Nothing is more fascinating and satisfying than seeing your lentils and legumes sprouting out beautifully. And, of course, nothing compares to the freshness and crunch of the freshly sprouted beans when added to other dishes. Add a handful of Mung bean sprouts in soups, salads, chaats, and sandwiches, and see their magic work! So let’s learn how to make sprouts?
Sprouting your favorite beans at home is a breeze. They are easy to grow and are much better than store-bought ones.
The first and foremost benefit of sprouting at home is that you can enjoy healthy homemade sprouts all year long if proper hygiene and a friendly environment are maintained.
What are Sprouts?
Sprouts are germinated seeds/ legumes that form an essential part of the vegetarian, predominantly vegan diet. Different kinds of sprouts can be grown at home, and each has its flavoring and nutritional benefits. Some of the most popular sprouts are —
- Dried beans
- Green pea sprouts
- Chickpeas How to make Sprouts
- Chia seeds
- Flax seeds
- Alfalfa seeds, and many more.
Besides the list above, moong bean sprouts are the most popular among the masses. Moong bean sprouts are germinated moong lentils known for their high nutritional value, making them the most popular type of sprouts.
They can be eaten raw, boiled, minced into cutlets, or added to soups and your favorite dishes.
Sprouts can be relished as a healthy breakfast or even a delicious evening snack. Most people prefer mung bean sprouts in their salads, as it adds color and glistening freshness to it, besides the delectable crunch that elevates the deliciousness of the salad.
So, throw yourself the challenge of growing your sprouts at home, and you will find it the most rewarding task ever!
What makes sprouts a healthy food
Sprouts are known to be nutrient-rich food containing high quantities of Vitamins and minerals, which help detoxify the body and promote immunity.
The process of sprouting converts the starch present in the legumes to a more nutrient-rich food, thus maximizing the nutritional value of the moong beans.
The sprouted beans are packed with vitamins A, C, and D, minerals such as iron and copper, and also a good dose of proteins.
The outer covering of the legumes/ seeds often consists of anti-nutrients (phytates and lectins) that are difficult to absorb/ digest. How to make Sprouts
Dormant seeds contain a substance called Phytic acid that stores minerals inside themselves. This phytic acid, during germination, changes its form (anti-nutrient is eliminated) and reveals the powerhouse of nutrition hidden inside it.
Reasons You’ll ♡ these moong bean sprouts
These homegrown moong bean sprouts are widely preferred and make a great breakfast or snacking option. Besides this, you will love these Mung bean sprouts as they are —
- Super easy to grow at home; no special training required
- No special equipment required
- Fresh and hygienically prepared at home
- Affordable way of incorporating proteins and healthy nutrients into the diet
- Kid-friendly, and
- Budget-friendly snack!
Sprouting is also beneficial because it makes legumes more digestible and delicious.
Besides being the best source of plant-based protein, mung bean sprouts also contain fewer calories and more anti-oxidants and essential amino acids.
So, dive into the art of sprouting 101 today and give your meals a flavorful, nutritious boost!
Homemade Sprouts Ingredient List
Moong lentils — This DIY guide to homemade moong bean sprouts has moong lentils as the base ingredient. Use fresh moong/ mung lentils for preparing the sprouts.
Water — For washing and a generous sprinkle now and then. Water keeps the beans moist and the germinating process going.
Homemade Moong Bean sprouts Recipe Tips and Variations
Fresh is best — Fresh beans and lentils bring out the best results for germinating mung bean sprouts; therefore, always choose the freshest ones for sprouting. Organic beans and lentils can be great options too.
Cleaning is an essential step — Washing the beans (seeds or legumes) before sprouting is necessary to ensure no debris or dirt is left on the grains. Rub the grains properly with your fingers and wash them clean under tap water. Rinse at least 2-3 times until the water runs clear.
Various ways of sprouting — You can easily grow the beans in a jar, tray, container, or even in an Instant Pot. However, you must maintain good hygiene and keep the germinating seeds moist yet ventilated to support better germination.
Sprouting under controlled conditions — Maintaining a controlled environment (warm and humid) is imperative for sprouting. A warm and humid climate works best for sprouting, but it also encourages the growth of harmful bacteria. Therefore, care must be taken to maintain proper hygiene while growing the beans.
The primary benefit of homegrown sprouts over store-bought ones is that you can control everything. Besides others, the jar/ container in which the beans are sprouted, the air-circulation, the hygiene factor (not many hands have touched the home-grown sprouts!), and a friendly environment eliminates the risk of foodborne illness in the mung bean sprouts.
