards with couscous and kale with brown rice, or spinach with pasta and chard with quinoa.
  • Toss baby spinach, arugula, watercress or dandelion with hot cooked pasta. Add tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, etc.
  • Use steamed greens as a bed for other colorful veggies such as cooked butternut squash, roasted root veggies, braised carrots or sautéed bell peppers. 
  • Add a few leaves of kale or spinach to your favorite fruit or veggies when juicing.
  • Make smoothies with greens. Frozen makes this simple.
  • Slice spinach, cabbage and kale thinly. Dress with favorite salad dressing.
  • Eat sautéed greens with tofu or eggs.

Greens are often interchangeable in your recipes. If mustard greens are too bitter for you, switch to kale. Don’t like tough stems? Try chard (you can eat their stems). Mature greens often taste better and are more digestible when cooked. Others, like spinach, dandelion and kale can be eaten either cooked or raw. Micro greens and baby greens are delicious raw.  Enjoy these recipes:

This Introduction to Kale 101 video showcases local farmers as well as the king of greens.

Remember, the next time someone asks you if you’re going green, all you have to say is, “kale, yeah!”

Got a favorite green you can’t go without?  Let me know.

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Bianca says …

It's really amazing how many recipes Americans have for kale. Kale is a very popular winter meal in Northern Germany where I live, but it only is served cooked, with potatoes, smoked pork chop and sausages. According to our regional tradition, we only eat kale when temperatures are low, so it only is served from November to March. That's why most stores overe here don't even sell kale during spring and summer. Kale season in Northern Germany is celebrated by organizing tours: Friends reserve a table at a restaurant and hike there. On their way, they play funny outdoor games and drink lots of liquor. The person who eats the biggest kale portion at the restaurant becomes Kale Queen or King. Every majesty has to organize next year's kale tour for their friends. Since I'm very curious how other kale versions taste, I definitely will try one of your recipes.

gin says …


carmandjer says …

We've started juicing and we add kale in by the hands full! The kids think our green juice is a little crazy, but we are loving it. I've been looking for more ways to use greens, and I'm happy to try some of yours.

City Girl Gardener says …

My most recent green dish is serving eggs with sautéed veggies such as kale, spinach, mustard spinach, chard, boy choy, onions, bell pepper, banana peppers, a small jalapeno pepper, all bunched and chopped. After sautéing the veggies, I add the eggs, and just before finishing the dish, I add tomato chunks and chopped parsley while the dish is hot. The eggs are great, even my grandson likes them. I am a gardener and always looking for ways to use my harvest.

Cate Allard says …

I'd like to know how to make the broccoli crunch that is served at the Kahala store's deli- please ;)

sandia garcia says …

i love all the recipe

Nikki - Community Moderator says …

@CATE - We do not have that recipe on our national site which means it's probably an amazing creation by a region or team member. Check with the store directly where you tried it as they will share a recipe if they have one!

Kyle Welch says …

Kale butter is awesome

lynda boriskin says …

THANK YOU, THANK YOU for making your "Crunchy Kale Salad so deloiusous, the lemon, cranberries, pinenuts are outstanding and whatever else I left out. Whoever put it together has it going on, please thank him/her for helping me like KALE, I could eat it all day long.

Bennie Williams says …

Do you sell Bitter Mellon (karela)?

Nikki - Community Moderator says …

@BENNIE - Our products vary between locations so I would encourage you to reach out to your local store to see what they have in stock.

Sara says …

Hello please can you be a help to me, I am searching for Fresh Seaweed'' so I can prepare a Seaweed salad do you have Fresh Seaweed at Wholefood store. I have been to Trader Joes and they do not carry Fresh Seaweed . Sara

Nikki - Community Moderator says …

@SARA - Great question. I have not seen fresh seaweed at my local store, however, since our products vary between locations, I would encourage you to reach out to your local store. I have seen a Nori seaweed option for sushi and an already prepared seaweed salad in our sushi department. If your store does not sell it fresh, I would suggest checking with an Asian market in your area.

Dr. Renee' L. Taylor says …

I'm looking for lu`au leaves in Baltimore, MD

Nikki - Community Moderator says …

@DR. RENEE - Since we have a few locations in the Boston area, I would suggest calling the exact store location where you plan to shop. They will be able to let you know what they have in stock! Find a list of the stores at http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/stores/list.