How to Sprout Seeds


Seeds can be sprouted, or grown just for a few days, to eat as a salad green or sandwich topping. This kind of indoor gardening can be done with very little space on a kitchen counter and yet still yield a plentiful harvest all year long. The sprouting method doesn't require dirt, so it is very clean. Common seeds to sprout are alfalfa, wheat grass, clover, radish, chickpeas and mung bean, but there are many other seeds that can be grown and eaten as sprouts.

Step 1

Place 2 tbsp. of seeds in the jar and add water until the jar is at least 1/4 full and the seeds are covered. Cover the jar opening with a piece of stocking (to act as a strainer) and secure with a rubber band. Don't use a lid--the seeds will need air. Soak the seeds for eight hours or overnight.

Step 2

Remove water. Roll the jar to distribute seeds around the inside surface of the jar, then lay the jar on its side. The seeds should remain damp, but without standing water in the jar. Keep jar at 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit--if this is warmer than room temperature, place the jar in a warm location, like on top of the refrigerator. The seeds do not need sunlight.

Step 3

Rinse seeds every day with cool water. Do this by adding water to the jar, gently swirl it around the seeds, then empty and repeat.

Step 4

Move sprouts to a sunny location on the fourth day. This will allow the sprouts to turn green.

Step 5

Check sprouts after five days to see if they are ready. If they look big enough to eat, empty seeds on a towel and allow to dry in the sun for 15 minutes. If the seeds are not yet ready, allow them to continue to growing another day or two.

Tips and Warnings

  • Refrigerate sprouts when they are done growing.

Things You'll Need

  • Glass jar, quart size
  • Seeds
  • Stocking
  • Rubber band
  • Scissors


  • Reach Out Michigan: Growing Alfalfa Sprouts
  • Backyard Nature: Growing Alfalfa Sprouts
  • Primal Seeds: Gardening
Keywords: grow sprouts, sprout seeds, indoor garden sprouts

About this Author

Denise Bertacchi is a freelance writer with a degree in journalism from Southeast Missouri State University. She is a St. Louis suburbanite who has written for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Boys' Life, Wisconsin Trails, and Missouri Life.