An Essential Guide to Sprouting

Contributor: Ashley Neese
Photographer: Ashley Neese
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Now that we are well into the Spring season it’s time to get sprouting! I love to sprout, especially tiny seeds that grow into glorious, nutrient dense greens in just a matter of days. It is deeply healing to connect to nourishing ourselves in this way. Sprouting is a fun way to deepen our relationship to the miracle of food and it couldn’t be easier. Today I’m sharing loads of info to get you started and a beautiful sprout guide made just for you! Sprouting has a host of benefits from alkalizing to cleansing to mineralizing. It always amazes me how these seemingly small plants pack such a powerful punch of nutrition. 

A variety of seeds, legumes, and grains can be sprouted. All it takes is a little love, patience, and some simple equipment that you probably already have in your kitchen. For soaking grains I like to add a little lemon juice to the soak water to help with digestion and nutrient absorption. You could also add apple cider vinegar, keifr or whey. My general rule of thumb is 1 c. grain to 2 Tbsp. acid.

Today I’m going to share how to grow sprouts from alfalfa and clover seeds. The process is very similar to legumes and grains, it just takes an extra day or two depending on the weather.

Enjoy your sprouts on top of soups, in salads, as an accompaniment to your favorite bounty bowl, or just eat them by the handful – they are that yummy! Many of my pregnant clients are concerned about eating sprouts because so many websites claim they are dangerous. I advise to make them yourself so that you can be sure they are clean, super fresh, and well rinsed.

Be sure to get your seeds from a good company like Mountain Rose Herbs. This makes a huge difference in the quality of your sprouts. You will also need a glass jarnut milk bag or sprouting lid. These days I am using my nut milk bags for sprouting, it’s so easy! Be sure you’ve got a rubber band or two on hand as well.


Serves 10

Ingredients //

  • 1 Tbsp. alfafa seeds

  • 2 Tbsp. clover seeds

Method //

Add the seeds to two separate, well cleaned jars. Place a nut milk bag on top of each jar and secure with a rubber band. You could use a sprouting lid in it’s place.

Fill each jar with water and swish seeds around. Drain. Repeat 3 x with each jar to be sure seeds are well rinsed.

Fill each jar with water to cover the seeds and set on the counter to soak for 6 hours. Rinse one time at the 3 hour mark and fill again with water to cover and leave it on the counter to soak for another 3 hours. Drain, rinse and then turn jars on an angle to begin the sprouting process.

Rinse the seeds and newly forming sprouts every 6-8 hours and keep them on an angle until they are finished sprouting. Harvest the sprouts at 1 – 1 1/2 inches. To harvest, gently pull sprouts out of the jars and rinse them well in a mesh strainer. Let them drain on the counter ina little sunlight for a few hours. The sun light will help them turn green, it’s activates the chlorophyll which is what we want!

Keep these beauties in a dry glass jar in the fridge for up to 6 days.

For your reference:

1 Tbsp. alfafa seeds = 4 c. sprouts

2 Tbsp. clover seeds = 1- 1/2 c. sprouts