How to Grow Amaranth Microgreens – Vibrant & Unique

Amaranth is one of the most vibrant and beautiful microgreens you can grow. Besides its striking red color, the taste is unique, and a small amount in a dish adds a layer of flavor.

We will show you how to grow amaranth microgreens in a few easy to follow steps.

red garnet amaranth microgreens

How to Grow Amaranth Microgreens

Amaranth is used not only as a microgreen but as a garden flower and also as a grain. There are many species of amaranth and even more cultivars. As a microgreen, the most commonly used amaranth cultivar is called Red Garnet.

This cultivar can also be grown in the garden, it has clumps of fuzzy reddish-purple flowers that are very beautiful. They remind me of the annual flowering plant celosia. 

red garnet amaranth flowers

As microgreens, amaranth is easy to grow. If you follow a few easy steps outlined below, you’ll be eating amaranth microgreens within ten days.

This article will outline the steps to grow this vibrant microgreen and discuss the nutritional value of amaranth. 

how to grow red garnet amaranth

Advantages to Amaranth Microgreens

home microgreens sells seeds

FREE Home Microgreens Grow course that teaches you the basics of growing microgreens in your home! There are 12 video lessons (over 120 minutes), downloads, and more written information and tips!

Besides the beautiful red color, amaranth microgreens are very nutritious. The nutrition of these microgreens is discussed later in this article. 

Click this link if you want to skip down to the nutrition section.

Growing Red Garnet Amaranth Microgreens

Also, if you’re looking for an Amaranth microgreen kit or Red Garnet Amaranth seed click the highlighted links to visit the Home Microgreen Store.

Even though amaranth microgreens are so easy to grow, they’re not often recommended as such or offered in beginners microgreen kits.

However, they’re an excellent variety for first-time growers to sow, raise, and harvest if the following two tips are kept in mind.

  1. Amaranth likes warm temperatures, so if your growing area is on the cold side (below 72 degrees) increase the heat or place the growing tray on a seed heat mat.
  2. The second tip is to not over-water amaranth as it grows; it is susceptible to fungus growth.

Growing Amaranth in Ten Easy Steps

Below is a list of the ten steps to growing amaranth microgreens. For a more detailed explanation and to see a video of each step, take a look at Growing Microgreens for the First Time.

Here are the steps using the Home Microgreen Kit. If you don’t have the kit, the photos will show you what supplies you need to grow microgreens.

Note: Some images below are of the beta Home Microgreens Trays (opaque trays & red lids). The black trays and opaque lids are the new Home Microgreens Trays. Both are similar-sized, but the latter uses much less soil and is more economical.

Step 1

Some people grow all of their microgreens on jute fiber mats. We believe premium potting (soilless) mixes are a better choice, even if using soil is a pain.

Read this article on why we believe it’s better to grow in soil

Add a premium potting mix to the planting tray. A planting tray needs small holes in the bottom so water can be drawn up from below instead of top watering once the greens have germinated.

The soil should be firmly compacted and level just below the top of the tray. 

how to grow radish microgreens

Step 2

Use a spray bottle to wet the soil surface with un-chlorinated water. Allow the water to soak into the soil, then respray the surface. If you see depressions or high spots on the soil, use your fingers to level the surface.

growing radish microgreens spraying the soil

Step 3

The variety of amaranth we grow and sell is called Red Garnet Amaranth.

The seeds are small and round, so you’ll need to take care when you handle them. Otherwise, you’ll be chasing them around the planting table. 

Add your amaranth seeds to a shaker bottle. A shaker bottle will allow you to spread the seeds more evenly. There are between 37,000 to 38,000 amaranth seeds in an ounce. That’s between 1,300 and 1,350 seeds per gram.

For amaranth, you want to plant about 38 seeds per square inch. So if your planting tray surface is 37.5 square inches, add 1.1 grams of Red Garnet Amaranth seeds to your shaker bottle.

Below is a photo of 1.1-grams amaranth microgreen seeds, or about a quarter of a teaspoon. So as you can see, amaranth seeds are tiny as there are over 1,350 seeds in that volume.

If you’re growing microgreens in your own tray, check out our handy Microgreen Seed Calculator!

red garnet amaranth seeds

Step 4

Now that the soil surface is prepared and the seeds are in the shaker bottle, it’s time to sow them.

Start sprinkling seeds onto the soil in concentric circles around the planting tray. It’s helpful to hold your spare hand around the tray so seeds don’t bounce out. Especially with amaranth seeds, as they are hard, round, and easily bounce off the soil.

You may need to unscrew the top off the sprinkler bottle to get the last few seeds out. Once all the seeds are out of the bottle, use your finger to spread clumps of seeds to areas with fewer seeds. Spread the seeds as evenly as possible across the surface.

Don’t worry if the seeds aren’t perfectly spaced. The seeds will grow, and the plants will spread out to fill the voids.

how to grow amaranth

It may seem that the seeds could be sown more densely. However, we’ve run trials, and more seeds increase the probability of disease in amaranth.

Amaranth stems are soft and tender and seem prone to attack. In later photos, you’ll see that the plant density in the trays is excellent.

Step 5

Now it’s time to prepare the seeds to germinate. Use the spray bottle and wet the seeds. Go easy, or the seeds will fly out of the tray. The water will also help settle the seeds into the soil.

Place the planting tray inside the watering tray. A watering tray does not have holes and will hold water. Use a similar-size tray, like in the Home Microgreen Kit, or use a larger tray.

Place a cover on the seeds (don’t seal the tray tight); if the cover is transparent or opaque, use a tea towel or cut a piece of cardboard to fit the cover to keep light off the seeds. The tea towel is removed from the tray below.

Most microgreens can be left on the soil surface, but they need to be covered to keep light off them while they germinate (we tested this, read why it’s important to blackout and weigh down seed by clicking this link).

Place a weight on top; this keeps the cover on and encourages the plants to root into the soil media. Below we’ve used a fossil. Now, we use 2-1/2 pound weights! Don’t worry; the growing plants are vigorous and will lift the cover and the weight as they grow.


Step 6

Don’t do anything for two days. Just let the seeds germinate and grow. The cover will retain enough moisture for the seeds to grow.

Step 7

Look at the seeds on day 2 (late in the day). You’ll see that germination has occurred, and the amaranth seedlings are growing!

Check the moisture of the tray; it should be okay, but make sure by checking the color of the soil media. A light brown color suggests that the media and seeds should be sprayed lightly with the spray bottle.

If the amaranth seedlings are smaller than the ones below, check the soil surface to see if it is dry. If so, use the spray bottle, wet the surface again, and place the cover back on the tray.

Let the plants grow for another day before checking on them again.

The amaranth seedlings in the photo below are ready to be placed under the lights. The germination rate is reasonable, and the plants are rooted and ready to leaf out.  


Here’s a close-up.

close-up-of amaranth

The white fibers are root hairs, not fungus.

Step 8

When the plants are ready, remove the cover and place the tray under an LED light

Now that the amaranth microgreens have germinated, started to root, and are growing, it’s time to get them under some light. There’s a lot of discussion about what light is best for microgreens. I think it’s best to give them as much light as possible.

After all, light is where the plants get their energy to grow. Give them as much as you can, whether it be sunlight, cheap LED lighting, or a special grow light. Don’t fret over it; do your best with what you have.

If the plants look white or pinkish, don’t worry; once they receive light, they will turn darker rose red.

Some growers mention that Red Garnet Amaranth microgreens don’t require a lot of light; however, as you’ll see in the photo below, the red color is more intense when more light hits the leaves.

color variation on red garnet amaranth

Red Garnet Amaranth tends to have a redder color, where more light hits the leaves. The tray’s right side was outside the light range, and the leaves are more green.

Step 9

Let the amaranth microgreens grow and give them water from the bottom. Here’s where the watering tray comes into play. Memorize how the weight of the dry tray feels. You’ll know when to water again by judging the weight this way.

Add water to the watering tray, a quarter of an inch works at first. Set the planting tray in the water and allow it to absorb the water from below. Watering from the bottom keeps the leaves and stems dry, eliminating the possibility of damping-off disease and stopping soil from splashing up on the plants.

The first time you water, you may have to add more water because the majority of the soil in the tray is dry. Afterward, you won’t need to add as much water.

Every other day check the weight of the tray to see if it needs water. The need will depend on the humidity and amount of air moving across the tray.

growing radish microgreens watering

Once under the light, the amaranth microgreens will stand straight up and grow steadily, but not quickly. The microgreens below are six days old.

amaranth microgreens after 6 days

Step 10

After 9- to 14 days, the amaranth microgreens will be around 3 inches tall and are ready to harvest.

The amaranth plants in the photo below grew for 16 days.

To harvest, tip the tray about 45 degrees over a cutting board or a large plate using stainless steel scissors or a very sharp knife cut the microgreens just above the soil surface.

Try not to disturb the soil. If some soil does spill, it’s okay. Use your hands to fluff the cut microgreens; the soil particles will fall to the board or plate, where you can wipe them off.

It’s always recommended to wash microgreens before using them to ensure no bacteria are on them.

Only cut what you’re going to use that day. Replace the growing tray under the light and let them grow so more.

If you can’t use all of your amaranth microgreens before they grow too tall and leggy, cut them and place them in a zip-lock bag with several small slits cut in the bag. Don’t wash the microgreens at this point.

You want them dry, as they will stay fresher longer. Squeeze the air from the bag and store the microgreens in the refrigerator crisper. We also have written this article on increasing the shelf life of microgreens after you have harvested them.

red garnet amaranth microgreens mature

Simple Right?

That’s all there is to growing amaranth microgreens. If you have any questions, feel free to ask in the comment section below the article. I’ll get right back to you.

Amaranth Microgreen Nutrition & Flavor

Nutritionally, amaranth microgreens are well-balanced with higher levels of Vitamin A, B’s, C, and K. It also contains moderate protein.

As for minerals, amaranth contains calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, and zinc. It’s also reported that amaranth has more antioxidants than kale microgreens.

Not only are amaranth microgreens healthy for you, but the grain also is, and many health benefits are reported.

You can download a chart presenting the vitamins and minerals for the most commonly grown microgreens by clicking the button below.

How to Use Amaranth Microgreens

Amaranth microgreens taste sweet with an earthy flavor, and they have a soft texture. They add a unique flavor profile to food.

The vibrant pink-to red-color makes Amaranth a favorite with chefs. A small amount of amaranth adds both color and flavor to salads.

We use amaranth microgreens mostly in salads and egg dishes. Their soft texture doesn’t make them very useful as toppings for sandwiches.

Interested in Growing Amaranth Microgreens?

If you’d like to try growing your amaranth microgreens at home, use the buttons below to look at the kit or if you have the supplies, the amaranth microgreen seeds.

Have a Question?

If you have any questions about the information in this post or microgreens, please comment below or reach out to me using the Ask a Question page

Pin this image to your Pinterest boards.

how to grow amaranth microgreens


  • Todd

    Todd is the founder of Home Microgreens & the Home Microgreens store. He also writes for several other websites, including MyViewFromTheWoods.com. Todd worked at a large farm market, garden & nursery center for 20 years. Somehow he snuck off to become a geologist and professor before coming back to his senses to write & lecture about microgreens and gardening. When not at the computer, he can be found in the garden, trout stream, or mountain trail with his new Springer Spaniel Caden.

    View all posts
Shopping Cart
Scroll to Top