I grew up in Eastern Washington on 11 acres, in a house my parents built with logs from our land. It was a beautiful piece of land, situated right next to the river with a garden and an orchard. Inside, the counters were red and the light fixtures were green. The cabinets were handmade by my Dad and next to our sink, there was almost always a jar with sprouts growing in it. Crazy how little habits like this are imprinted on us in our childhood. Here that Moms? Our kids might not seem like they’re watching, but guess what? They are. Now as an adult, you know what sits next to my sink? Yep….sprouts. #nerdalert
I started growing my own for a million reasons, such as:
- The stores no longer carry them.
- They are delicious and FULL of vitamins.
- They are ready in less than a week.
- The kids love watching them grow bigger each day.
- They take literally no space.
- It’s like gardening on your counter top.
- It’s fun to experiment with different varieties.
“This light, wiry fare is the cornerstone of “living foods,” as it truly is alive at the time of consumption. Many believe sprouts impart their life energy and vitality to our bodies when we eat them, and while that may sound a bit esoteric to some, scientific research has substantiated their claims – in part.
The special thing about sprouts is that they continue producing health-promoting vitamins up until the moment you eat them, even while chilling in your refrigerator. Harvested vegetables and fruits – on the other hand – start losing their vitamin content as soon as they’re picked, and if you don’t buy locally, who knows how long your produce has been in transport and how much of its vitality has diminished from farm to fork.
Sprouts offer nutritional value that is nearly impossible to get elsewhere. They are baby plants in their prime – imbued with all of the necessary nutrients to create and nourish the growth of said plant. They have a greater concentration of vitamins and minerals, proteins, enzymes, phytonutrients, antioxidants, trace minerals and more than at any other point in the plant’s life – even when compared with the mature vegetable.” Read more on Organic Authority…..
Convinced and ready to get started? Great! Let’s talk about what you need (which is hardly anything at all!)
- A wide mouth mason jar
- Some high quality, organic sprouting seeds (a link to the ones I love is at the bottom of this post)
- A sprouting lid (see bottom of this post for a link)
- A bowl the right size and weight to prop your jar upside down in
- Fresh water
Here’s how you grow your own sprouts:
Important: Wash your hands well, sanitize your jars, and prepare the seeds in a very clean area. This will prevent contamination. Before each new round of seeds that you sprout, wash your jar and sprouting lid very well.
- Measure 1-3 tablespoons of seeds into a wide mouth jar.
- Cover with your sprouting lid.
- Add water, swirl, and drain.
- Add 1 cup cool water, to completely cover seeds and soak for 6 – 8 hrs.
- Now you begin rinsing and draining until the sprouts are done.
- Rinse 2-3 times daily: Refill jar with cool water, swirl and drain.
- Invert jar and prop it at an angle in your bowl. They need air and it needs to be tilted so the water can completely drain.
In 4 – 6 days, your sprouts will be ready. Think 1-2 inches long, depending on the variety. When they’re ready, rinse them well and then dry them in a strainer. Store them in a container in the refrigerator, with a few paper towels in it to help maintain freshness. Enjoy them over just about anything.
Can they be gluten free? Absolutely! There are many different varieties of sprouting seeds! Broccoli, peas, radish, beans and many others. It’s fun to try them all.
Can I rinse them too often? No. I rinse mine sometimes 4 or 5 times a day, just be sure they’re draining well each time. Remember tilted, upside down into a bowl. I prop it up against the wall.
How do you use them besides in salads? Use them with tuna or egg salad on sandwiches or without bread. •Use them in a stir-fry (mung bean sprouts are especially good for this) •Add them to soups •Wrap them up in tortillas with other veggies, meats and cheeses for the most delicious wraps •Give them to your chickens for the most delicious treat •And the list goes on…..
Here are the supplies I personally love (affiliate links):
Happy Sprouting! Do you have any questions? Please share your successes on Instagram to #nwhealthymama or post pictures on Facebook. I’d love to see!