Sprout Out The New Year

Winter is a great time for greens. And I’m not talking beet tops or the six dollar bags of mixed greens you get at the supermarket or in the frozen food isle. I’m talking excitingly fresh, crunchy, delicious, super nutritious – sprouts. If you haven’t tried them or have tried them in the past and fallen off, now is a perfect time to start sproutin’! You don’t need anything fancier to get started than a jar or a sieve, but if you want more specific tools to do the job there are plenty out there.

One of the nicest things about sprouts is that there is no dirt required. It’s about the cleanest thing you can do in the kitchen besides dishes. If you want to grow something like wheatgrass for juice, that’s more complicated, but for simple eating, there is a long list of vitality chocked seeds that can cover your plate with no mess in as little as three days. All you need is water, a container, and a space on your counter.

Sprouts have been cultivated and consumed by humans for at least 5000 years, – and the tools and availability just keep getting better. When we started sprouting mung beans back in the 60’s to save money, I thought the little plastic caps that fit on top of the mason jar, with varying sized holes was a major appliance. Now there are stacking trays and mats and all kinds of other paraphernalia to make it easier and more efficient.

If you have never grown sprouts mung beans are a good place to start, because they’re mild and you can use them both fresh and in stir-fry. Another easy and really great seed to sprout is alfalfa. I’m pretty sure every sandwich is better with alfalfa. Turkey, cranberry, avocado and alfalfa is the best ever post holiday snack or sandwich. You don’t even need bread, just roll it up!

Broccoli sprouts are another one that is well worth the effort. Possibly the most popular sprout in the US, they are mild, bright, inexpensive and contain 50 times the amount of sulfurophane found in the same amount of mature broccoli by weight. You get as much antioxidant value in 1 ounce of Broccoli Sprouts as you would if you ate 3 pounds of fully grown Broccoli, according to Johns Hopkins University. Three tablespoons makes three cups, so it costs just pennies for a serving. Less expensive than any vitamin or supplement on the market, far more beautiful, more fun, and a lot more tasty!

Sprouts are a living, enzyme-rich food, that is naturally low in calories. Their vitamin A content will usually be double that of their grown counterpart, various B group vitamins will be 5 – 10 times higher in concentration, and vitamin C will increase 5 – 10 as well. According to Grow Youthful, the protein content of sprouts becomes easily digestible, and rich new nutrients such as enzymes and phytochemicals are created. They also contain significant amounts of bio-available calcium, iron and zinc. So, what are you waiting for?

Here is a quick link to a “make your own” sprouter, so you can get started. (Just like the good old days!)

Do get organic seeds, I can’t even imagine what the concentration would be of toxic stuff in seeds grown with pesticides. Use absolutely clean utensils, jar and lid etc. Rinse thoroughly before soaking and rinse well when you do rinse beans or seeds. Alfalfa though a favorite should not be eaten daily.

Here is a partial list of just some of the seeds you can get from Sprout People. Enough choices to keep you busy for the entire New Year if you like!

Bean Sprouts

  • Adzuki Beans
  • Mung Bean Sprouts
  • Bill Jump Pea Sprouts
  • Green Pea Sprouts
  • Marrowfat Pea Sprouts
  • Speckled Pea Sprouts
  • Yellow Pea Sprouts
  • Carnival Pea Sprouts
  • PeaBanzo Sprouts
  • Peanut Sprouts
  • Peasant Mix
  • Pinto Bean Sprouts
  • San Francisco Mix
  • Soy Bean Sprouts
  • Spring Garden Sprouts
  • Sweet Pea Mix
  • Pea Shoots

Brassica Sprouts

  • Organic Broccoli Sprouts
  • Green Cabbage Sprouts
  • Red Cabbage Sprouts
  • Hot Squared Sprout Mix
  • Red Russian Kale Sprouts
  • Long Life Sprout Mix
  • Radish Sprouts
  • Tatsoi Sprouts
  • Mustard Greens

Earth Easy has a nice list of types of sprouts, how they taste and what they can be used for.


Sprout People seem to be exactly who they say they are! Enjoy!


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