Want to cook with radish leaves but unsure how to get them clean? This step-by-step tutorial shows you how to cut, wash, dry, and store radish greens to cook them in your favorite meals. Reduce food waste with these simple steps!

washed radish leaves drying in a blue colander on a white table with a bunch of radishes

Do you want to use radish tops in cooking but you're not sure how to get them clean We've got you covered! Using the leaves of radishes in your favorite meals is a great way zero waste cooking technique, but getting them clean can be a challenge as they are naturally very dirty because radishes are a root vegetable.

👉 Here's how to wash radish greens for cooking:

  1. Cut the radish leaves and stems from the root, then remove the hard part of the stems
  2. Wash radish leaves in running water, or soak them in a bowl of water to remove dirt
  3. Lay the greens flat or hang them upside down to dry

Ready to learn how to prep radish tops for no-waste cooking? Let's do it!


🌱 How to wash radish greens (step-by-step photos)

1️⃣ Step One: Cut radish tops from the stem

The first step to using radish tops is to separate the top of the radish where the stem meets the radish root (the red or white part of the radish we typically eat).

Once you've removed the stems and leaves, simply cut the radish leaves from the longer stems. You can eat the stems as well, but they're usually quite tough. They can be saved after washing for flavoring soup stocks (similar to this Carrot Greens Broth recipe).

radish bulbs cut from the green radish stems and leaves on a white table
Cut radish leaves from the root

2️⃣ Step Two: Wash carrot greens (2 ways)

Once you've removed the leaves from the stem, wash the radish leaves. You can do this two ways:

  1. Clean them under running water, wiping dirt off with your hands.
  2. Place them in a bowl of water to let soak, then move them around with your hands lightly to remove excess dirt and debris.
radish greens in a bowl of water on a white table
Wash radish greens to remove dirt

3️⃣ Step Three: Dry radish leaves

After washing, lay the radish leaves flat to dry on a kitchen towel. This usually takes about 10 minutes. You can also bundle the leaves and hang them up to dry like herbs.

radish greens in a blue colander on a white table
Dry radish greens

🧊 How to store radish greens

There are two ways to store radish leaves to save them until you're ready to cook with them:

  1. Refrigerator method: Place leaves stem down in a glass filled with water and store up to 2-3 days. The water will keep the leaves hydrated until you're ready to use them.
  2. Freezer method: Wrap leaves in a damp kitchen towel and place them in an eco-friendly freezer bag and store them in the freezer for up to a month. To thaw, just remove from the freezer and thaw at room temperature. You may need to let them dry out a bit before using.
vinegar pickling brine pouring into a jar of radishes
Use extra radish greens in Quick Pickled Radishes

❓ Recipe questions + quick tips

Are radish greens poisonous?

Radish greens are not poisonous. They are edible and make a great addition to many dishes. You can treat them like any other green, adding them to dishes that call for leafy greens like spinach or chard, or for herbs like parsley or cilantro.

How do you keep radish greens fresh?

To keep radish leaves fresh after cutting them from the root, simply place the cut radish stems with leaves in a glass of water and store in the refrigerator for up to two days. The water will keep the leaves hydrated, however because the leaves of radishes are very fragile they will begin to wilt quickly so do not cut them unless you plan to use them within 1-2 days.

How do you store radish tops?

If you have more radish tops than you can use in a few days, you can store them in the fridge by rinsing them, drying them off completely, and placing the stems in a glass of water to keep them hydrated. To freeze radish greens, simply rinse and dry them, then store them in a freezer-friendly bag wrapped in a damp towel to keep them from developing freezer burn. Then thaw to room temperature before using.

a radish greens smoothie in a glass with a glass straw
Use radish leaves in a zero waste radish smoothie!

🥗 How to serve radish tops

Radish greens are an excellent green that can replace more common leafy greens like arugula, spinach, and chard. Here are a few of our favorite ideas:

How to Wash Radish Greens for Cooking

Want to cook with radish leaves but unsure how to get them clean? This step-by-step tutorial show you how to cut, wash, dry, ands store radish greens to cook them in your favorite meals. Reduce food waste with these simple steps!
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Ingredients

  • 1 bunch radishes, with leaves
  • 1 quart water
  • 1 large mixing bowl, optional, can use sink

Equipment

  • 1 colander
  • 1 large glass mixing bowl optional

Instructions 

  • Cut radish stems and leaves from the root: Separate the top of the radish where the stem meets the radish root (the red or white part of the radish we typically eat). Once you've removed the stems and leaves, simply cut the radish leaves from the longer stems.
  • Wash radish leaves (sink option): Once you've removed the leaves from the stem, wash the radish leaves under running water, wiping dirt off with your hands.
  • Wash radish leaves (bowl option): Place radish greens in a bowl of water to let soak (about 5 minutes), then move them around with your hands lightly to remove excess dirt and debris.
  • Dry radish greens: After washing, lay the radish leaves flat to dry on a kitchen towel. This usually takes about 10 minutes. You can also bundle the leaves and hang them up to dry like herbs.
  • Store radish greens (refrigerator method): Place leaves stem down in a glass filled with water and store up to 2-3 days. The water will keep the leaves hydrated until you're ready to use them.
  • Store radish greens (freezer method): Wrap leaves in a damp kitchen towel and place them in an eco-friendly freezer bag and store them in the freezer for up to a month. To thaw, just remove from the freezer and thaw at room temperature. You may need to let them dry out a bit before using.