Mung bean sprouts

Sukju-namul 숙주나물

I’m pretty excited to release this video! A couple years ago I made a video on how to grow your own soybean sprouts, and since then I’ve been experimenting with growing my own mung bean sprouts.

Korean cuisine uses mung bean and soybean sprouts in many dishes (like this mung bean sprout side dish). I love their crispy texture. Now that I grow them at home I eat them a lot more often, and they are also cheaper and more delicious than what I can buy in a store!

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They are pretty simple to grow, but you need patience and you need to be sure to water them often, or else they won’t grow long, plump and crispy, they’ll be thin and stringy. Also, be sure to keep them out of the light, so they grow yellow, not green. I used an old black t-shirt over top of my planter to keep them dark.

As I mentioned in the video, I have strong memories of my grandmother growing soybean sprouts when I was young. I used to be woken up by the sounds of her dripping and trickling water over the sprouts at all hours of the night.

She had them in a corner in the room where we slept. She used to make a huge amount in a large basin, with a wooden platform across it, on top of which she grew the beans in a traditional Korean siru (시루), an earthenware pot with holes in the bottom used for steaming rice cakes. She was always watering her beans by scooping some water from the basin over top of them. Over time, the sprouts grew owing to my grandmother’s care. It made a real impression on me.

I’m always excited while my bean sprouts are growing. If I go out, I keep thinking about how my sprouts are waiting for me to water them. When I wake up during the night, I rush to my sprouts to water them: “Oh my babies, you must have been thirsty!”

It’s a one-week commitment but it gives me a lot of happiness. When I think about my grandmother, I’m sure she must have felt the same way as I do.

how to grow bean sprouts

What you need (for 5 pounds of mung bean sprouts):

  • 1½ cup dried mung beans
  • Plastic planter, 11 inches in diameter, 8½ inch tall. You can get this at a hardware store or on Amazon
  • mesh net pouch (I get one when I buy onions)
  • black cloth
  • large bowl or basin
  • a small bowl

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Directions

  1. Pick out any broken or blemished beans. Wash and drain and soak the beans in cold water for 24 hours.how to grow mung bean sprouts (숙주나물: 녹두나물)
  2. The next day, place the mesh net on the bottom of the planter and add a paper towel over it. Drain the beans and put them into the planter on the paper towel. Wet the beans with cold running water one last time.
  3. Put the small bowl upside down in the large basin. Put the planter on top of the small bowl, so the water will drain out nicely into the basin, and the planter won’t sit in the water. Cover it with the black cloth.
  4. Water the beans as often as you can, at least every 3 hours. It’s ok not to water them all night, but if you happen to wake up you can water them. Otherwise, be sure to water them first thing in the morning.
  5. On the 3rd day, the beans will start sprouting.how to grow mung bean sprouts (숙주나물: 녹두나물)
  6. On the 5th day, the sprouts will grow 2 to 3 inches long.how to grow mung bean sprouts (숙주나물: 녹두나물)
  7. The 6th day should be harvest day. You’ll get 5 pounds of bean sprouts. Put them into plastic bags and keep them in the fridge. You can store the sprouts for up to 7 days, longer than that and they may brown and wither.

how to grow mung bean sprouts (숙주나물: 녹두나물)

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27 Comments:

  1. yuki_sicily Sicily, Italy joined 4/18 & has 2 comments

    Maangchi, Unni!!! Look at my sukju-namol! Every time i open the black cover on my planter I get very excited. It is just so amazing to see how much it’s multiplied. I only had a cup of mung beans in the cupboard but even then i had a great harvest. Thank you so much for sharing how to grow our own bean sprouts. I also love kungnamol but i still have to find soybeans here in Sicily. I miss all the food back in Korea but now with your videos I can make my own but not all since some ingredients are not available in our island. Kamsahamnida, Maangchi!


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  2. Maangchicj Boston joined 1/14 & has 4 comments

    Hi Maangchi!

    First time trying your recipe and first time poster here.

