Are carrot tops edible?
Actually, carrot leaves are edible. Most noteworthy, they have a superior nutritional value. You can eat them raw or cooked. However, you should avoid eating carrot greens if you have:
- carrot allergy or intolerance
- a hard time to find organic carrot greens
Eat organic carrot leaves
Carrots are heavily treated with pesticides. Therefore, carrot greens are most likely to have pesticide residues. Therefore, you should avoid eating non-organic carrot greens.
Also, you could eat the organic carrot root with the skin. Unpeeled carrots are healthier. The skin of all vegetables and fruits is the richest part in nutrients.
Actually, the carrot root as well carrot tops have compounds that promote weight loss.
Nutritional value & health benefits of carrot leaves
Carrot leaves are rich in many nutrients, such as vitamin C, beta-carotene and dietary fiber. Moreover, carrot greens contain high amounts of many minerals. For instance, they contain phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, manganese, zinc and iron (1).
Furthermore, carrot greens contain no sugar.
Carrot greens are good sources of omega-3s
Carrot leaves are among the richest plant-based sources of omega-3 fatty acids. In fact, they contain about 1.16 grams of omega-3s per 100g. Eating lots of foods high in omega-3s is vital for good health. Modern Western diets are low in omega-3s, causing inflammation and obesity (2).
Carrot greens are high in vitamin C
Additionally, carrot greens are particularly high in vitamin C. They contain about 203 mg of vitamin C per 100g. Certainly, carrot greens are among the best dietary sources of vitamin C. In comparison, orange juice has only 34 mg of vitamin C per 100g (3).
Eating carrot leaves is good for your eyesight
Carrots are known for protecting the eyesight, mainly due to their high content of vitamin A and carotenoids. Carrot leaves contain moderate amounts of carotenoids as well. They contain about 8.7 mg of beta-carotene per 100g (dry weight). In fact, only a few foods are richer in beta-carotene than carrots.
Protein in carrot tops
Moreover, carrot leaves are great plant-based sources of protein. Actually, they’re 15% protein. Even the carrot root contains some protein.
Therefore, carrot tops are ideal ingredients for a post-workout smoothie. Moreover, carrot leaves are high in antioxidants. They’ll help neutralize exercise-induced free radicals, promoting muscle recovery!
Carrot greens are high in dietary fiber
Additionally, carrot leaves are high in dietary fiber. They’re about 12% fiber (dry weight). The carrot root is also a good source of fiber. Carrots can help us meet our daily needs. A fiber-rich diet has been linked to a decreased risk of obesity.
Eat carrot tops to get chlorophyll
Moreover, carrot greens contain high amounts of chlorophyll. Eating foods high in chlorophyll is beneficial for the body. Chlorophyll boosts the immune system, helps the body to detox, and has anti-aging properties.
Eat carrot leaves for calcium
In addition, carrot greens are particularly high in calcium. They contain about 1,970 mg of calcium per 100g (dry weight). Actually, carrot tops are among the richest plant-based foods in calcium!
If carrot leaves are edible, why can’t I find them in stores?
Although, you can eat carrot greens, it’s really difficult to find them in supermarkets. Most people don’t consume carrot tops because they don’t know their nutritional value. Furthermore, carrot leaves draw moisture from the carrot root. Therefore, growers remove them. Cutting carrot tops increases the shelf life of the carrot root.
How to eat carrot leaves?
You can use carrot leaves in many recipes. You can eat them raw or cooked in smoothies, salads, soups, sauces, pies, and sandwiches. They have a bitter flavor.