Amaranth greens are just what they sound like: the leaves of the amaranth plant. You may have encountered the seed, which is rising in popularity as traditional whole grains become more mainstream.
The greens are very tasty, high in vitamins A and C and are a good source of minerals, including calcium, magnesium, iron and manganese.
Originally cultivated in Mexico, they are a common green across Asia and in some parts of Africa and the Caribbean (often referred to as "callaloo" there). They are a beautiful deep green streaked with red and purple and can be eaten raw when young and tender, but are traditionally cooked. The best cooking suggestion is to saute with garlic, but you can use it anywhere you would include cooked spinach or Swiss chard.
Amaranth greens are delicious with cumin, chile peppers or onions and hold up well to intensely spiced dishes like curry. Saute, mix into soups and stews or add to sauces for extra nutrition and texture.
Sauteed Amaranth Greens
- 1-2 tbsp olive oil or coconut oil
- 2 cloves garlic (the fresher the better)
- 1 bunch amaranth greens, washed
- The oil over medium heat
- Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Do not overcook as it will become bitter.
- Add the greens, stirring occasionally until wilted, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.