4 Things You Should Know About Sprouted Grains

by Kristen Keen, MBA, RD, LDN

Last Updated: July 30, 2020

Sprouted grains have been a major topic of health conversation as of late. In grocery stores, they can be found in the produce section, down snack aisles, and even in the freezer, both in their original form and prepared into great pre-packaged products. You can even sprout your own. But why? We’ve put together everything you need to know about how sprouted grains are different from regular grains and why to include them in your diet.
  1. What are sprouted grains?
    Sprouted grains are whole grain seeds that are just in the beginning stages of sprouting. The germination process incorporates humidity and warmer temperatures which allows the nutrients to be more readily available. Grains that can be sprouted include oats, rye, corn, barley, millet, wheat, quinoa, sorghum, farro and rice. Other items that can also be sprouted include beans, nuts, legumes, and seeds.
  2. What are the nutritional benefits of sprouted grains?
    The germination process causes nutrients in sprouted grains to be more available than regular whole grains. These nutrients include protein, iron, vitamin C, folate, zinc, fiber, and magnesium, which all have major health benefits. The germination process breaks down the proteins, carbohydrates, and fats making it easier for our bodies to digest. As an added benefit, sprouted grains are naturally low in sodium, cholesterol, added sugar, fat, and calories.

    Eating sprouted grains is beneficial due to the nutrients they provide, and benefits mentioned above. Incorporating and choosing whole grains throughout your day over more processed grains are beneficial due to their increased nutrition profile. Adding fiber to our daily intake is beneficial for anyone.
  3. Are sprouted grains safe?
    Sprouted grains are safe, but remember that practicing proper food safety handling with any food item is important. The germination process of sprouted grains requires humid and warmer temperatures which are ideal for bacterial growth. Be sure to cook sprouted grains at least to 135°F or refrigerate at 40°F or below to kill bacteria and reduce the risk of foodborne illness. Always be sure to wash your sprouts under cool running water before eating. At risk populations like children, pregnant women, those who are immunocompromised, and those who are elderly should avoid eating raw sprouted grains.
  4. How do we use sprouted grains?
    Sprouted grains can add extra texture and flavor to a dish that is lacking a little something. Along with adding extra pizzazz to a dish, sprouted grains require little to no prep time. Here are a few ways to incorporate sprouted grains into your next meal:

Sprouted grains are becoming a staple at the grocery store. If you are interested in learning more, set up an appointment with a dietitian at Kroger Health today!

Disclaimer: This information is educational only and not providing healthcare recommendations. Please see a healthcare provider.

Kristen Keen, MBA, RD, LDN

Kristen Keen, MBA, RD, LDN

Kristen believes having a strong relationship with nutrition is key to having a healthy life and that relationship should center around the power of self-love!