Sprouts contain more nutrients per calorie than any other type of food. Kids can sprout organic whole grains, beans, and seeds that will mature in 3 to 5 days. These sprouts do not need soil or sunshine, will grow in a small space, and cost pennies. Sprouts are the plant’s most nutritious stage with concentrated natural sources of vitamins, minerals, enzymes, and amino acids. In a jar with a lid, kids can create a miniature kitchen garden of tiny power packed plants. Sprouts are yummy in salads, sandwiches, and stir fries.
Mung bean and soybean sprouts, popular in stir fries, contain nearly 50% more protein than their dry seeds. Through the process of sprouting, the starches and proteins in grains and beans are broken down into simple sugars and amino acids, making them easy to digest. Kids need to make sure that the seeds are organic and untreated. Sprouts magnify all the essential nutrients of the seed during the sprouting process. The most common seeds to sprout are organic alfalfa, broccoli, radish, clover, mung, soy, lentil, and wheatgrass.
Kids can grow their sprouts in a glass jar on the kitchen counter. For grains and beans use a ½ cup, for seeds, like quinoa, alfalfa, or chia start with 2 tablespoons. Kids can cover the jar with cheesecloth or a screen lid and add 3 parts pure filtered water to the jar and let them soak out of direct sunlight at room temperature for 8 to 12 hours. Pour out the water and rinse them several times with fresh water. Kids can leave the well drained seeds to sprout by placing the jar upside down in a bowl on an angle so the sprouts can continue to drain and air can flow through the screen lid. Rinse once or twice a day for 3 to 5 days. Fresh sprouts keep in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Kids can enjoy sprouts as a bright, crunchy, energy filled addition to a salad or sandwich or a welcome addition to breads, egg rolls, veggie burgers, and soups.