Bean sprouts are a satisfying, crunchy ingredient that can be used in everything from soups to salads. They are low-calorie and have a fresh, light flavor. There are many beans that can be used to make bean sprouts. However, the most common varieties are Vigna radiata (mung beans) and soybeans.
Table of Contents
- 1 What are bean sprouts?
- 2 How to grow bean seeds?
- 3 Nutrition of bean sprouts
- 4 7 Different Types of Bean Sprouts
- 5 How to cook bean sprouts
- 6 How to Store Bean Sprouts
What are bean sprouts?
Bean sprouts are edible silvery-white, plump shoots that have two small yellow leaves on one side. Bean sprouts are the result of germinating mung beans. Although there are many beans you can sprout for culinary purposes, the most widely used is mung. They have a crispy texture and a nutty taste. They are great for raw and cooked applications.
The Fabaceae (legumes) have been cultivating the mung bean plant since ancient times. It is a staple in Asian cuisine due to its nutrition and versatility. They are easily incorporated into many Asian and Indian dishes, including those that include rice or noodles, because of their availability all year.
How to grow bean seeds?
This is how you make bean sprouts.
While you can buy sprouts from your local health food shop, it is best to sprout your own beans in order to get the maximum benefit. It’s very simple, we swear! It doesn’t matter what kind of bean you use, we prefer greenish-capped mung beans.
Pour 1/3 cup of water into a large-mouth jar and cover it with a lid.
Let the beans soak for around 8 hours.
You can poke a few holes into the lid. You can store them in a dark corner of your house (such as in a cabinet).
Once the jar has been soaked, flip it upside down and drain off any excess water. Place the jar on its back and then return it to the dark place.
The beans and sprouts should be rinsed the next day. This process should be repeated for 5 days until the sprouts reach maturity.
Next, rinse the sprouts to remove their seed coats. You should eat them quickly as they can go bad quickly.
How to make bean sprouts with plastic bottles
Before implementing how to grow bean sprouts as well as how to grow clean vegetables at home, you need to prepare the following tools:
- 1 ounce of whole green beans
- Plastic bottle
- Sharp stick and knife for punching
- Clean water
- Step 1: Soak green beans with skin in clean water for about 6-8 hours.
- Step 2: Take out the beans and wash them gently.
- Step 3: Use a sharp stick and knife to punch holes in the bottom of the plastic bottle for drainage.
- Step 4: Drop the beans into the plastic bottle, and cover with soft tissue.
- Step 5: Dip the plastic bottle into the basin of water.
- Step 6: Cover the plastic bottle with a black plastic bag or place the bottle in a very dark place.
- Step 7: In the morning, evening, and before lifting each bottle of bean sprouts, dip them in water for about 5 minutes, then tie the bag and wait for 2-3 days to harvest the bean sprouts.
Just put a piece of cloth on the bottom of the perforated plastic bottle, seal it with a black plastic bag, and water it 3 times a day. After 3 days you have lush bean sprouts to use for meals for your family. Make it yourself at home. Here is a Video of DIY Garden Ideas
How to make bean sprouts with a styrofoam box
- Green beans: 100g
- Styrofoam box bin, large napkins, clean sand
Wash the green beans, remove the flat and deep seeds, then soak the beans in cold water for 6-8 hours (if you want to save time, you can also soak the beans in warm water with the ratio of 3 boiling 2 cold for 1 hour). Then use clean water to rinse.
Punch 5-6 small holes in the bottom of the Styrofoam box to drain the water, then cover the hole with a paper towel so that the sand doesn’t fall out.
Spread sand into the Styrofoam box, spread evenly (thickness of the sand layer is about 3cm), and spray water to moisten the sand. Note that there is no need to compact the sand too tightly. In addition, you can also replace sand with clean, porous soil or coir.
Wet a paper towel, spread it on the sand surface, then spread it evenly (do not spread it close to the edge of the box) and spray steam to create moisture for the Styrofoam box and close the lid of the box, keep it in a cool place, without sunlight.
Use a sprayer to water the bean sprouts twice a day.
After 3 days, you can harvest bean sprouts incubated with a styrofoam box.
Nutrition of bean sprouts
Most beans can be used to make bean sprouts, however, chickpeas and lentils are the two most commonly consumed. Bean sprouts are available in most grocery shops.
