You’re going to like this. The experience… AND the taste. Learning to sprout is exciting for the entire family!
People who have never sprouted before might get overwhelmed at the thought of trying something new. And some may be scared to try it if they’ve heard about mold and food poisoning from sprouts.
But I’m here to set the record straight. In my humble opinion, sprouting is one of the BEST (and easiest) things you can add to your life to improve your health and nutrition.
Sprouting is a simple and nutritious way to add fresh greens and sprouts to your diet. It requires minimal equipment and can be done in just a few steps.
Eat Your Sprouts
By sprouting daily and rotating my seeds, I always have a fresh, living, highly-nutritious meal ready to go, no matter what other foods I have available.
For example, mixed sprouts paired with a tahini-mustard dressing are delicious!
(Note: you may need to build up your fiber levels gradually for optimal digestion.)
And if you struggle with digestion issues at all, be sure to download your Delightful Digestion Food Combining Guide.
Quick and Easy Overview of How to Sprout
Germinate your seeds and legumes to grow young shoots!
You can download a copy of this Sprouting PDF for a quick reference when you’re starting out. Share with your loved ones – this is one of the easiest and best things they can do for their health.
Be sure to choose the right seeds or legumes specifically labeled for sprouting (I use Sproutman and SeedBankBox*), as they are typically untreated and have a higher germination rate.
Common sprouting options include mung beans, alfalfa seeds, lentils, and broccoli seeds.
Simple Steps to Abundant and Delicious Living Sprouts
- Rinse the seeds: Place the desired amount of seeds in a clean sprouting jar or a sprouting tray. Rinse the seeds thoroughly under cool water to remove any debris or impurities.
- Soak the seeds: After rinsing, soak the seeds in water. The soaking time varies depending on the type of seed, but generally, overnight soaking (8-12 hours) is sufficient. Follow the specific instructions provided with the seeds if available.
- Drain and rinse: After soaking, drain the water from the seeds using a strainer or the jar’s built-in sprouting lid. Rinse the seeds with fresh water and drain again to ensure proper moisture balance.
- Start the sprouting process: Place the drained seeds in the sprouting jar or tray. Cover the jar’s top with a mesh or sprouting lid to allow air circulation while preventing debris from entering. If using a sprouting tray, follow the tray’s instructions for proper setup.
- Rinse and drain: For the next few days, rinse the sprouts with water at least twice a day. Gently swish the seeds around in the water, then drain thoroughly. Ensure that the sprouts have proper drainage to avoid excess moisture, which can lead to mold.
- Watch them grow: Over the next few days, you’ll notice the sprouts growing. Continue the rinsing and draining process until the sprouts reach the desired length or maturity. This typically takes around 3-7 days, depending on the sprout variety.
- Harvest and store: Once the sprouts have reached the desired size, give them a final rinse and drain. Remove any remaining seed hulls or ungerminated seeds. Afterward, store the sprouts in a sealed container in the refrigerator. Consume them within a few days for optimal freshness.
Remember to practice good hygiene throughout the process, including washing your hands and ensuring clean equipment and surfaces to prevent contamination.
Health Benefits of Sprouting
Here are some reasons why sprouting is good for you. It will motivate you to give sprouting a try.
It’s easier than you think. And faster than you think. And more affordable than most realize.
Have fun and experiment – so many different flavors and textures!
Increased nutrient availability: Sprouting enhances the availability and digestibility of nutrients present in seeds or legumes. During the sprouting process, enzymes are activated, breaking down complex compounds into simpler forms that are easier for our bodies to absorb. This increases the bioavailability of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants present in sprouts.
Enhanced nutrient content: Sprouts are known to have increased levels of certain nutrients compared to unsprouted seeds or legumes. For example, sprouts often contain higher levels of vitamins C, E, and K, as well as minerals like iron, zinc, and calcium.
Improved digestion: The sprouting process helps break down complex carbohydrates and proteins, making them easier to digest. This can be beneficial for individuals with digestive issues or difficulty digesting certain foods.
Increased enzyme activity: Sprouts are rich in enzymes that aid in digestion and various metabolic processes in our bodies. These enzymes can support overall digestive health and help improve nutrient absorption.
Potential health benefits: Improved immune function, reduced inflammation, and better blood sugar control. Sprouts are also often low in calories and high in fiber, making them a healthy addition to weight management and promoting overall satiety.
Fresh and flavorful: Sprouts have a crisp texture and fresh flavor, making them a delightful addition to salads, sandwiches, wraps, and other dishes. Adding sprouts to your meals can enhance their taste and provide a pleasant crunch.
Final Sprouting Tips and Reminders
- Maintain cleanliness throughout the sprouting process to prevent contamination.
- If mold or unpleasant odors occur during sprouting, discard the batch and start fresh.
- Experiment with different seeds and combinations to discover your favorite sprouts.
- Ensure proper ventilation and drainage to avoid excessive moisture, which can lead to spoilage.
Enjoy your homegrown sprouts in salads, sandwiches, stir-fries, or as a nutritious addition to various dishes. If you sprout chickpeas, you can even make raw hummus!
Best Sprouting Book with Recipes that Use Sprouts!
There are plenty of excellent books on sprouting, microgreens, wheatgrass, and more. My current recommendation is Doug Evans’ book on sprouting because he’s so passionate about sharing the message.
Doug eats a high raw (or exclusively raw) diet. And his book is the best, most concise overview of everything you’ll ever need to know.
He also goes over each type of sprouting and microgreen seed and why it’s beneficial to humans. You can check it out on Amazon, The Sprout Book.
Plus, it includes amazing recipes that incorporate all kinds of sprouts.
*I have a 10% discount code for SeedBankBox “ShariLikesFruit” because I order from them, anyway.
They grow everything themselves, they have a monthly membership IF you want one (in order to experiment with new seeds), and they even have rare heirloom varieties!