Use a clean container — Ensure the container or equipment being used for sprouting is thoroughly cleaned. Better sanitation practices rule out the risk of contamination of the sprouts.
To maintain optimum hygiene — If you are using a muslin cloth for sprouting, ensure it is fresh and clean every time to keep cleanliness at optimum levels. You could also rinse them properly in between changing water and re-wrapping your sprouts.
For thicker bean shoots — Wrapping moong beans in muslin cloth produces thicker bean shoots. Tightly wrapping the beans in a cloth or applying firm pressure to the beans enables the growth of thicker shoots.
The most suitable place for sprouting — A warm spot with consistent light is ideal for germinating moong bean sprouts. So, choose a place in your house that has good ventilation and some warmth and is just perfect for sprouting. Avoid direct sunlight, though, as it will dry out the sprouts and hinder the germination process.
Rinsing periodically is imperative — Intermittent rinsing of the soaked or germinating beans is essential after every 8 -10 hours to prevent bacterial build-up. Use tap water for rinsing the seeds and drain them well. Ensure no excess water is trapped in the soaked/ germinating beans, as it may cause them to rot and release a foul smell.
The ideal temperature for germination — A temperature of 20° C should be maintained throughout the germination process as this is the perfect temperature for germination to take place. A higher temperature will encourage bacterial growth, and the sprouts will become moldy. Sprouts need a warm and damp environment to grow. Germinating seeds do not prefer light. So in winter, maintain a constant warm temperature and see your seeds germinate in desired time. Don’t forget to take precautionary measures (wash and change water frequently).
Easy hack to prevent drying — During summer, you may see that the seeds feel dry during the germination process. Just sprinkle a little water on the moong beans every few hours to prevent them from drying.
Factors that promote germination — Proper airflow and constant moistness are essential for proper germination. If the seeds are cramped together, the airflow gets restricted, and this hampers adequate germination. Excess water also slows the proper growth of the shoots and may lead to rotting. Therefore, throughout the germination process, ensure that the sprouts are moist and not wet. Secondly, if you are using cans for sprouting, do not cramp them into one jar. Split the seeds into two jars so that they get proper airflow. As such, choose taller jars and avoid smaller ones.
Dry the sprouts before storage — Store them after drying them on a kitchen paper towel to prevent the moong sprouts from rotting. You can even put them in a salad spinner to eliminate excess moisture.
Steam cooking or dry roasting — Even after taking all the precautions and ending up with some great sprouts, if you are worried about certain microorganisms on them, you can always steam cook or slightly dry roast your sprouts before consumption to eradicate any leftover bacteria. But don’t over-steam them, as they will lose their nutrients.
Sprouts are more digestible — Sprouting makes a bean or legume more digestible as the phytate breaks down, and the starchy endosperm also cracks to its more digestible form. So, if you’ve ever had trouble digesting a particular bean or legume, I highly suggest sprouting it before eliminating it from your diet completely. That’s not all; there is more to the sprouts.
It contains live enzymes and tons of dietary fiber that eliminates flatulence and gas-producing starches. These enzymes break down the food, making passing through the digestive tract easier.
Reduced lectins make the sprouts more digestible — Lectins are a kind of protein that binds to carbohydrates, making digestion more challenging. They are abundant in the outer seed coat of legumes and grains. When soaked and left for germination, the outer skin of the seed gets metabolized, and the lectins get deactivated.
Hence, you can say the lectins in the beans get converted into digestible protein, and you will see that your beans have sprouted and white shoots have grown out of them, at least 1½ – 2 cm in length. At this point, rinse them well and fry them. Now your sprouted beans are ready to be stored.
Let me know what you think!
With this DIY guide to homemade Mung bean sprouts, I am sure you will grow your bowlful of healthy sprouts with little effort.
So, now that you know how sprouting your most loved beans can be so easy and fun, let us quickly start with the wonderful sprouting process.
Should you make these moong bean sprouts, please let me know your thoughts by sharing your comment below.
And don’t forget to share it with your family and friends.
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Follow Step-by-step instructions below to make the best Homemade Moong Bean Sprouts
How to Make Sprouts at home
- 1 cup Green Mung Beans
- – – Water to rinse
- Sort through the moong beans to remove all the pebbles and gritty things.
- Rinse the beans under tap water. Rub the grains between your fingers to get rid of all the residues.
- Drain it well.
- Transfer the rinsed beans to a clean bowl. Soak the beans in enough water to cover them by about an inch. Cover and soak them in clean water for 6-8 hours or overnight.
