Hate broccoli? Well, what if we told you you could reap all of the health benefits of this green cruciferous veggie without actually having to eat it. It’s true—and your 8-year-old self would definitely approve of this plan.
Even if you actually enjoy broccoli, that doesn’t mean you can get your kids to munch on the nutrient powerhouse it or get it onto your own grown-up plate as often as you’d like. But broccoli sprouts, on the other hand… they can be a real game-changer. See, the sprouts can contain up to 50 more cancer fighting compounds than broccoli and offer a much less intense, cabbagey flavor—thus, they can be seamlessly tucked into other tasty dishes the whole family will enjoy (check out a few of our favorite ideas below). On top of all of that, broccoli sprouts—a.k.a. “baby broccoli”—can help keep asthma in check, lower your risk for heart disease, and lower blood pressure. The best part? They’re really pretty easy to grow at home, so you can always have a supply on hand. Here’s how to make it happen.
What you’ll need:
- 1 quart-size glass jar
- 1 sharpie
- plastic needlework canvas
- broccoli sprouting seeds
- a tablespoon measure
- 1 liquid measuring cup
- 1 salad spinner
- paper towels
- a zip-top plastic bag or storage container
What to do:
Make your jar:
- Trace the lid of the jar onto the plastic canvas.
- Cut out traced canvas circles.
- Insert them into the Mason jar lid ring.
- Screw lid onto quart Mason jar.
Soak the seeds:
- Add 3 Tablespoons of seeds to the jar.
- Add ½ Cup cool (60-70*) water.
- Mix seeds up and push floaters down.
- Allow to soak 6 hours out of direct sunlight at room temperature.
Rinse and Drain Seeds:
- Rinse thoroughly with cool water.
- Drain thoroughly!
- Replace out of direct sunlight at room temperature.
- Continue rinsing and draining every 8-12 hours for three days.
- At the end of the day, rinse and drain, then move to an area with indirect sunlight.
- Continue rinsing and draining every 8-12 hours for one day.
- Transfer the sprouts to a big pot or bowl. Fill with cool water.
- Loosen the sprouts by pulling it apart with your fingers. Hulls will rise to the surface.
- Pull sprouts to the bottom to make room for the hulls to rise.
- Skim the hulls off the surface of the water.
- Transfer to a salad spinner and spin to reduce excess moisture.
- Pour sprouts onto paper towels and pat dry. Let dry for 3-4 hours.
- Transfer the sprouts to a plastic bag or sealed container.
- Store in the fridge or freezer.
How to enjoy them:
Recipe suggestions by Nicole McLaughlin
In a smoothie: Combine 1c spinach, ⅔ c pineapple, ½ c sprouts, 1 banana, ⅓ c orange juice and 1 cup ice in blender. Puree until smooth.
On a sandwich: Layer hummus, grilled vegetables, pickled onion, sliced tomato and sprouts between 2 slices multigrain bread.
In a salad: Toss together cucumber, matchstick carrots, diced avocado, sprouts, and peanut dressing. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.