You can also grow them at home. Bean sprouts will grow quickly from seed if they have been kept in a cool place and in a sealed container. After two to three days, they will start growing with nightly watering.
Bean sprouts, no matter how you grow or buy them, pack a nutritious punch.
Bean sprouts are healthy for many reasons. From the high level of vitamin C to their protein and fiber content, they are also very nutritious. Here are some benefits of adding bean sprouts into your diet.
Support for blood pressure
High blood pressure (also known as hypertension) can be prevented or treated by bean sprouts thanks to protein building blocks called proteins, and peptides. When seeds sprout, high levels of peptides are created. In some studies, they have been shown to lower blood pressure.
Prevention of Cancer
It is possible that the proteins and other peptides found in bean sprouts can help to reduce your risk of getting cancer. Research has shown that these nutrients can slow down the growth and spread of cancer cells. This includes those associated with breast, stomach, and intestinal cancers.
Bean sprouts provide insoluble dietary fiber, which aids digestion. It quickly moves through the digestive system, picking up and carrying waste products as it goes. Fiber “cleanses” the colon. It acts almost like an internal scrubber. For constipation prevention, it is important to eat enough insoluble fiber.
Bean sprouts contain high amounts of antioxidants that may help prevent you from developing AMD (age-related macular damage). AMD is the most common cause of vision impairment in adults older than 55. AMD risk may be reduced with antioxidants.
Also, beans sprouts are high in vitamin C which may help to prevent cataracts. Research shows that those who have been consuming high amounts of vitamin C for ten years or more are less likely to need cataract surgery.
Bean sprouts can balance cholesterol and improve your overall health. Research has shown that sprouts can help lower “bad” LDL cholesterol which is responsible for plaque buildup in the arteries. Bean sprouts can also raise levels of “good” HDL cholesterol which helps to clear fatty deposits.
There is evidence that sprouts may lower triglycerides, another type of blood fat. If they are present in sufficient amounts, triglycerides can lead to heart disease.
Nutrients per serving
These nutrients are found in one cup of mung beans sprouts:
- Calories: 31
- Protein: 3 grams
- Fat: 0 grams
- Carbohydrates: 6 grams
- Fiber: 2 grams
- Sugar: 4 grams
Bean sprouts are an excellent source of antioxidants, which protect against cell damage and may reduce the risk of cancer and heart disease. Bean sprouts contain specific vitamins and minerals such as:
- Vitamin C
Bean sprouts have a high amount of vitamin C which gives you 23% of your daily recommended intake. You also get calcium which is essential for healthy teeth and bones. They also have a lot of iron which is a component of healthy and happy blood.
Warnings about eating bean sprouts
Sprouts are a highly perishable food.
They are also at high risk for bacterial infections, such as E.coli and Salmonella. Because of the humid environment, they need to grow, coli can develop.
Both Salmonella and E.E.coli can cause food poisoning. This can trigger diarrhea, vomiting, and abdominal pain.
26 people reported that they had eaten sprouts during a 2011 diarrhea epidemic in Germany
It is recommended that sprouts be washed thoroughly before being eaten, particularly if they are to be eaten raw. Only cook sprouts for people with weak immune systems such as children, pregnant women, and older adults.
7 Different Types of Bean Sprouts
Sprouting is a natural process that leads to the germination and growth of seeds, grains, vegetables, legumes, and other plant materials.
There are many varieties of bean sprouts, which are common ingredients in Asian dishes such as stir-fries and salads.
There are many types of bean sprouts that you can buy at your local grocery or grow yourself.
Studies have shown that sprouting can increase the nutritional value and quality of foods by increasing the availability and quality of certain nutrients such as protein.
Moreover, sprouts are nutritional powerhouses that have many health-promoting benefits.
These are seven types of bean sprouts that you might be interested in.
Kidney bean sprouts
The common bean, the kidney bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.), is a variety that comes from the common bean. Its name derives from its kidney-like appearance.
They are high in protein, low in calories, and low in carbs. A cup of kidney bean sprouts (184g) will provide you with enough to make a full meal.
- Calories: 53
- Carbohydrates: 8 grams
- Protein: 8 grams
- Fat: 1 gram
- Vitamin C: 79% Daily Value (DV).
