Although most people are very familiar with broccoli, another way to get this vegetable in your diet is to eat broccoli sprouts. Broccoli sprouts are available as a plant and in supplement form, and there are a lot of great reasons to give broccoli sprouts a try even if you’re not a big fan of full-grown, traditional broccoli.
Here’s a look at what broccoli sprouts are and how you can eat them and even grow your own at home.
The Basics of Broccoli Sprouts
The easiest way to understand broccoli sprouts is to think of them as baby broccoli plants. The sprouts are actual, young broccoli plants that are just three to five days old. They are harvested before the plant reaches full maturity and can be eaten raw or cooked.
Broccoli sprouts look like small, green leaves with white stems. They are just a few inches long and attached to the seeds.
Nutrients in Broccoli Sprouts
What broccoli sprouts lack in bold flavor, they make up in nutrition in a big way. This form of the vegetable has a mild taste but squeezes a lot of vitamins and minerals into a very small package. Broccoli sprouts contain vitamin C and a phytochemical called sulforaphane, and they are easily absorbed in the body. You’ll also get fiber, protein, vitamin A, and calcium when you eat broccoli sprouts.
Easy Ways to Try Broccoli Sprouts
Broccoli sprouts are most commonly eaten raw without any cooking necessary at all. Raw broccoli sprouts add texture to salads, sandwiches, and wraps. They often have an earthy taste but sometimes very little taste at all. This is an advantage if you want to get the nutrition of broccoli but don’t care for the strong taste of fully grown broccoli.
Another option is to cook broccoli sprouts with other vegetables that you are preparing for stir-fry dishes and casseroles. Broccoli sprouts are excellent additions to noodle dishes, smoothies, or just on their own as a snack.
You can also get the full nutritional benefit of broccoli sprouts with Seagate Broccoli Sprouts Capsules, an all-natural dietary supplement that we make by growing our own organic broccoli. We harvest our broccoli sprouts by hand before they reach maturity to retain the maximum phytonutrients. This is a great alternative for people who don’t have time to prepare fresh broccoli or broccoli sprouts because you can swallow the capsules whole or open them to sprinkle the powder into soups and salads.
Growing Your Own Broccoli Sprouts
You can often find broccoli sprouts at health food stores and farmers’ markets for a low cost. But as a DIY project and to understand them even better, you can grow your own broccoli sprouts at home.
The process of growing sprouts involves soaking broccoli seeds in water overnight, transferring them to a Mason jar using a strainer, rinsing them, and allowing them to start sprouting. During the sprouting process, the seeds prefer indirect light and need rinsing twice per day. Sprouts are typically ready to harvest within about four to five days. After a final rinse, transfer the harvested sprouts to a container and keep them in the fridge for up to five days. Broccoli sprouts are best when eaten fresh, kept cool, and finished within a few days.