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Sprouting 101: Chickpea Snacks

01 April

sprouted chickpea textIf you’re looking for extra Real Foods nourishment without having to order a new, exotic, expensive “miracle food” then sprouting is perfect for you!

To sprout, you take dried seeds and coax them into starting a plant.  When the seeds are soft and tailed, in about 2-4 days, you eat them.

There are a few reasons why this process is amazing and awesome.  First off, you don’t need any special equipment, growing lights, or even a trowel; you need jars and cheesecloth {or another fine mesh or mesh bags} to put over the jar mouths for draining.  Secondly, sprouted seeds are highly nutritious; when a seed begins to sprout, all of the growing nutrients are unlocked from its cellular material and made available to the plant {or the eater of said plant}.

More nourishment + low cost = Do It Now!

Think about the magic of vitamins and minerals and macro-nutrients swirling and mixing together to create a new living thing.  When you eat a sprouted seed, you get all of that.  The actual nutritional content varies based on the type of seeds you’re sprouting, but legume, grain and vegetable seed sprouts {lentils, chickpeas, kamut, millet, broccoli, for example} can contain:

  • Vitamins A, C and B6
  • Calcium
  • Chlorophyll
  • Iron
  • Thiamin
  • Riboflavin
  • Magnesium
  • Niacin
  • Folate
  • Phosphorus
  • Potassium
  • Zinc
  • All of the amino acids {proteins in their most basic, digestable form, up to 35% of our recommended daily amount of protein}

Also sprouting legumes breaks down the natural sugars and phytic acid that make beans and lentils difficult for some of us to digest.  This means that eating sprouted beans won’t make you as gassy as cooked beans are wont to do.  Also, sprouted beans and grains are more alkalizing to the body, and the minerals are more easily absorbed.

A question I had that stopped me from trying sprouting was: are chickpea sprouts really just dry chickpeas sprouted?  Can I use what’s in my pantry?  The answer is: YES!  So I looked on my shelves, and started myself off with 3 types of seeds to sprout: quinoa, chickpeas and French lentils.


I put my seeds in glass jars that were bigger in size than my quantity of seeds, covered each one with cheesecloth or a small mesh strainer, and covered them with water.  I swirled and swished, and then poured out the water.  I did that a few times.  Then I re-filled the jar with fresh, cool water, and let the jars sit overnight (the recommended times between soaking and rinsings are 8-12 hours).


In the morning, I strained out the water (which is full of nutrients, according to the Sproutpeople, so you can use it to cook with or water your plants), and let the jars sit out of direct sunlight on my counter.  8 hours later, I rinsed them, drained them, and let them sit some more.  My rhythm was rinsing and draining in the morning and again at night.

It takes about 6-8 hours after the initial soaking is over for quinoa to sprout.  It took about twice that for the lentils and chickpeas to grow tails.  I sprouted them all for 4 rinse/drain cycles.  When the sprouts were about ¼ inch long (and much longer on the quinoa), I rinsed one last time, and encouraged extra drying by leaving the jars upside down for awhile.  Then I put the covers on the jars, and put the sprouted seeds into the fridge (where they’ll be good to eat for 3-7 days: don’t eat anything that smells bad or is slimy, of course!).

And then I ate them!  You can eat them raw or cooked, sprinkle them on salads or pureé them into hummus.  We threw a handful of quinoa sprouts into plain pancake batter, and used them to garnish soup.  They’re crunchy, a little nutty, and so good for you.

Here’s to warmth, growth, and sprouts!


Sprouted Chickpea SnacksSprouted chickpeas

1 ½ cups raw, sprouted chickpeas
2 Tb fresh-squeezed lemon juice
1 ½ tsp sea salt (or more, to taste)
1 tsp smoked paprika
¾ tsp dried marjoram
1 tsp nutritional yeast

1. Place sprouted chickpeas in a bowl with the lemon juice and mix thoroughly.
2. Combine sea salt, smoked paprika, marjoram and nutritional yeast in a mortar and pestle or small bowl, and mix until completely combined.
3. Sprinkle herb mixture over chickpea + lemon juice mixture, and stir until incorporated.  Add more salt or herbs, to taste.
4. Keep in a covered jar in the refrigerator, and add to salads or just eat as a snack!

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Liz Flint-Somerville, Nutritional Consultant

Liz was a partner in Grub for 3 amazing years and helped author many of our most beloved recipes and posts. She is now dedicating her time to caring for her family, writing poetry, and continuing to cook delicious Real Foods.

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One Response to “Sprouting 101: Chickpea Snacks”

  1. ยารักษาริดสีดวง September 22, 2015 at 9:15 am #

    Thanks for finally writing about >More Nourishment + Less Cost = Sprouting!
    – GRUB <Loved it!

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