It’s no secret we’re a sucker for our ingredients. Why else would we put so much care into making sure our sauces are only built from the good stuff? Ingredients don’t just stop there though, and if you’re looking for outstanding taste in an inexpensive way—you might want to look into starting a garden of your own. For some, a garden may be too intense but today we’re going to teach you about 5 vegetables that you can easily regrow at home from things you probably already have in the fridge. All you need? A little bit of water and sunlight.
Here are five vegetables that only need one week of water and sunshine to regrow to a point where you can use them. You should change the water when it gets cloudy or low, but otherwise, this method requires barely any effort. Just chop, regrow, eat, repeat.
Reserve about 3 inches of the butt of the lettuce. Place, bottom down, in a cozy mug or bowl that will allow the lettuce to lean without falling over, will hold enough water to cover the bottom half of the lettuce, and will allow sunlight to reach the lettuce. Fill with water until the bottom half is submerged. Put the container in a sunny window. You should see growth by the next day, and you may even have enough to cook with in one week. Bok choy can be regrown similarly!
Chop off the green top of the scallion, using it however you’d like, but leave about an inch of the white bottom in tact. Put the stubs in a narrow drinking glass or shot glass so the scallions can lean without falling over. Make sure the container you choose is clear, allowing the sun to reach the scallion roots. Fill the glass with a bit of water, and place the container in a sunny spot. You should see some exciting growth after a couple of days. Once planted, you can depend on these things to produce for years afterwards so you’ll never be without a tasty, fresh green onion.
Fennel has such a strong taste that you don’t need more than a few snips of fronds from the bulb to add to salads, dressings and stocks. Therefore, keeping a bulb on-hand in your kitchen windowsill works perfectly. Place the bulb in a mug or bowl that can hold enough water to cover the bottom half of the bulb while still allowing light to hit it. Fill with an inch or so of water. After one week in a sunny spot, green shoots will sprout from the top.
Reserve the tops of carrots and regrow greens from them. Just chop off the tops of the carrots, leaving about half an inch or inch of the top. Place in a shallow container, add water, and put in a sunny spot. After a week, you should see some strong carrot greens. And just a note, all members of the turnip family (beets, turnips, parsnips) can regrow their greens this way, not just carrots.
Don’t toss out those celery scraps! You can use them to regrow your own stalks in water, and then ultimately plant them in soil. Cut about 2 inches above the root base of the celery and place the root in a shallow bowl filled with water and put it in sunlight. After about a week, you should see little leaves beginning to sprout from the middle!
Other vegetables that can be easily regrown with a bit more time:
You need just one clove of garlic (seriously!) to start growing garlic scapes at home—their taste is mild and sweet, and they make a great addition to aioli, scrambled eggs, and more.
Cut a few inches above the bottom of stem and submerge them in a glass filled with about an inch of water. Leave in a sunny spot (adding more water as needed), and in roughly 2-3 weeks it should start growing roots.
If you’ve got a few basil leaves on hand, then you can regrow yourself a fresh, new bunch! Just place a few clippings in a glass filled with water, put it in sunlight, and once the roots grow to about 2 inches, you can plant them in soil.
This post was originally published on Food52.