- Folate: 27% DV
- Iron: 8% from the DV
These sprouts also contain melatonin which your body produces to regulate your sleep cycle. Melatonin also has antioxidant properties, which protect your body against harmful compounds that can cause cell damage.
Your body naturally produces melatonin, but it decreases as you age. Research suggests that lower levels could be associated with health problems as you get older.
Many studies have shown that melatonin intake is associated with a lower risk of developing chronic diseases such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
A 12-year study of 370 women found that people with lower levels of melatonin had a significantly higher chance of developing type 2 diabetes.
Another study has shown that rats receiving extracts from kidney bean sprouts increased their levels of melatonin by 16%.
Further research on humans is however needed.
The best way to enjoy steamed kidney beans is to cook. They can be boiled, sautéed, stir-fried, or tossed in a pan. Then, you can add them to stews and pasta.
Lentils can be sprouted easily to increase their nutritional value.
One cup (77g) of lentil sprouts packets:
- Calories: 82
- Carbohydrates: 17 grams
- Protein: 7 grams
- Fat: 0.5g
- Vitamin C: 14% DV
- Folate: 19% DV
- Iron: 14%
Lentils’ phenolic contents are increased by 122% during sprouting. The group of antioxidant compounds known as phenolic compounds may have anticancer, anti-inflammatory, and antiallergenic properties.
Lentil sprouts have a higher antioxidant capacity which can reduce LDL (bad cholesterol), which can increase your risk of developing heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
A study of 39 patients with type 2 diabetes over 8 weeks found that eating 3/4 cup (60g) lentil sprouts per day reduced LDL (bad) and triglyceride (good) cholesterol while increasing HDL levels (good) compared to the control group.
This finding requires further research.
Lentil sprouts are a great choice for raw or cooked, unlike kidney bean sprouts. You can add them to your favorite sandwich or soup, or even to steamed vegetables.
Pea sprouts are known for their sweet taste. You can sprout both green and yellow peas.
They are high in nutrition and come in a 1 cup (120g) package.
- Calories: 149
- Carbohydrates: 33g
- Protein: 11 grams
- Fat: 1 gram
- Vitamin C: 14% DV
- Folate: 43% DV
- Iron: 15% of the DV
Pea sprouts have twice as much folate (B9) as raw peas. Birth abnormalities such as neural tube defects and heart disease can be caused by a deficiency in this vitamin.
Neural tube defects are when the bones around your child’s skull or spine don’t develop correctly. This can lead to the brain and spinal cord being exposed at birth.
Research shows that women of reproductive age are less likely to develop neural tube defects from folic acid supplements.
Folate-rich foods such as sprouted beans are also recommended by health professionals.
Pea sprouts tend to be more tender than other sprouts. Pea sprouts are great for salads and can be stir-fried.
Chickpea sprouts can be made quickly and only take 2 days to germinate.
They are rich in nutrients and have a higher protein content than other sprouts. One cup (140g) of chickpeas sprouts provides the following.
- Calories: 480
- Carbohydrates: 84g
- Protein: 36 grams
- 8g of fat
- Vitamin C: 5% DV
- Iron: 40% of the DV
It has been found that sprouting can increase chickpeas’ total isoflavones by more than 100-fold. Isoflavones can be described as a phytoestrogen, a plant-based compound that mimics the estrogen hormone.
Because estrogen levels begin to decline when women reach menopause (and are more susceptible to osteoporosis, high blood cholesterol, and other symptoms), eating phytoestrogen-rich foods can help lower menopausal symptoms.
After a 35-day experiment in rats, it was found that chickpea sprout extracts daily significantly decreased bone loss.
Another study in rats found that fresh chickpea sprouts daily intake decreased total cholesterol and blood triglyceride while increasing HDL (good cholesterol) levels. This suggests that chickpeas sprouts could help to prevent heart disease.
Human research is still needed. You can eat sprouted chickpeas raw for a nutritious snack, or blend them to make raw hummus. You can make soups and veggie burgers with them.
Mung bean sprouts
Mung bean sprouts are one of the most popular bean sprouts.
They are made from mung beans which are mostly cultivated in East Asia but are also very popular in Western restaurants and shops.
These are extremely low in calories, and only 1 cup (104g) is required.
