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Grow Your Own Delicious and Nutritious Sprouts Using These Four Tools

Are you sprouting?

If you’re not, you should start. ASAP.

Sprouting seeds at home is a simple and cost-effective way to add nutritious greens to your diet—and all you need to get started is a canning jar, sprouting lid, water, and of course, seeds. Arugula, broccoli, beet, kale, mustard, radish, and our custom Old Mexico Microgreens Mix are some of our favorite seeds for sprouting. 

Not only is eating these tiny seedlings extremely healthy, but sprouts are very easy to grow, quick to mature, and take up hardly any space.

In this blog post, we’ll explore the benefits of sprouting seeds, identify which seeds are ideal for sprouting, and discuss exactly how to sprout seeds, step-by-step.

Whether you're a beginner or an experienced gardener, this guide will help you successfully grow sprouts right in your own kitchen—no outdoor garden required.

Benefits of sprouting seeds

First, let’s enumerate six reasons why you might want to sprout seeds at home.

  • Fast maturity

Sprouts have a short growing period, usually ranging from four to seven days depending on the variety. This means that you can grow a new crop of sprouts each week!

  • Easy to grow

The process of sprouting seeds requires minimal effort and can be done by anyone—beginning gardeners and experienced growers alike.

  • Inexpensive and accessible

Sprouting seeds are affordable and readily available, making it a cost-effective way to enjoy fresh greens.

  • Year-round availability

No need for soil to sprout seeds—all you need from seed to harvest is a mason jar, sprouting lid, and water. Since seeds are typically sprouted indoors, you can grow sprouts any time of the year, meaning you could have access to nutritious greens year-round.

  • Recipe-ready

Sprouts can be used in a variety of dishes, from salads and soups to stir-fries and sandwiches, adding flavor, nutrition, and texture to your favorite meals. Unlike microgreens, which need to be cut and harvested, simply rinse your sprouts and they’re ready to use.

  • Packed with nutrients

With sprouts, you're consuming the entire plant in its early, nutrient-dense stage. At this point, sprouts contain an entire plant’s worth of nutrition in a tiny package. Rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, sprouts contain an impressive amount of nutrition for their small size. Sprouts are a great source of vitamins A, B, C, E, and K—plus iron, calcium, and trace amounts of protein.

Best seeds for sprouting

Arugula

Add a spicy kick to any dish with arugula sprouts! These tender sprouts have a peppery flavor that pairs well with egg, tomato, cucumber, and cheese.

Broccoli

Similar to mature broccoli, broccoli sprouts have a slightly sweet, nutty flavor that goes with just about anything! Broccoli sprouts are rich in folic acid and fiber as well as essential vitamins, and they are typically ready to enjoy about five days after soaking. Top sandwiches and wraps with broccoli sprouts to add a crunchy texture and pile on the nutrition.

Beet

If you love the earthy, sweet flavor of beetroot, you’ll enjoy beet sprouts just as much. Beet sprouts take a little longer to mature than other seeds (between 11 and 21 days) but beet sprouts are absolutely worth the wait. Beautiful beet sprouts have bright pink stems and green leaves that really set off any dish.

Kale

Another sprouting seed as beautiful as it is tasty, kale sprouts have purple stems and contrasting dark green leaves. Kale sprouts aren’t as delicate as other sprouts, so they can be served raw or lightly cooked. With an earthy and crisp flavor reminiscent of other brassicas and a nutrition profile to match, kale sprouts are a versatile addition to a number of recipes. Plus, kale is one of the fastest seeds to sprout—perfect for the beginning gardener or the impatient grower.

Mustard

Similar to alfalfa sprouts in nutrition and texture, mustard sprouts have a spicy kick similar to horseradish. Like all sprouts, mustard is very nutrient-dense, packed with essential vitamins and minerals like magnesium, calcium, zinc, and iron. Mustard sprouts are harvestable between three and six days.

Radish

One of the universal favorite seeds for sprouting, radishes are also among the fastest seeds to sprout, finishing in about three to six days. Radish sprouts are spicy but are a bit milder than mature radishes, so they’re kid-friendly. The mix of red and white stems looks lovely as a garnish but packs enough nutrition to be the main course.

