5 vegetable “leftovers” you often throw away, some are more nutritious than what you keep!

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A few days ago, my colleagues were amazed by the first time I ate garlic and sweet potato leaves. It turned out that the discarded vegetable scraps were so delicious. I used to resist so much, just like some foreigners. Don’t eat offal…

So today we are going to talk about five common vegetable scraps ——

1. Sweet potato leaves

2. Celery leaves

3. Radish leaves

4. Lettuce leaves

5. Eggplant skin

Their nutrition is no less than what is left over! Some have found the right processing method, and the taste is not as unacceptable as imagined~


Sweet potato leaves

Sweet potato leaves, also known as sweet potato leaves, are leaves on the stems of sweet potatoes, a typical dark green vegetable (which is fed to pigs in many regions). Sweet potatoes are delicious and filling. They have helped people all over the world to survive the famine period. The leaves of sweet potatoes are also not bad and have high nutritional value.

Nutrition Comparison

Sweet potatoes are rich in nutrients such as beta-carotene, vitamins (especially vitamin C, folic acid and vitamin B6), minerals (calcium, potassium), polyphenols and Probably more antioxidants than most leafy greens. [1]

Sweet potato leaves are very advantageous in terms of dietary fiber, vitamins and protein content. According to the test of the Chinese Academy of Preventive Medicine, sweet potato leaves are better than spinach, leek, cabbage, cabbage, rape and other vegetables in 12 nutrients such as protein, calcium, phosphorus, iron, and vitamin C. Among them, the protein content Can even chase milk. [2]

Data source, reference [2]

Related dishes

Garlic Sweet Potato Leaves: Wash the sweet potato leaves and remove the hard stems. Pour oil in a hot wok, fry minced garlic in the wok until fragrant, add sweet potato leaves and stir fry, add a little salt and fry until cooked.

The picture comes from the lower kitchen & the robot cat girl

In addition, there are sweet potato leaves mixed with vermicelli, steamed sweet potato leaves, and sweet potato leaf nests, which are also easy and delicious to make.


Celery leaves

Celery leaves are often discarded when choosing vegetables (zhái cài, removing the inedible parts of vegetables), and in the eyes of most people they are leftovers. The reason for picking it is because the flavor is too prominent, and the stems and leaves the time required for frying is too different, when the celery stems are cooked, the leaves are dehydrated and wilted . But this doesn’t mean that celery leaves can’t be eaten, it is not only edible, but also very nutritious!

Nutrition Comparison

The vitamin E, vitamin B2, and vitamin C of celery leaves are more than twice that of stems, and carotene is more abundant in stems 8 times more.

Even if it is placed in various vegetables, the content of carotene, vitamin B1, B2, niacin, magnesium, selenium, and insoluble dietary fiber in celery leaves is also among the best. Potassium isn’t bad either.

However, celery stalks have an advantage in some mineral content.

Data source: Chinese food composition table

Related dishes

The next time you buy celery, you can separate the stems and leaves. The leaves are used for scrambled eggs or blanched in water and then mixed with cold water. The stems are used for fried fragrant dried or mixed with peanuts. Another delicious dish!

You can also try chopped and spread into vegetable egg pancakes, the taste is still good.


Radish leaves

There are many types of radishes. There are thousands of vegetables belonging to the cruciferous family in our country. The common ones are carrots, green radishes, white radishes, heart radishes, etc., containing

strong>It is high in water and low in calories, while dietary fiber, magnesium, and vitamins are high in content. Compared with its price, it is really a very cost-effective food.

It’s already such an excellent vegetable, so don’t let it use its own leaves and roots to compare and roll in. The nutrition below compares it with the Internet celebrity vegetable – kale.

Nutrition Comparison

Kale VS Radish Leaf: One of the nutritional features of kale is its high content of carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin. Inferior at the same time, better at low calcium, iron, calorie!

Kale VS radish: Kale also contains phytochemicals such as glucosinolates and phenolic compounds, and the extracts of these substances have been tested in vitro and Animal experiments have shown effects such as fighting free radicals, reducing oxidative stress, inhibiting the growth of cancer cells, and improving blood lipids, which have potential protective effects on cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes. [3] But all cruciferous vegetables are rich in these phytochemicals, including our turnips.

Related dishes

Fried radish leaves, radish leaves buns, scrambled eggs with radish leaves.


Lettuce leaves

Now is the time to eat lettuce, cold or stir-fried lettuce, appetizing and delicious. People usually only eat the stems of lettuce, which may be because many of my friends don’t know that – the discarded lettuce leaves are much more nutritious than lettuce!

Nutrition Comparison

The carotene, vitamin B2, and vitamin C in the leaves of lettuce are several times that of the stem, but the potassium of lettuce The content is higher, reaching 212mg, which is a bit close to bananas.

Data source: Chinese food composition table

Related dishes

We recommend lettuce leaf rice! The method is very simple. In addition to the lettuce leaves and rice, add some oil, salt and chicken essence when steaming the rice.

Photo credit: Lower Kitchen & October Green Orange


Eggplant skin

Should I peel the eggplant or not? I believe this question has troubled some friends. Peeling it is troublesome. If you don’t peel it, you will worry about pesticide residues (the risk can be greatly reduced by cleaning it well) and affect the taste. And is the thin layer of eggplant skin nutritious?

Nutrition Comparison

The water content of eggplant is as high as 91%-93%, and only less than 10% of the “dry food”, eating a pound (500g) is only about 125kcal, which is similar to the calories of an ordinary apple. Eggplant is rich in phenols and alkaloids and has certain health benefits, and there are many studies on the health benefits of eggplant.

The content of phenols and other substances with health benefits in the eggplant peel is indeed much higher than that of the eggplant pulp[4], and the purple eggplant peel also contains a lot of anthocyanins. If you don’t hate the taste of eggplant skin, it is recommended to eat it with the skin on.

But if you just don’t want to eat the eggplant skin, it’s okay to peel it off. After all, the eggplant skin is only a thin layer, and the content of health-care substances in it will not have a big impact.

Which vegetable scraps have you eaten?


[1] Bovell‐Benjamin, Adelia C. “Sweet potato: a review of its past, present, and future role in human nutrition.” Advances in food and nutrition research 52 (2007) : 1-59.

[2] Xie Keying, Yang Qingying, Sun Ruilin, etc. Nutritional research on sweet potato leaves [J]. Henan Agriculture, 2015, (14): 37-38.

[3] Šamec, Dunja et al. “Kale (Brassica oleracea var. acephala) as a superfood: Review of the scientific evidence behind the statement.” Critical reviews in food science and nutrition vol . 59,15 (2019): 2411-2422. doi: 10.1080/10408398.2018.1454400

[4] Cai Ruyu. Extraction of active ingredients from eggplant peel, preparation of lozenges and preliminary study on hypoglycemic effect