Sauteed Daikon Greens with Onion, Garlic and Lemon

posted in: Recipes, vegetable | 18

If you are a lover of greens, you are in for a treat. Daikon greens are one of my favorites. They are tender, kind of like turnip greens, and have a mild flavor.

Daikon greens can be a little hard to come by. They are rarely sold in bunches like other greens. The most simple and common way is to find them still attached to the daikon radish root! However, a lot of grocers cut these fabulous greens off and only sell the radish. You may need to do a little sleuthing, but it’s worth it. My local natural food store sets the greens aside in the back because enough people come in asking for them. Often, if you get them this way, they’re free. Yay!

Look for greens that are bright green and perky. Green leaves that are starting to yellow or look wilted are too old and won’t have as much nutritional value or flavor as fresher ones.

I like to use as much of the plant as possible, so I cut the stems and throw them in. Often the stems are tender all the way to the root, but if the daikon is more mature this may not be the case. Use your best judgement on this. You can separate the stems from the leaves and cut them small. Add them in the beginning with the onions if you like to give them more cooking time. The stems add more nutrition to your dish than just the leaves. Minerals are more concentrated in the stems.

If you do have the root and the greens, you can also make this roots and tops recipe. For a lovely meal serve these greens with brown rice and aduki beans and nishime. You can also use daikon greens in this udon noodle dish.

Looking for a recipe for the daikon radish? Try daikon rounds with mirin.


Sautèed Daikon Greens with Onion, Garlic and Lemon


  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 onion cut in thin half-moons
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 1-2 garlic cloves minced
  • 3 bunches daikon greens 1 bunch is the amount from 1 radish, washed and chopped
  • A few slices of fresh lemon


  • Heat a large skillet on medium heat. Add the oil. Add the onion and sea salt as soon as a little piece gently sizzles in the oil. Sautè, stirring frequently for about 5 minutes or until onion starts getting translucent.
  • Add the garlic and sautè for 2 minutes.
  • Add the daikon greens and stir until the greens get coated with the oil and onions. Add a Tbsp or two of water. Cover and let cook until tender, 3-4 minutes.
  • Remove from heat. Add squeezes of lemon juice when serving.

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18 Responses

  1. foods for the soul

    They look so yummy! But I doubt our grocery store carries them… I’ll have to keep an eye out though, just in case!

    • sweetveg

      Me, too! Both the root and the greens. I will try to post a recipe with dried daikon, too, at some point. It’s yummy in beans.

  2. narf77

    No daikon greens here BUT I do have a daughter who adores daikon root and so if I grew some in my veggie garden, I could have the tops and she could have the bottoms a win-win situation 🙂

  3. Juliana

    Thanks so much for this recipe! Just got daikons-with-their-greens from my CSA box and I had no idea how to prepare the greens (or even if they were really for eating… seemed like they would be since they left them attached, but I needed reassurance). Thanks again. 🙂

    • sweetveg

      I hope you enjoy them! Both daikon and turnip greens are my favorites.

  4. Abigail

    We live in Japan and our neighbor just gave us three huge just-harvested daikon. I used half the leaves for this recipe, and I sprinkled it with shichimi tougarashi, a seven-spice seasoning including yuzu and red pepper. Yum! Thanks for the recipe.

  5. Abigail

    I also boiled some of the chopped daikon itself with carrots in salted water, then drained and sprinkled with parsley. Our boys loved it. I’m going to make some daikon leaves furikake (sprinkles for rice) with some more of the leaves, and some daikon pickles with more of the daikon. I also heard from my neighbor that you can make a kinpira with very thinly sliced daikon (a spicy-sweet side dish with sesame oil, mirin, soy sauce, and sliced hot red peppers).

    • sweetveg

      All of your ideas sound delicious. Thank you so much for sharing!! Daikon greens and root are definitely one of my favorite vegetables.

  6. Laura

    I’ve made this before.Today I dor some nice greens from the bunch of 4 dailkon from my local farmers market. I did the prep for this when I discovered I had no lemons. I used lime and coconut oil instead. Still yummy.

    • sweetveg

      Awesome! I don’t use lime very often. That’s good to know it works. With coconut oil, too. Yum. Thank you for sharing.

  7. jp

    Thanks for this tip. I grow daikon in my garden, and used to just toss the greens into the compost pile.

    • sweetveg

      I’m so glad you are eating them now! Yummy! I love turnip greens, too. They are very similar.