Old Mexico Microgreens Mix

We think the best way to sprout seeds is with a mix, and that’s why we created the Old Mexico Microgreens Mix. Sow or soak this blend of red beets, coriander, cabbages, radishes, and pepper cress to grow microgreens or for sprouting. It’s the perfect blend of sweet and spicy greens that you can add to almost anything—take our word for it!

Everything you need to sprout seeds at home

Sprouting seeds is one of the most accessible ways to grow your own food—you don’t even need a garden! All you need to grow sprouts are a few pieces of cheap equipment:

  • Canning jar

While you can use any size, we think that wide-mouth quart mason jars make the best jars for sprouting.

  • Sprouting lid

Choose between plastic and metal lids—the important factor is that the lids are mesh, allowing water to drain and air to circulate within the jar.

  • Seeds

Certain seeds are sold as “sprouting seeds,” but you really don’t need a particular kind of seed for sprouting. Some vegetables and herbs are better than others for sprouting, but you can use any seeds that you would plant in your garden.

  • Water

Tap water, spring water, well water—whatever water you have is fine to use for soaking and germinating seeds—just make sure to use warm (but not hot) water for soaking, and rinse with cold water.

How to sprout seeds in 5 easy steps

Once you see how simple it is to sprout seeds at home, you’ll never pass up the opportunity again.

1. Soak the seeds overnight

First, you need to soak the seeds for at least eight hours. The easiest way to do this is to put a couple of tablespoons of seeds in a mason jar and add just enough water to cover the seeds. Screw on a sprouting lid and let the seeds soak overnight.

2. Drain and rinse the seeds in the morning

The following morning, drain the old water and rinse the seeds by running clean, cold water into the jar and swirling the seeds around. Drain the water through the mesh sprouting lid and place the jar upside down in the sink to allow the water to fully drain.

3. Repeat Step 2 in the evening

Repeat the rinsing and draining process morning and evening for the next three days, at which point you will see sprouts beginning to grow. Some seeds will sprout in fewer or more days, depending on the variety.

4. Finish the sprouts

This step is optional, but you can finish sprouts (and make them look a little more appetizing) by placing the jar on a sunny windowsill for the final day or two. Exposure to sunlight will encourage the sprouts to turn green.

5. Rinse again and serve

Rinse the sprouts and allow them to air dry before incorporating them into your favorite recipe!

You can lightly cook sprouts to kill any harmful bacteria, but sprouts are generally safe to consume raw. If you’re adding sprouts to a cooked recipe, wait to add the sprouts until the final minute or two of cooking time to avoid turning the sprouts into mush.

Common questions about sprouting

  • Are sprouting seeds different from regular seeds?

Sure, there might be a technical difference between “sprouting seeds” and regular seeds, but the difference isn’t significant enough to justify paying premium prices for sprouting seeds.

At Seeds ‘n Such we do recommend that you only use non-GMO and untreated seeds for sprouting, like the ones in our shop. Our seed collection is just fine for sprouting—and if you buy in bulk, you get an even better deal.

  • Are sprouts the same as microgreens?

The two types of greens are very similar, but they are not the same. Two main differences between microgreens and sprouts are that sprouts are grown without soil (microgreens are typically grown in soil) and the entire sprout is edible (microgreens are cut just above soil level).

Microgreens and sprouts are both excellent ways to incorporate nutritious greens into your diet, and you can substitute one for the other in most recipes.

  • How long does it take to sprout seeds?

Most sprouts take anywhere between three days and a week to be harvestable, though some vegetables (like beets) take a little longer. Depending on the variety, sprouts are ready when they are between a half-inch and two inches long and are just beginning to grow cotyledons.

You’ll know the seeds are ready to eat when the seed coverings begin to fall off and the sprouts begin to take on their mature color.

  • How long do sprouts keep?

When stored in the crisper section of your refrigerator, sprouts will keep for up to a week. Once sprouts turn a little slimy or start to have a funky odor, it’s time to toss them and start a new batch. If you find that your sprouts are going bad before you get to eat them, start smaller batches more frequently.

Growing sprouts in a mason jar is a fun and rewarding way to enjoy fresh greens at home. By following these simple steps and using the right seeds, you can have a steady supply of nutrient-rich sprouts year-round.

Start your sprouting journey today and explore the world of flavorful, homegrown sprouts by visiting our online store!

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