The Magical Fruit {Beans Part 2 – How to Sprout Them}

In the past month, a few of my friends have asked me how to sprout beans. Finally I’ve gotten around to writing up a post about it. If you are wondering why I sprout my beans, you can go back and read The Magical Fruit {Beans Part 1 – Why Sprout Them?}.

So, without further ado, here’s the process of sprouting beans:

Step 1: Remove damaged beans.

Pretty self explanatory. Most people say to remove split beans, but I usually don’t bother. Just take out the ones that are a strange color, moldy, or have weird spots or crinkly skins.

Step 2: Soak.

Place the beans in a large bowl or pot and cover with water. I usually use about twice as much water as I have dried beans. For instance, if I measured out 3 cups of beans, then I would cover them with 6 cups of water. Cover with a paper towel and place out of direct sunlight. Soak the beans over night, or for at least 8 hours. The beans should about double in size, soaking up almost all of the water. 
How to Sprout Beans by Raia's Recipes

Step 3: Rinse and drain.

In the morning, or whenever your 8-12 hours are up, drain off the soaking water and rinse the beans with clean, lukewarm water. Drain well and replace in bowl or pot. Make sure the pot you place them in allows for air flow. Replace paper towel and set beans back out of direct sunlight. 
How to Sprout Beans by Raia's Recipes

Step 4: Sprout…

Let the beans sit in the bowl, out of direct sunlight for 2-3 days, or until the tails are about 1/4 inch long. Make sure to rinse the beans at least twice a day (or every 12 hours). I tend to rinse mine 3 times a day, just to make sure they don’t get stinky. After rinsing the beans, drain them well, pour them back into the pot, recover with paper towel and place back out of direct sunlight. You should be able to see little tails by the end of the first day. But remember – some beans take a little longer to sprout than others, so be patient!
How to Sprout Beans by Raia's Recipes
End of day 1
How to Sprout Beans by Raia's Recipes
Morning of day 3

Step 5: Eat!

Even though sprouting beans increases their nutrients and digestibility, they are still basically raw and eating large amounts of raw beans regularly without cooking them is not recommended. Most raw sprouts contain something called hemagglutinins, which inhibit the absorption of proteins and fats. These are destroyed by cooking. 
The least digestible beans are soybeans and kidney beans, and they should definitely not be eaten raw. Chickpeas (a.k.a. garbanzo beans) are the most digestible of any bean, and the only one that I would recommend using raw with any regularity. This is not to say that if you are using your sprouted beans in something baked you must also boil them first! One or the other is fine. 🙂

A Few Helpful Hints:

1 – Every time you rinse and drain the beans, sort through them again, removing any that may have gone bad while sprouting.
2 – Some beans, like great northerns, seem to go bad the easiest when sprouting, so rinse and drain them more frequently and watch them carefully.
3 – It’s best to use the beans as soon to day 3 of sprouting as possible so they don’t go bad. If you still haven’t been able to use them by day 5, just boil the rest of them and freeze until you can find a use, or store them covered in water.
4 – When sprouted, beans about triple in volume. So remember: when soaking 3 cups of beans, you’ll end up with about 9 cups of sprouted ones!
Easy bean recipes to enjoy:

{This post is linked to Fight Back Friday and Tasty Traditions.}


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