If you didn’t yet know it, I’m a HUGE fan of sprouting.
Why? Because sprouts and indoor greens are among THE most potent foods that you can put into your body.
Sprouts will make you look and feel younger, increase your energy, add masses of first-class nutrition to your diet as well as enzymes, and they are the cheapest of all raw foods to buy.
Have I piqued your interest yet?!
Today I am sharing with you a brief overview of sprouting – the what, why and some of the how. At the end of the article you’ll find a link to watch me demo the how as well as the opportunity to download a gorgeous step-by-step eBook sharing all you need to know.
So let’s get started!
WHAT IS SPROUTING?
Sprouting is an alternative term for germinating, although the sprouting process goes a little beyond basic germination and results in a partially grown or young plant. In a raw food kitchen we’re looking specifically at the sprouting of a nut, seed, bean or grain in order to render it edible or more easily digestible. Nuts do not need to be sprouted to make them edible, nor do some seeds, but both benefit from soaking and sprouting, as they become more easily digestible and juicier as a result. Other seeds, i.e. those that are supposed to be sprouted, plus all beans, pulses and legumes (with the exception of peanuts) need to be sprouted if they are to be eaten raw. Kidney beans should never be eaten raw and should be avoided unless eaten cooked. Grains should also be soaked and sprouted, although dry oats are an exception and can be milled down and used to make cookies successfully without being sprouted first.
The sprouting process begins in water in your very own kitchen.
When a seed, bean, nut or grain is soaked in water for a period of time, the plant’s enzyme inhibitors are removed. These enzyme inhibitors prevent a plant from germinating unless the right conditions for growth are met, and so once the seed comes into contact with water and the enzyme inhibitors are washed away the germination process begins. This process sets into action a whole chain of reactions enabling the plant to grow at a rapid rate. As it does so, the vitamin content increases dramatically, to the point where the sprouted seed can contain hundreds or thousands times more vitamins than it did previously, and the protein, carbohydrates and fats begin to break down into a pre-digested form making for easier and better digestion and assimilation overall. The enzyme content of each seed, been, nut or grain also skyrockets making sprouts one of the most enzyme rich (i.e. live) foods on
WHAT DO I NEED TO SPROUT?
You don’t need any fancy equipment to get sprouting, although there are many pieces of equipment available to help you. To get started you’ll need some seeds or beans for sprouting, a container to sprout them in such as a jam jar and something to drain the water through, like a sieve or some netting or muslin secured around the top of the jar.
BEST WAYS TO GET SPROUTING
Sprouting is actually very easy, but some seeds and beans tend to sprout more easily than others. The easiest ones tend to be mung beans, lentil, fenugreek, chickpea (garbanzo) and quinoa. These are all quick to grow (quinoa takes just 24 hours; the others take 2–3 days on average) and mastering the sprouting of these will help you get more confident about sprouting other seeds and beans that take longer to grow or are slightly more tricky.
There are a few different ways to sprout your seeds and beans, but the two easiest and cheapest methods are the jar method and the bag method.
You can watch me demo the jar method here if you’d like to see how it’s done (warning! – this video is now 11 years old but it’s still as I teach sprouting today)…
…and/or you can download my complete guide to sprouting and growing indoor greens, here for FREE, and gain instant access if you want the full scoop and step-by-step to growing both.
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Want to listen to this article on audio instead? Click here to listen to it on my podcast.