Giveaway: Stackable Sprout Garden

My kids think sprouting is fun. When I first started sprouting, I was sprouting wheat berries in order to dry them and grind them into a flour that I could use to make bread. I eventually gave up making the bread, mostly out of laziness. If properly preparing grains was so much work, was it really worth all the effort? Maybe yes, maybe no. If it were up to me, I probably wouldn’t bother with grains at all. But, I have kids. They still like their sandwiches. So, I do buy a couple of loaves of sprouted grain bread from the grocery store per month.

Then I started exploring all the other kinds of sprouts: sprouts for gardening, sprouts for salads, sprouts for stir fries. They’re a cheap vegetable, easily grown all year indoors and with limited space, and surprisingly nutritious.

Today, I’m pleased to announce a giveaway from one of my sponsors, Julie at Cultures for Health. Julie has graciously decided to give one of my lucky readers a 3-Tray Stackable Sprout Garden!

But First, Why Sprout?

You may be surprised at how many things you can sprout: grains, legumes, seeds, and even some vegetables. Sprouting neutralizes many of the anti-nutrients in grains, legumes, and seeds — essentially turning these tiny seeds into more easily digested vegetables. It also dramatically increases the nutrient-density of the food. For example, when comparing sprouted wheat to unsprouted wheat on a calorie-per-calorie basis, the sprouted wheat contains:

1. four times the amount of niacin
2. nearly twice the amount of vitamin B6 and folate
3. five times the amount of vitamin C
4. significantly more protein and fewer starches and sugars

If you’re a regular reader at this site, you’re familiar with my stance on grains. (In short, don’t eat them unless they’re sprouted, soaked, or fermented. And, of course, sprouting is best.)

Sprouting also greatly increases the digestibility of grains, legumes, and seeds. I’m sure you’ve all had the experience of intestinal gas or bloating after eating beans or other legumes. You’ll be happy to know that sprouting the legumes before cooking them helps break down the complex sugars responsible for creating the gas, making them easier to digest.

Second, What to Sprout?

You can sprout just about any raw seed, but some are more traditionally eaten as food than others. That’s because some sprouts are actually toxic! The tiny little plants have some stiff defenses, designed to make them unappealing to natural predators. In most cases, you can simply cook the sprout and take care of any potential toxins or anti-nutrients that way. Or, if you still want to eat the sprout raw, you just have to let it sprout for longer. The more mature the tiny plant becomes, the less these potential toxins are present.

For example, did you know that alfalfa sprouts (the beloved food of the raw health food community) are actually high in the toxin canavanine when compared to most sprouts? In Nourishing Traditions (p.113), author Sally Fallon elaborates:

Tests have shown that alfalfa sprouts inhibit the immune system and contribute to inflammatory arthritis and lupus. Alfalfa seeds contain an amino acid called canavanine that can be toxic to man and animals when taken in quantity (Canavanine is not found in mature alfalfa plants; it is apparently metabolized during growth).

Based on my limited research into canavanine, I’m not as quick to judge alfalfa sprouts. A 150-pound human would have to consume 14,000 milligrams of canavanine all at once for it to be toxic at the same level it is toxic in mice. (source) Even in the most generous portions of alfalfa sprouts, you’re likely only going to consume a few milligrams of canavanine at most.

That said, alfalfa sprouts aren’t traditionally eaten as food. Traditionally, they’re grown into fully mature alfalfa plants and subsequently fed to animals. In my book, traditional wisdom always beats out modern nutritional science. So, while I think alfalfa sprouts are probably okay as an occasional indulgence (particularly when allowed to sprout for longer or when cooked), I wouldn’t take that risk if I were suffering from arthritis, lupus, or other inflammatory diseases.

Other sprouts make great additions to salads when eaten raw. My favorites are broccoli, radish, and mustard. I love sprouting lentils before adding them to soups or stews, and my favorite sprout for stir fry meals are mung beans (the Chinese have sprouted mung beans for thousands of years.)

Now, For That Giveaway!

This week, I am giving away a 3 Tray Stackable Sprout Garden worth $29.95. With it, you can sprout in much larger quantities than just using jars with sprouting lids. And, you’ll take up less valuable counter space doing it! The kit comes with a sprouter, drainboard, covers, 3 sprouting trays, 2 oz. certified organic alfalfa sprout seeds, sprouting instruction booklet, and a manufacturer lifetime replacement warranty.

It’s a great way to make sprouting easy and convenient, whether you’re sprouting grains, legumes, or yummy salad veggies!

This contest is now over. The winner will be announced Monday, February 21st. In the meantime, you can click on the link below to get 15% off all sprouting supplies at Cultures For Health!

How To Enter

The first step to entering the contest is to click on the link below. You’ll be taken to an entry form at the Cultures For Health website. To be clear, you must enter your information in the form in order to enter the contest.

(Note: If you can’t see the link above, it is because you have ad blocking software enabled or javascript disabled. Please disable your ad blocker to participate in the giveaway, or temporarily allow javascript use for this page.)

