I know we’ve all heard about the incredible health benefits of foods like quinoa, beans, nuts and seeds. They’re stuffed full of almost every nutrient your body needs. But that’s old news… What you might not have heard of is sprouted foods. Soaking and sprouting can double, or even triple, the nutritional benefits of your favourite super-foods. Hooray energy!
Have no idea what I’m on about? Here’s a quick run-down.
Basically, the compounds in nuts, grains and legumes that stop them from germinating can be damaging to our digestive system (think about that bloaty, uncomfortable feeling you sometimes get after eating a dish full of beans). These compounds may also prevent your body from absorbing essential nutrients. What a waste!
Soaking and sprouting essentially mimics the process of germination, which unlocks a ton of health benefits! Vitamins sky-rocket, protein and amino-acid content increases, minerals are made easier to absorb and there’s a whole heap of pressure taken off your digestive system. But the best part about sprouting? It’s actually fun (and tasty!)
It’s super easy too. Here’s how to do it:
Choose a seed, legume or grain that you want to sprout (my favourites are quinoa and broccoli) and place them in a mason jar – you can get yours here. Fill the mason jar with water, pop the lid on and leave them to soak overnight.
Replace the lid of your mason jar with a thin cloth or piece of mesh and drain the water. You can use a rubber band or string to secure the cloth. Leave the jar at a 45 degree angle in a bowl with the cloth-covered side. This will allow for air to flow properly so your grains can grow!
You’ll need to repeat this rinsing process twice a day for about one to four days before your sprouts are ready.
3. Sprout and Store
Your sprouts are ready when they grow a little tail, about as long as the original grain or legume. You can enjoy them straight away, or store them in an airtight container for up to four days.
They may be small but these little guys are seriously powerful. I love throwing them on top of sandwiches or salads. You might even want to blend them into your favourite green smoothie!
Need a little more inspiration? Check out these adorable ideas…