- Soaking helps to soften the seeds and initiate the sprouting process.This is how the beans will look after soaking – swelled and doubled in size.
- After soaking, drain the water through the strainer, and rinse the seeds with fresh water.
- Transfer it to the same bowl. Add fresh water and allow the beans to soak for another 6-8 hours.Tip — Soaking for at least 6-8 hours helps the seeds rehydrate and begin germination. While soaking, make sure to keep the soaked beans covered in a warm place.
- The outer shell needs to break before the mung beans start sprouting. If any “white foam” float to the top during the soaking time, remove them with a spoon, rinse the beans, and continue sprouting. This will reduce the chances of harmful bacteria breeding.
- Ideally, the outer cover takes about 6-7 hours to break in a hot and humid environment. But if it doesn’t break in the given period, extend the soaking for another 2-4 hours. However, continue to rinse and drain the seeds 2-3 times a day until your sprouts reach the desired size.
- This is how the beans will look like after 12-16 hours. With the first sign of sprouts, remove beans from the water. Drain and rinse the beans with tap water.
- Transfer sprouts to a wet muslin cloth and place it over the strainer. Tip — Germinating moong bean sprouts in a colander lined with muslin cloth could be the best way, as it provides the proper airflow which is required for germinating the beans.
- Wrap the wet cheesecloth around the beans. Make sure the cloth is damp.
- Rest the strainer (containing beans) over a bowl. You can place a bowl of water underneath the colander to provide a moist environment. But the seeds may still dry out in the warm place and must be kept moist. Cover the colander with a damp cloth and sprinkle water every 2-3 hours to moisten the fabric.Tip — Keep the seeds moist; if they are dry, it will kill the sprouting process.
- Moong bean sprouts are ready.
- If you want your sprouts to grow longer, let them rest for one more day, and you can have sprouts like those pictured below. Once the seeds have fully sprouted, give them a final rinse, remove any unsprouted seeds, and enjoy them fresh or store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for later use.
HOW TO MAKE SPROUTS IN INSTANT POT
- Rinse the moong beans under tap water. Rub the grains in between your fingers to get rid of all the residues. Transfer the rinsed beans to a clean bowl. Soak the beans in enough water to cover the dal by about an inch. Make sure the grains are completely submerged in water. Soak the moong beans for 8-10 hours or overnight. Always use a large bowl to soak the beans as soaked and rehydrated moong beans will swell and double in size.
- Add 1/3 cup of water to the Instant Pot insert. Place an Instant Pot steamer basket in the insert. Add the soaked moong beans to the steamer basket. Cover the insert pot insert with a glass lid. Turn the Instant Pot ON. Select the “Yogurt” option on the front panel. The default setting is 8 hours; therefore, press the “+” option to set the time to 10 hours.After 10 hours, you will see tiny sprouts coming out of the moong beans. If you want longer sprouts, then please go ahead and proceed to the next step.
- Drain and change the water in the insert. Remove the steamer basket and rinse the sprouted beans thoroughly under tap water. Please don't rub the grains. Return the steamer basket to the Instant Pot insert.Cover it with the glass lid and set the timer for another 10 hours by selecting the “Yogurt” setting. After 10 hours, you will enjoy the perfectly sprouted moong beans.
- Enjoy these delicious and nutritious Instant Pot moong bean sprouts in salads, cutlets, and chilas.
HOW TO MAKE SPROUTS IN A JAR
- Wash and clean ¼ cup of assorted beans under tap water 2-3 times until the water runs clear. Transfer it to a clean jar, add enough water to soak the beans, and close the jar with the lid. Let it soak overnight.Tip — Grab a clean, wide-mouth jar and cover the opening with a mesh cloth or sprouting lid to create a perfect sprouting environment. This will ensure proper air circulation while keeping out dust and bugs.
- Next morning – drain the water and rinse the beans. Add fresh water and completely discard the water you had used to soak the beans earlier. Cover the mouth of the jar with a muslin cloth/cheesecloth and secure the jar with its lid rings (top removed).
- Place the jar in a warm place and let it soak for another 6-8 hours. During this soaking time, beans will expand and soak in water. After 8 hours, drain and rinse the beans with tap water. Sprouts after 18 hours.
- Remove the cloth and wash the beans under cold water. With the first sign of sprouts, remove sprouts from water. Drain all the water, transfer it back to the jar, and let it rest in a warm place for another 6-8 hours. Beans after 20 hours.
- Sprouts after 30 hours.
- You can include them in salads, soups, sandwiches, burgers, cutlets, paranthas, and chaats and even blended into smoothies for a healthy drink.