January 9, 2021

This is the best time of the year to grow sprouts inside.

Sprouts are seeds you let germinate in water and then eat, seeds and all. They work best with tiny seeds. Larger seeds are better grown in soil, compost or on mats as micro-greens.

Some people like eating sprouts with just a tiny germination showing. Others like them a bit taller, almost the size of microgreens.

I often create sprouts from dried beans by accident because I always soak beans before cooking them, and if they soak too long, they sprout. They’re delicious.

To grow your own sprouts, you can use any jar, bag or container covered by cheese cloth so that you can dump most of the water out. Mason jars work really well because you can use an old lid to hold the cheese cloth on top.

I have a fancy four-tray contraption that lets the water cover all the seeds evenly and end up in a tray at the bottom for easy emptying. If you have one of these, plan to empty the bottom tray several times a day and clean it every time you add water to the seeds to avoid mold.

Wet the container first. Then choose your seeds.

My Favourite Seeds to Sprout

My favourites seeds are basil, mustard, purple kohlrabi and kale, but just about any small seed can be sprouted. If they’re large, you might prefer to grow them in soil as microgreens. (More on that next week.)

Sprouting Instructions

Just layer some small seeds in the bottom and add water. Drain all of the water out to avoid mold.

Add water twice a day for the next few days. After four to six days, you’ll see sprouts. Keep watering until you’re ready to eat your sprouts.

Sprout Recipe Ideas

Add fresh sprouts to stir fries, salads, eggs, pizza, sandwiches and smoothies right away or leave them a few more days , until they grow a bit taller.

For a great winter meal, I love serving sprouts on mushrooms on toast. Just fry up some fresh mushrooms in olive oil with salt and cayenne pepper and serve them over buttered toast made from gluten-free bread and coated in hummus. Layer lots of sprouts on the toast and you have a really delicious breakfast or lunch.

Advice from other Canadians

Items to Try

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About the author 

Tracey Arial

Tracey Arial helps Canadians grow with notable nonfiction and urban agriculture.

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