Growing Sprouts To Eat

Seed sprouts have been grown as healthy food for a very long time. When people think of sprouts, many think of the mung bean sprouts in Asian dishes. All sprouts start out as seeds. Most seeds can be sprouted and eaten, and some taste good radish sprouts.

Some plants like wheat grass, are grown in dirt and then are “mowed”. All other sprouts require only clean water and light to grow. Sprout seeds are first soaked in clean water for a few hours. Then they are rinsed with clean water, 2-3 times a day until done.

Many sprouts are bitter. Bitter-tasting sprouts taste much better when used as seasoning and mixed with other sprouts. Mixing sprouts usually improves the taste as compared to any one kind of sprout. For example, mixing one part radish with two parts alfalfa works well. It is usually best to mix seeds before you soak them, unless seeds require very different soak times.

Sometimes the seeds in mixes from sprouting stores require different soaking times. For example, adzuki beans can be soaked for 24 hours, while other seeds require just six hours of soak time. By the time adzuki seeds are ready to drain, the other seeds may be starting to drown.

Seeds for sprouting are cheap, especially when you consider how much they expand when they grow. One can buy sprouting seeds in health stores or web stores. Two web sites I like are Sprouting.com and SproutPeople.com.

Sprouting.com has no shipping charges on big orders, and has great prices. If you pick a medium size, the seeds come in resealable Ziploc bags. If you order either a tiny bag or a big bag, they are not resealable, so use freezer ziploc bags or Tupperware. Sprouting.com is run by Mumms, the seed people.

SproutPeople.com usually (but not always) has higher prices. They have great info on their web site, more variety, and carry better sprouting equipment. It’s worth ordering from SproutPeople even if their prices are a bit higher.

There are many ways to grow sprouts. Using a simple plastic device usually makes it easier. A cheap sprouter that works very well is the Sproutamo EasySprout (about $13). It’s not perfect because it lets the seeds at the bottom stay too wet.

However the Sproutamo is the most convenient sprouting device I’ve tried so far. As long as you drain seeds very well, it makes great sprouts. I discarded Sproutamo’s included small-seed screen. (You have to bump and shake the sprouter to get all the water out after rinsing, which makes it comes loose.)

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