There’s something magical about briny, tangy sea veggies. These marine greens are full of vitamins and important minerals, including iodine, essential for thyroid support. Plus, they don’t require added chemicals, fertilizers or fresh water to grow, so they’re a low-impact crop, too. Here are four nutrient-rich varieties to try, and surefire vegan recipes they shine in.
Love sushi? Then you’re familiar with the paper-thin seaweed sheets that surround rice and fish. Filled with calcium and iron, nori is available in our macrobiotic foods section. Branch outside sushi by crumbling nori over salads and rice.
Try it in: Nori and Kale Salad
A type of kelp, this subtly salty and sweet sea vegetable imparts umami flavor. Add a 4- to 6-inch strip of kombu to a pot of cooking beans to make them more digestible—kombu’s amino acids break down gas-producing sugars in beans. Also add to stews or slow cookers to boost flavor.
This red seaweed hails from the British Isles and grows wild on the North Atlantic and Pacific coasts. There’s a reason vegan restaurants incorporate dulse into “DLTs,” which contain dulse, lettuce and tomato—when pan-fried, dulse acquires a smoky, savory flavor, similar to bacon.
Try it in: Dulse Chowder
This bright-green seaweed is often added to salads, along with sesame oil and chile flakes. Try toasting this sea veggie—available in both fresh and dried forms—and add it to omelets or soups for extra brininess.
Try it in: Wakame, Noodle and Cucumber Salad