Friday, January 8, 2010

How to grow sprouts

When the garden is covered in snow, when you want to play around with seeds but it's not quite seed starting time, when one of your New Year's resolutions is to eat more healthily, sprout your own seeds for eating!

My materials below are from Sprout People. They take sprouting and their seeds very seriously and if your interest in sprouts is piqued by this post, definitely consult them. They're not paying me to say this, and if you check out their site, you'll see why I think they're so cool.

If you thought people just sprouted alfalfa seeds, you're in for a flavorful shock. This time, I used Sprout People's Nicks's Hot Sprout Salad - red clover, radish, mustard, fenugreek, cress, dill, and celery. The sprouter I used has an insert with a sieve-like bottom that allows you to drain water by simply lifting it out of the outside container. Be sure your materials are ultra-clean before sprouting.

Day 1: soak seeds for 8-12 hours in about three times as much water. Below, the fragrant seeds prior to soaking. This is about 2 tablespoons of seed.

After the initial soaking stage, drain very well. The procedure is the same for the next few days. Every 8-12 hours, rinse the seeds and drain very well. The whole operation sits on my kitchen counter.

Day 2 photo below...the seeds after the initial soaking.

Day 3 photo below... follow same procedure - rinse and drain very well every 8-12 hours.

Day 4 photo below...still rinsing and draining every 8-12 hours.

Day 5 photo below... you guessed it. Every 8-12 hours.

Day 6 photo below... I am deeming this done because I see the cotyledons opening up and the hulls are starting to come off easily. At this point, I take the cover off and leave in a sunnier spot. Within just a few hours, the baby plants continue to grow a bit and it all greens up.

Later that day...below, I rinse the sprouts in a big bowl of water. The hulls float to the top to scoop out and compost. Unsprouted seed and hulls also fall to the bottom.

Below, sprouts ready to eat in less than one week!


  1. Wendy, that's amazing and it seems very simple! I'd love to do bean sprouts, because whenever I purchase them for use in stir fry some always wind up spoiling. This way you could grow small amounts that are just enough for your weekly use at a time. Cheers! (Oh, I named a couple of watermelons for you to check out online in my response to your comment on my blog.)

  2. Wendy, this sounds easy for you. But I think it should ok for me to try too. I'll watch out for these seeds. I like to just stir fry lightly with garden and chilly. Add some white pepper and soya sauce... yum yum. Btw, I never knew you guys takes bean sprout also he he...

  3. What a cool idea, Wendy. They really are best when very fresh, and seem to spoil very fast.

  4. Great post! My method is far less fancy than yours, involving a mason jar and panty hose. LOL Lots of great sprouting seeds are usually available at health food stores. Yours look very tasty. :-)

  5. Deborah, true about eating fresh. It's so fast to grow your own - practically the same timeframe as making a shopping list, getting to the store...

    Julie - less fancy than this?! I think I can imagine how the jar and pantyhose should put it on your blog when you get a chance!

    Avis - I'll check it out - thanks!! My husband talked to some guy 100 year old farmer at a watermelon stand on the side of the road in Florida. He describe the perfect watermelon and the guy said he was describing a black diamond. I'll head over and see what else you would suggest!

    Stephanie - your recipe sounds wonderful!

  6. That's a great idea and soooo easy.

  7. Wendy,
    there you go, sprouting off again. :)

    I haven't grown sprouts this year, although I have some old seeds tucked away in a cannister in the kitchen. I wonder if they will still sprout? I think it's great ro grow your own, you never know what's on those at the store and how long they have actually been sitting there. Yum!

    Thanks for the healthful and yummy reminder.


  8. Patience..., thats the keyword, to come up with a bowlful of sprouts.

  9. One of these days, I am going to sprout some mung bean seeds. Home made seeds are definitely more healthy and nutritious. This is great idea.

  10. Your sprouts are beautiful! I used to sprout alfalfa and mung beans. About a year ago, I got some seeds to sprout, but I gave up after a couple tries, because they spoiled after a couple days, even though I did a good job rinsing them. I thought maybe the seeds I had had salmonella on them. Seeing yours makes me want to try again. I'll have to check on that company you put the link for.

  11. You are great, turning the hobby to the hobbyist and earning while enjoying. I love your 'how to' posts like this one and the luffa above. We already know this but when it is placed formally in posts like this, it becomes something special. Keep them coming. thanks you!


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