Pak choi is a microgreen known by many names. Perhaps more recognizable as Chinese cabbage or bok choy, it’s a very easy microgreen to grow both in terms of the technique and its speed. You can get a fresh batch of pak choi microgreens every 10 days if you want, making it a great microgreen for beginners.
Chinese Cabbage / Pak Choi / Bok Choy Microgreens Quick Info
- Flavor: A more potent version of the larger bok choy / pak choi plant. Very robust.
- Soak – No
- Rinse / Drain – No
- Plant – 1-2 days
- Ideal Harvest – 8-12 days
I’ve filmed a full grow-along video below, but you can also follow the step-by-step guide with the materials list below — now let’s get to growing these greens!
Most of what you need to grow pak choi microgreens can be found laying around your house, but if you want to purchase supplies to grow in a more consistent and measured way, here’s what I use for my commercial-level production:
- Container (I use 10×20 plant growing trays)
- Potting soil (I use a 50/50 mix of organic potting soil and coconut coir)
- Light (I use a 4′ T5 CFL grow light if growing indoors)
- Seeds – we like the high-quality seeds from True Leaf Market
- Spray bottle
Fill your container up to just below the brim with your soil mixture and pack it down lightly. Don’t be too forceful or else your seeds’ roots will have a tough time penetrating the soil.
Then, use a spice shaker or some other tool to get as even a distribution of seed as possible. These two steps are important when it comes time to harvest. An even soil surface and even seed distribution make harvesting a much smoother process.
As for the amount of seed: I use around 1oz for a 10×20 tray, so use that as your starting point. If you’re growing in a smaller or larger container, just try to match the distribution of seed in the above picture.
Lightly mist your seeds after sowing and cover your container with something to prevent any light from hitting your seeds. This creates a more favorable environment for them to germinate. Pak choi germinates in 24-48 hours, so keep an eye on your plants in this time and check on their progress.
After germination, you should continue to keep them covered up until they start to shed their hulls and are at least 1″ tall. By letting them stretch a bit, you give yourself some wiggle room when harvesting.
Water well over the next week or so, making sure to inspect your crop for mold or fungus as well as dead patches. If you’re growing in the sun, you’ll need to water more frequently. You’ll need to water less often if you have a deep container (as I do in these pictures). The soil will retain more moisture, and your little plants’ roots don’t suck much up.
After about ten days, your pak choi microgreens are ready to be harvested. You can let them grow even longer to the true leaf stage, but that’s up to you. Your yield will increase, but the flavor profile starts to mellow out a bit. Try it out though, you may prefer it!
When harvesting, use a very sharp knife that slices straight through the stems. Aim for about 1/2″ above the soil line to avoid debris like soil or seed husks. Hold your container at an angle if you can so your greens fall straight into their final container.
You shouldn’t need to wash your pak choi micros if you harvest correctly and have no issues with mold or fungus. By not washing, you save yourself some precious time and also extend the shelf life of the greens.
Make sure they are completely dry when storing them. Place them in a sealed container in the fridge and they should last at least a week – but try to eat them while they’re fresh!