- Calories: 31
- Carbohydrates: 6 grams
- Protein: 3 grams
- Vitamin C: 15% of DV
- Folate: 16% DV
- Iron: 5% from the DV
Sprouting can increase mung bean’s flavonoid, vitamin C, and other nutrients by up to 7 and 24 percent, respectively. This boosts their antioxidant capabilities.
Research has shown that these sprouts may have anticancer properties by fighting free radical damage.
Similar results were obtained in a test tube study using human cells that had been treated with the extract. However, there was no damage to healthy cells.
Nevertheless, human research is essential.
Mung bean sprouts are an Asian staple and can be used in dishes such as fried rice or spring rolls.
Soybean sprouts can be found in many Korean dishes. They are grown by sprouting soybeans.
One cup (70g) of soy sprouts packets:
- Calories: 85
- Carbohydrates: 7 grams
- Protein: 9 grams
- Fat 5 grams
- Vitamin C: 12% of DV
- Folate: 30% of DV
- Iron: 8% from the DV
Sprouting reduces soybeans’ levels of phytic acid. This is an antinutrient that binds minerals like iron and impairs their absorption. Soy milk and tofu made with sprouts contain up to 59% & 56% less phytic acids, respectively than products that are not sprouted.
Soybean sprouts could make non-heme Iron, the type of iron found naturally in plants, more readily available to your body.
If your iron levels are low you won’t be able to produce enough hemoglobin, the protein found in red blood cells that transports oxygen throughout the body. Iron deficiency can result in anemia.
A 6-month study of 288 girls suffering from iron deficiency was conducted. It found that people who consumed 3 ounces (100ml) of sprouted milk daily had significantly higher levels of ferritin. This is the protein that stores iron in your system.
Similar results were observed in rats suffering from this condition. A 2-week study found that the soybean sprout supplement increased hemoglobin levels by 2%.
Sprouted soybeans could be used to treat and prevent this type of anemia. However, further research is needed.
Soybean sprouts are crunchy and have a nutty flavor. They are delicious in soups and stews and can be cooked more often.
Adzuki bean sprouts
Adzuki beans, a small red bean that is cultivated in East Asia, are very similar to mung beans.
One cup (133g) of adzuki beans sprouts packs
- Calories: 466
- Carbohydrates: 84g
- Protein: 31 grams
- Fat: 1 gram
- Vitamin C: 17% DV
- Iron: 40% of the DV
Sprouted adzuki beans increase their phenolic antioxidant level by 25%, as with all sprouted beans. Sinapic acid is the most prominent phenolic compound found in these sprouts.
Sinapic acid is known for its many health-promoting properties. It has improved blood sugar control, and anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and anticancer effects.
Animal research suggests that sinapic acid reduces insulin resistance and high blood sugar in diabetic rats.
It is not known if adzuki bean sprouts have the same effect on humans. More research is needed.
The taste of Adzuki bean sprouts is nutty and can be used raw in salads, wraps, and smoothies. They can also be cooked in soups.
How to cook bean sprouts
There are many ways to cook bean sprouts.
Bean sprouts are available in two forms: raw and cooked. You can cook them in stir-fry recipes or add them to a variety of vegetables, such as zucchini, carrots, and bell peppers. Bean sprouts will be found in Asian restaurants as an ingredient for spring rolls and other meat-and-vegetable dishes.
Bean sprouts can be tossed on salads at home, or you can keep it simple. Bean sprouts can quickly spoil, so it is important to keep them in the refrigerator.
Look for bean sprouts that are shiny, white, and have yellow tips when buying them. Avoid bean sprouts that have a musty or slimy taste. You can check the freshness by splitting a bean sprout in half if you are unsure. A fresh bean sprout should make a snapping sound when it breaks.
Here are some other ways that you can include bean sprouts in your diet.
- Bean sprouts can be added to salads.
- For extra crunch, add bean sprouts to your favorite sandwich.
- Stir-fry bean shoots with noodles, tofu, or meat. You can also add your choice of vegetables.
- Order Vietnamese spring rolls made with bean sprouts.
Classic Bean Sprout Stir Fry
You may have ever made fried noodles using bean sprouts, and left behind a lot of bean sprouts. This bean sprout stir-fry is the perfect way to use up large quantities of bean sprouts.
You’ll find bean sprout stir fry in Vietnamese households. Even though it may not seem very appealing, it tastes great. To complement my other Vietnamese dishes, you can make this side dish. It has big health benefits and great flavor.
