Read This Before Throwing Away Cauliflower Leaves

That hardy head of cauliflower you get from the farmers' market or the supermarket may still have some of its light green leaves attached when you bring it home. It's even possible that if you shop local at the farmers' market, that the vendor may have kindly offered to snip them off. In fact, cutting these greens and placing them in the compost bin may be a common practice in your household as you start preparing this tasty, cruciferous vegetable for a main course or side dish.

But, you may want to hold off on tossing these green leaves starting now. Because the truth is they're an edible and delicious part of the plant. Like kale and broccoli, cauliflower happens to be part of the Brassica family (via Vox) that have this convenient trait in common. And while kale chips may be a common and unique way to use the leaves, as it turns out, you can also eat the tasty leftovers of your head of cauliflower, too.

There are a few ways to cook cauliflower leaves

The great news about consuming cauliflower leaves — other than ensuring no part goes to waste — is that they can be healthy for you. Like many lettuces, they're full of nutrients, such as a good load of fiber, vitamins A and C, and minerals including calcium, potassium, and selenium, according to Delish. While cauliflower itself is versatile and can be eaten roasted, steamed, sautéed, or even made into a soup, the leaves can be prepared in a myriad of ways as well. If you want to keep things simple, consider roasting them with some olive oil and salt, just like you would with kale, or toss with oil and lemon juice for a simple salad.

If you want to take things up a notch and get more creative, The Guardian recommends them "stir-fried with ginger and honey or fermented into a zero-waste cauliflower leaf and floret kimchi." Now, that sounds delicious and tempting — and a bit gourmet! The next time you are out buying cauliflower, look for a head with plenty of leaves still attached so you can maximize your creativity in the kitchen while also getting another healthy veggie into your diet.