It used to be that sprouts like Bean, Alfalfa, and Mung Bean Sprouts were only used in Asian cooking. The Mung Bean, for example, came to the United States in the 19th century. Instead of being enjoyed by humans, though, it was initially used to feed livestock. Since that time, Americans have come to realize the nutritional value that sprouts have. For example, the Mung Bean Sprout contains healthful amounts of Vitamin A, Ascorbic Acid, Thiamin, and Riboflavin. All sprouts contain Chlorophyll which helps fight against anemia. And, Alfalfa Sprouts contains more fiber than whole wheat bread does. The freshest and least expensive sprouts are the ones that you grow yourself. You can easily grow your own sprouts by following these easy instructions:
To start this project, you’ll need to decide what type(s) of sprouts you want to grow. Besides the Bean, Alfalfa, and Mung Bean Sprouts, I mentioned previously, there are many other types besides. These include Buckwheat, Millet, Amaranth,
Barley, Rye, Almond, Quinoa, and Wheat, to name several examples. The amount of seed will depend on the amount of sprouts you want to grow. One pound of Mung Bean seeds will grow about six pounds of sprouts.
You’ll need to inspect the seed you buy before you sprout it. Remove any tiny sticks and other debris you may find in it.
The easiest way to grow your own sprouts will be to use canning jars. Instead of using the traditional metal rings and lids, though, you’ll need to make lids out of screening material. Cut squares of the screening material that cover the top, plus allow a couple inches of overhang on all the sides.
To grow Mung Bean Sprouts, which are the most popular, cover the bottom of the canning jar with a layer of seeds. Pour in just enough tap water to cover them. Then, place a screen over the top of each jar. Use a rubberband to secure the screen to the jar. Allow the jar to set undisturbed for about twelve hours. Once the time is up, drain the soak water out of the jar. Then, rinse the Mung Bean Seeds with clean tap water.
Now, you’ll need to tilt the canning jar so the water can continue to drain from the seeds. Otherwise, instead of growing sprouts, your seeds will grow mold. Don’t set the jars in direct sunlight. The Mung Bean Seeds will sprout in a couple days. In the meantime, though, you’ll need to keep rinsing them a couple times a day.
Once the Mung Bean Seeds have sprouted and have grown out, place them in the refrigerator until you eat them. Don’t wait too long to eat your sprouts, though, as they taste best when they are fresh! For every day you keep your Mung Bean Sprouts in the refrigerator, continue to rinse them with clean tap water.
Now that you have grown your own sprouts, you can use them in salads, casseroles, and instead of lettuce when you make Tacos. There a hundreds of ways you can add healthy sprouts to your diet.
But if you wait too long to eat your Mung Bean Seeds, they will mold or turn brown. If this happens, discard them.