Get dirty, have fun and grow more food with great gardening tips from real-life gardeners.
Mung beans, also known as bean sprouts, can be sprouted indoors anytime, and they take just five days to grow. Growing your own bean sprouts is a great way to get fresh food quickly, even in winter. You don’t even need any special kitchen equipment to do so. You can sprout the mung beans in a juice carton to keep the beans in the dark and encourage a crisper, whiter sprout. Our short video shows you how to do it, and here are the basic steps:
Rinse a half -cup of mung beans, then soak overnight or for at least 12 hours.
Wash out an empty juice carton with soapy water, and rinse. Nick holes into the top corners of the carton, just large enough for water (but not the beans) to drain out.
Drain the soaked beans, then pour them into the carton using a funnel. Fill with lukewarm water and screw on the lid. Turn the carton upside down to drain the water out through the holes.
Repeat the washing and draining process twice per day.
By the next day, all of the beans will have sprouted. Wash and drain your sprouts, once in the morning, and then again in the evening.
Your bean sprouts are now ready to eat! Cut the carton open to reveal the crisp, white sprouts.
Removing Bean Sprout Husks
Before eating your mung bean sprouts, skim off the bean husks. Put the sprouts in a bowl and fill with water. Comb the husks that float to the surface to one side, and then scoop them out. Remove the cleaned bean sprouts, leaving behind any husks that have sunk to the bottom.
Bean sprouts should store well for three days in the refrigerator.
More Resources for Growing Your Own Food
Our popular Vegetable Garden Planner can help you map out your garden design, space crops, know when to plant which crops in your exact location, and much more.
Need crop-specific growing information? Browse our Crops at a Glance Guide for advice on planting and caring for dozens of garden crops.
Watch more videos on growing food and other self-reliance, DIY topics on our Wiser Living Videos page.
Shelley Stonebrook is MOTHER EARTH NEWS magazine’s main gardening editor. She’s passionate about growing healthy, sustainable food and also runs Stonegrass Farms Soap Co. in her spare time. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest.