Looking for a Sunflower Shoots Recipe? Move over lettuce, sunflower shoots are the star of this crunchy, simple, and flavorful salad.
Sunflower shoots are not a “field crop.” They are not dosed with herbicides or grown with modified seeds. They are grown from the humble black-oil sunflower seed. They are grown so fast, herbicides are never needed. You don’t have to worry if sunflower shoots are full of toxic junk. Sunflower shoots are the ulimate clean eating salad green. Let’s make this sunflower shoots recipe!

What are sunflower shoots?

Sunflower shoots are very young sunflower plants, harvested two weeks or so after they are sown, when they have only two leaves. This stage of growth is called the microgreens stage. The stem and two young leaves are edible. When the third leaf begins to grow, the young plant becomes bitter and the leaves become rough and fuzzy.

What do they taste like?

Sunflower shoots are crunchy(ish) with a subtle nuttiness – similar to what a sunflower seed tastes like. They aren’t sweet, but more earthy. They don’t require a whole lot of chewing, but they aren’t a delicate baby lettuce either.

What are the health benefits of Sunflower Shoots?

Sunflower shoots pack a powerful nutritional punch. They’re an excellent source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, C, E, and K, as well as potassium, magnesium, and iron. They’re also low in calories and fat.

Sunflower shoots were a best seller at my Farmer’s Market Booth

A photo of some sunflower shoots I sold at farmer’s markets back when

Where do I get Sunflower Shoots?

Sunflower shoots can be hard to find. If you have a farmer’s market closeby, go there first. Support your local microgreens grower and get the freshest possible shoots. If not, look for a grocery store that specializes in health foods, like Whole Foods. Or just grow them yourself. It takes about two weeks from start to finish to grow a crop of sunflower shoots.

  • Farmer’s market

  • Health food grocery store

  • Grow them yourself


Sunflower Shoots Salad with Orange

*A note on cost: Sunflower shoots are the base of this salad. If you grow them yourself, you’ll have plenty to make a salad just out of sunflower shoots alone. If you are buying them at a store, the price might be too high to create a salad of just sunflower shoots. Feel free to bulk up the salad with another mild-tasting lettuce and use as many sunflower shoots as you can.

On to the recipe. This salad is not your same run-of-the-mill dinner salad.

Serves 2

  • 3 cups Sunflower Shoots, rinsed and spun dry

  • 1/4 cup Lemon Viniagrette (or other olive oil based dressing)

  • 1 tablespoon sunflower seeds

  • 1 orange, peeled and segmented into wedges

  • 1/8 cup Radish microgreens, or 1 thinly sliced radishes

  • 8 Cherry Tomatoes, sliced in half

  • Freshly ground black pepper


Toss all ingredients together in a bowl. Adjust with salt and pepper. Eat and enjoy.

Simple Salad with Sunflower Shoots Recipe Add-Ins

Feel free to add more to your sunflower shoots salad. The radish gives the salad a lovely bit of spice, playing well with the sweet orange wedges. But here are more great ingredients to add to your salad.

  • Croutons: Who doesn’t love a crunch

  • Smoked Fish: smoked salmon (or the smoked trout from Trader Joes!)

  • Microgreens Mix: The easiest way to add a variety of veggies without all the chopping, is to add a microgreens salad mix. Ususally mixes come with at least 5 different microgreens. That’s five different varieties of veggies in one handful.

  • Jicama: I love adding cubes of jicama to this salad. Jicama is so crunchy and freshing, it is a delight.

  • Fried Shallots: Another cruchy that adds a layer of flavor.

  • Shredded Carrots: Shredded carrots are also lovely and crunchy

Simple Sunflower Shoots Salad Recipe (With Citrus)

Move over lettuce, sunflower shoots are the star of this crunchy, simple, and flavorful salad with citrus.


Sunflower Shoots Salad Add-Ins


  1. Toss all ingredients together in a bowl.
  2. Adjust with salt and pepper.
  3. Eat and enjoy.

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Quantum Microrgeens is your guide to living well inside & out. This website is all about clean(ish) recipes, living tips and everything microgreens. We're Melissa & Kelly, two sisters living in California and Connecticut, on a mission


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