That’s good for one entry. For additional chances to win, do any of the following:

1. Blog about this giveaway and link back to this page on your blog. Comment below with the link. (1 extra entry)

2. Sign up for my email updates or RSS feed. Leave a comment below telling me that you signed up. You will also get an entry if you already subscribe — make sure to leave a comment! (1 extra entry)

3. Follow me on Twitter and tweet about the giveaway. Be sure to include the URL to this page in your tweet. Click the TweetThis button at the bottom of the post, or you can use the following tweet: “Win a 3-Tray Stackable Sprout Garden from Cultures for Health! (AND INCLUDE THE URL)” Leave a comment telling me that you followed & tweeted. (1 extra entry)

4. Email 5 friends about the giveaway, with a link to this page. Leave a comment below telling me that you did. (1 extra entry)

5. Stumble this post and leave me a comment telling me that you did. (1 extra entry)

There are a total of 6 possible entries.

Questions? Comment below.

This contest will end Saturday, February 20thth at 11:59 PM PST. The winner will be chosen via random.org, and will be announced on Monday, February 22th. The lucky winner will have 48 hours to contact me with his or her full name and email address.

Please note that Cultures For Health is one of my sponsors, and as such I am being compensated for hosting this giveaway. That said, you can trust that I only accept sponsors whose products I whole-heartedly endorse and believe in.

Good luck, everybody!

(photo by ksbuehler)

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While I adore hats & happy skirts, nothing inspires me quite like geeking out over nutrition & sustainable agriculture.
My name is Kristen Michaelis, author extraordinaire and rebel with a cause.

Comments

  1. Celeste Parkhurst says

    I follow your RSS and I just tweeted about the giveaway on twitter. I already follow you on twitter as well.

  2. says

    Ooooh, I’ve been eating broccoli sprouts as my primary vegetable for lunch lately, since they’re cheap and local, but it would be fun to grow my own. And also sprout some mung beans and maybe wheat again. Dehydrated sprouted wheatberries make an excellent substitution for crunchy cereal or granola if you’re missing it but not ready to brave the world of rancid oils!
    .-= Jenn´s last blog post …Real Food Challenge: Week 2 Recap =-.

  3. Alex says

    LOL–i started sprouting years ago because of my parrots of all things–in an effort to feed them healthy foods i have been led to this wonderful world of really healthy food!!!

  4. Teresa says

    Great contest Kristin! I really want a sprouter!!!

    I follow you, I emailed friends, I stumbled it, and of course I went to Cultures for Health and entered. :)

  5. says

    Oh I just looking at a sprouter the other day.

    I am never sure if I am supposed to leave individual comments for these things, but I follow your blog through my rss reader, I tweeted and follow you, and I stumbled it.
    .-= Heidi´s last blog post …Work!?!?!? =-.

  6. says

    I already own a stackable sprout thing just like this, but I have a question–is there going to perhaps be a tutorial on how to successfully use the sprouting trays?
    This is funny (and sad) considering I have no problems starting seeds and growing a wonderful garden, but for some reason I am sprout challenged. Both times I’ve tried the sprouting trays my sprouts have sprouted but also molded almost at the same time. Help! What could I be doing wrong?

    • says

      Amy — This giveaway comes with a sprouting instruction booklet. Question: do you rinse your sprouts several times a day while waiting for them to sprout? That’s the easiest way to prevent mold. Also, you need to have decent air circulation. While that can be a drawback for may stackable sprouting trays, this particular Sprout Garden is specifically designed with good drainage and air circulation in mind.

      • says

        That must be the problem–I didn’t rinse them enough! I’m not sure how great the air circulation in my stackable trays happens to be. It’s the type that Frontier sells. I’m going to try sprouting again soon and this time I’ll be sure to rinse them a couple times a day. Hopefully that will do the trick!
        .-= Amy´s last blog post …Rosie-isms. =-.

  7. Peggy Miller says

    I already subscribe to your blog and I just posted your entry on my facebook page. Thanks for all the tips :).

    Peggy

  8. Russell says

    Well, I already follow you on Twitter.

    I also tweeted the giveaway.

    Also passed the link to five other people via e-mail.

    And I just signed up for the RSS feed.

  9. Tara McGinnis says

    I follow you on Twitter and subscrine to this blog. I would absolutely love to win this. thanks for all the great advice.
    Tara

  10. says

    I tweeted, entered my info on the site and am a newsletter subscriber. [not sure if these are all supposed to be in separate comments]

    I like your site and all the great info I’ve found here. I even added your badge to my blog. Thanks for including this giveaway. :)
    .-= Lindsay´s last blog post …Endocrine System Overload =-.

  11. says

    When I blogged about your website and promotion, I sent it in an e-mail to ten friends and shared it on facebook.com, google reader, and twitter. That was after I twittered your post. Jenni

  12. says

    I need to get back in the habit of sprouting. For me it works best if I can get a routine going. But it’s a great way to add interest and nutrition to meals.

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