15 Purple Vegetables For Your Garden

Growing purple vegetables is a great way to beautify your garden while also getting the extra nutrition that these colorful vegetables provide.

Here are 15 attractive purple vegetables to plant in your garden.

Some of these veggies will fade when they’re cooked but most of them can be eaten raw to make the most of their vibrant color and nutrition.

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purple vegetable plants

Growing your own vegetables from seed means that you can grow unusual, brightly colored varieties that you wouldn’t find in the nursery or garden center.

Why grow purple vegetables in your garden?

As well as looking great in the garden, purple varieties of vegetables are high in anthocyanins, violet / blue colored pigments that help to protect the plants from stressors like harsh sunlight and cold temperatures.

When we consume purple vegetables, the anthocyanins act as antioxidants that help to quench free radicals in the body.

Anthocyanins are also found in blueberries, cranberries, raspberries, cherries, red grapes and red wine. [1]

15 PURPLE VEGETABLES TO PLANT IN YOUR GARDEN

1. Carrots

Carrots were originally purple or yellow in color before the orange varieties that we’re familiar with appeared.

Purple carrots have similar growing requirements to regular carrots and they do best when the seeds are planted directly in the garden.

Purple Haze and Cosmic Purple are dark purple on the outside and bright orange in the middle, while Black Nebula is a dark purple color and it retains its color when cooked.

purple carrots

2. Kale

There are many different varieties of kale including some beautiful colorful varieties that range from reddish purple to dark purple.

Red Russian kale has a purple stem with green and purple leaves or if you’re looking for dark purple leaves choose a variety like Redbor.

I like to pick kale leaves when they’re young and tender to use in salads. You can also steam kale leaves or use them in stir fries.

purple kale

3. Cabbage

Purple cabbages are brightly colored vegetables that are great for making a colorful salad or coleslaw with.

You can also plant ornamental cabbages which are edible but they taste bitter, so you can use the leaves as a garnish or just enjoy them as a bedding plant in the garden.

purple cabbage

4. Cauliflower

Growing vibrant purple cauliflowers in your garden is a great way to impress your friends and they make a nice change from the regular white variety.

Cauliflowers are cool-season vegetable plants and they do best when planted in fall or early winter.

Purple cauliflower

5. Tomatoes

Red tomatoes are a vegetable garden staple, but there are some interesting and attractive purple varieties that you can plant to make your garden more interesting.

Look for purple heirloom tomatoes or black pearl cherry tomatoes.

Purple colored tomatoes will add color and interest to your salads.

purple tomatoes

6. Beans

If you normally grow green beans, why not plant some purple beans for extra color and nutrition?

You can grow beans on a trellis to maximize the space in your garden and they make a beautiful display.

Try purple hyacinth beans or purple pole beans.

purple beans

7. Kohlrabi

Kohlrabi is an interesting looking vegetable that is from the same family as broccoli and cabbage.

Many people think it’s a root vegetable, but the edible part is the swollen stem that grows just above the soil.

Kohlrabi can be green or purple and they both taste like a cross between turnip and radish. The leaves are also edible and can be used in salads. [2]

Kohlrabi

8. Lettuce

There are many salad vegetables that range from purple to burgundy and they look great when planted alternately with green lettuces in the garden.

Try planting Ruby Red, Red Romaine or Oakleaffor beautiful purple salad leaves.

salad plants

9. Peppers

Sweet bell peppers and hot peppers both come in purple varieties and they’re attractive garden plants.

Peppers grow best in areas with warm temperatures and they like full sun.

Try purple ghost peppers or a rainbow mix.

growing peppers indoors

10. Eggplants

Eggplants, also called Aubergines, are attractive vegetable plants that come in a range of purple shades including dark purple, light purple and striped varieties.

The anthocyanins in purple eggplants are in the skin, so leave the skin on for maximum nutrition when you’re cooking with eggplants.

eggplant

11. Asparagus

Asparagus plants are long lived perennials and once you plant them in your garden they will keep coming back for many years.

Purple asparagus is sweeter in taste than regular green asparagus and it can be sliced thinly and eaten raw in salads.

You can also cook purple asparagus but it’ll lose most of its color.

purple asparagus

12. Corn

Corn is an easy vegetable plant to grow and it looks great growing in the garden.

Most varieties grow to about 6 feet (1.8 m) tall and there are some pretty heirloom purple varieties to try.

purple corn

13. Radicchio

Radicchio, also known as an Italian chicory, looks similar to red cabbage but it has a bitter taste.

It grows best in full sun and will tolerate light frosts.

Radicchio can be eaten raw in salads or lightly sauteed to reduce the bitterness.

purple radicchio

14. Sweet Potato

Some purple sweet potatoes have purple skin and they’re orange on the inside while others are purple right the way through.

Try planting Hawaii Purple sweet potatoes which are white on the outside and bright purple in the middle.

purple sweet potatoes

15. Beets

Beets, also known as beetroot, are an easy root vegetable to grow.

They’re reddish purple in color and as well as the root, the leaves are also edible.

beet leaves

So there are 15 beautiful purple colored vegetables to plant in your garden.

Growing a few of these vibrant purple vegetable plants will add interest and color to your vegetable garden and it’s a great way to get kids to eat more veggies.

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Have you tried growing any of these purple vegetable plants in your garden? Let me know in the comments below.

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Kelly Martin

Hi, I'm Kelly Martin. I'm passionate about gardening and horticulture and I love growing just about everything including herbs, vegetables, flowers, succulents and indoor plants. I've been gardening most of my life and I created this blog to inspire beginner gardeners to create their own urban garden. Read more

This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. I planted veggies in among my flowers this year for the first time, including a bambino eggplant and red leaf lettuce which has a purplish tint. I wanted purple pole beans but couldn’t find seeds locally. I love the purple cauliflower and would love to add that next year (or this fall).

  2. Wow these are beautiful! There are so many purple veggies I didn’t know about. Too bad I can’t get many of them in the grocery where I live, but I will certainly have my eye out more, since I don’t have a garden.

  3. Wow how cool is this. I like growing veggies and I love all your pretty purple vegetable photos.

  4. What an amazing range! I knew about some of them, but didn’t know that so many veggies came in purple variations, as well. As a child, I used to love eating the purple lettuce. Maybe something to start growing again …

  5. I love purple potatoes. I buy the mini/baby ones that are purple all the way through for salt crusted potatoes. Purple cauliflower makes an amazing and vibrant puree to add to a dish, upping the presentation factor by a ton. That is sure to impress! I didn’t realize that beans could be purple though! That is a new one to me. The one I really want to try growing myself is purple carrots. I buy rainbow carrots in the store all the time to roast in the oven with some garlic salt and olive oil. The purple ones have a sweet potato-like quality to them when roasted and I love it.

  6. Beautiful vegetables and the colors are great! I love it. I wish I had a garden to plant them.

  7. This was really interesting to read. I knew about a lot of the purple vegetables that you listed (and have grown many myself in the past) but I had no idea that you could grow purple tomatoes! That’s definitely on my list for the future!

  8. Is it just me or are purple veggies better?! My favorite are beets followed by the cabbage. I wonder if they are naturally purple or were engineered to be purple.

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