What is Sprouting?
Sprouting is the natural process by which seeds or spores germinate and put out shoots, and already established plants produce new leaves or buds or other newly developing parts experience further growth. (Wikipedia)
Simply put, sprouting is the beginning stages of seeds growing into a plant. Many seeds, beans and spores are incredibly nutritious at this stage and can be used as a superfood in salads, soups, smoothies and any number of delicious dishes.
What foods can you Sprout?
There are tons of bean and seed types that can be sprouted!
Some of the most common sprouting seeds that people use include:
- Mung Beans
How do you start Sprouting at home?
Sprouting is actually a fairly easy process and can be accomplished at home with a few easy steps.
Be sure to follow food safety precautions and steps carefully!
Each bean or seed may have a slightly different process. We recommend starting with broccoli sprouts for their ease of growth and immense nutritional advantages!
Steps to Sprouting Success
Inspect your seeds and be sure to rid of any dirt, rocks or other non-seed items. Add 3-7 tablespoons of seeds into a quart-sized sprouting jar. (4 tablespoons of seeds yields about 4 cups of sprouts)
Fill the jar with water (plus a bacteria killing solution – apple cider vinegar + a drop of liquid dish soap works well) in a 1:10 ratio. Let sit for 10 minutes then rinse very well.
Add enough fresh water to cover the seeds completely, with at least an inch of water above them. Let them soak for about 8 hours / overnight.
Drain the water from the jar. Add fresh water through your sprouting jar lid a swirl the jar around to rinse the seeds. Completely drain the jar of water and rest the jar at an angle so the remaining water can drain out.
Rinse the seeds like this twice a day, for 3-5 days.
That’s it! After your sprouts have finished growing you can store them in the refrigerator or freezer. Use them in salads, smoothies, on toast, soups… Use your imagination!
What gear do you need to start Sprouting?
We recommend buying sprouting seeds in bulk from a health food store or online. Buying in bulk will keep your costs lower and keep you supplied for batch after batch of sprouts.
Sprouting jars come in all shapes and sizes! Some features to keep in mind that are helpful are glass (mason jars are great), filter-screen top and size.
Seed Cleaning Supplies
Apple Cider Vinegar and a drop of liquid dish soap to clean your seeds prior to starting the sprouting process.
Check out Dr. Rhonda Patrick’s article here on the importance of cleaning seeds as well as the many health benefits of broccoli sprouts given their concentrated sources of sulforaphane.