- 1 lb (450 g) bean sprouts
- 2 tablespoons peanut oil
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 2 green onions, sliced
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar (or sugar)
- 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
- 2 teaspoons soy sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon dark soy sauce (Optional)
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- Wash the beans sprouts well to remove any stringy roots. Then rinse them with cold water. Squeeze out all water. Let them dry. You can gently dry the bean sprouts with paper towels if they are still very moist.
- Combine all the sauce ingredients and place them in a bowl.
- Heat the oil until hot. Add the garlic. Continue to fry the garlic until it begins to brown.
- Add the green onions. Stir for a few seconds to release the scent.
- Bring the heat up to high. Cook for 1 minute, tossing every once in a while.
- Continue cooking the beans sprouts for 2-3 minutes more. You can taste the bean sprouts, and add more salt if you like.
- Transfer everything onto a large plate. Serve immediately as a side dish.
- Serving: 1 serving,
- Calories: 114kcal,
- Carbohydrates: 7.2g,
- Protein: 5.3g, Fat: 8.5g,
- Saturated Fat: 1.4g,
- Sodium: 740mg,
- Potassium: 253mg,
- Fiber: 0.3g,
- Sugar: 1g,
- Calcium: 32mg,
- Iron: 1mg
Sauteed Bean Sprouts
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 scallion, chopped
- 300g bean sprouts
- 200g spinach
- 100g fresh mushrooms, sliced into bite sizes
- 150g firm tofu, diced
- 4 tablespoons soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons vinegar
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1⁄2 cup water
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- Combine the mixture of water and vinegar with the sugar and sesame seed oil in a small bowl.
- In the wok heat the canola oils and add the garlic cloves and scallions.
- Mix the mushrooms with half the mixture. Simmer for 3 minutes until the mushrooms become tender.
- In a large skillet, saute the vegetables.
- Add the tofu to the saucepan. Let it simmer for one minute.
- Serving Size: 1 (175) g
- Servings Per Recipe: 4
- Calories: 140.7
- Calories from Fat 63g 45 %
- Total Fat 7g 10 %
- Saturated Fat 0.9g 4 %
- Cholesterol 0mg 0 %
- Sodium 1058.1mg 44 %
- Total Carbohydrate 12.7g 4 %
- Dietary Fiber 3.4g 13 %
- Sugars 7.6g 30 %
- Protein 10.2g 20 %
How to Store Bean Sprouts
Bean sprouts taste best when they are fresh, as I said earlier. Bean sprouts are best enjoyed fresh.
These are some ways you can store bean sprouts at home.
This is the simplest and most common way to store bean sprouts.
- You will first need to wash them in cold water.
- Take the water out of the sprouts using a large colander.
- Make some paper towels and place them on a flat, clean surface.
- You can add layers depending on how many bean sprouts you wish to store.
- Place the bean sprouts on top and roll the towel, sealing the sprouts in.
- The sprouts’ remaining moisture will dampen the paper towel. This will allow the sprouts to stay fresher for a bit longer.
- Keep your Ziplock sealed and keep it in the vegetable freezer.
Use Icy Water
You can also use very cold, icy water. This allows bean sprouts to be stored for longer periods of time than if they were in a plastic bag.
- Use cold water to wash the bean sprouts, removing all dirt and residue.
- Place the sprouts in a round container.
- When moving the sprout, be careful not to use too much force.
- You will need to add a lot of ice water (the ones from the freezer), so make sure you prepare it in advance.
- Make sure that all sprouts are immersed in water.
- Seal the container by closing the lid
- Water should be changed at least twice per day. Also, ensure that the temperature is maintained at a constant low.
Add Some Lemon
The next step is to add some lemon slices to the water. Although this isn’t a common method, it works.
- Use cold water to wash your sprouts.
- Place them in an airtight container with a lid.
- It is recommended that you use glass or steel containers.
- Fill the container with cold water and place the bean sprouts in it.
- Be sure to cover all areas of the bean sprouts with water.
- Take your lemon and wash it. Slice the lemon into thin wheels.
- Sprinkle the lemon slices on top. This will ensure that the sprouts stay fresh for a longer time.
- Keep the bean sprouts fresh in the refrigerator by sealing the container.