    My sprouts look okay except for a little purple due to light exposure (sunny window where I watered them”. But I’m afraid to use them because some of the mung beans have brown spots on them. I put a few at the top of the pile in the picture . It seem to occur most with those at the top of my planter bucket. So I discarded those. Do I need to the discard everything? Is it mold or rot? Do you know how I can avoid that in the future and get the lemony yellow colored sprouts like yours ? I did place the planter next to a heating floorboard. It wasn’t hot by any means but it was the warmer area of the house . Dumont beans prefer to be cooler … like near a window ( I live in Boston so right now the windows are cool ).


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    • Maangchicj Boston joined 1/14 & has 4 comments

      Sorry for the typo : *Do you mung beans prefer to be cooler?

      • Maangchic Boston joined 1/14 & has 4 comments

        Update: I threw them out. I’d like to start again but with your advice before I do so. So I’ll patiently wait for an answer and look forward to eventually making a Namul and possibly use the sprouts in a bibimbop…if I can find some gosari :-)

        • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,418 comments

          Follow the directions closely and don’t put the planter in a warm spot. And also check out the beans to make sure they are not too old. That’s all I can think of right now.

          • Maangchic Boston joined 1/14 & has 4 comments

            Thanks Maangchi for your suggestions. I don’t think it is the bean because they have good color, organic and were taken from a bulk bin where the beans are replenish frequently. Also, they looked creamy when they first started to sprout. I bet the warmth near the baseboard was too drying for them…especially overnight. I don’t wake up during the night like your mother. So the longer overnight duration between watering and the warmth probably did it. I’m hoping a cooler spot will better match to my watering abilities. :-)

            I hope this is helpful to anyone else considering a warmer place. Nothing definitive; consider it a ‘?” at this point. I will report back after I try again.

  3. Mw NY joined 9/14 & has 4 comments

    Another pic


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  4. Mw NY joined 9/14 & has 4 comments

    Hi Maangchi – Mine turned out purple. Does that mean the sprouts were exposed to sunlight? Do you think that affects the taste. The roots also seem really long. Did I wait too long to harvest? Should I discard and start a new batch?

    Thanks,
    Mw


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  5. Mw NY joined 9/14 & has 4 comments

    Hi – If I am unable to water at night, can I just leave a wet paper towel on top of the beans. Will that cause mold?

    Thanks,
    Mw

  6. Rashna Albi, France joined 9/16 & has 1 comment

    I gave it a try and after 5 days I was giving it to every body. My thai friends were more than happy to have them. My spanish mother-in-law is now saying big NO to the canned mung bean sprouts. She has been even trying it in her own spanish recipes. Thanks to you maangchi.

  7. neetika bangalore joined 4/16 & has 1 comment

    Thanks a lot for showing how to grow sprouts. loved ur video and u are an inspiration for me. my sprouts grow very quickly and the roots tend to turn dark with time …how can I prevent that? is there any way by which I can get rid of the roots? and how do I increase the life of stored sprouts? too many questions….but thanks again…lots of love

  8. Madara Sri Lanka joined 4/16 & has 1 comment

    I did it maangchi…


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  9. rocknchick Rockford, IL joined 12/14 & has 11 comments

    Does it matter where you buy the beans? I bought a pack at the grocery store, pretty cheap. Does it affect the quality of the sprouts? There’s websites that sell beans and seeds, but why pay if it’s not necessary, right?

  10. T2 joined 10/15 & has 4 comments

    Maangchi this is my home grown beansprouts!! :D


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  11. ZenpunK Kauai, Hawaii joined 11/11 & has 4 comments

    What can I use if I don’t have a mesh net?

  12. AishaIftikhar89 joined 10/15 & has 3 comments

    Its Day 2 of my Mung bean sprouts project :). They have already sprouted on Day 1 within first 6 hours. Now at Day 2, I’m happy sprouts have grown a little more :)

  13. AishaIftikhar89 joined 10/15 & has 3 comments

    Kamsahammida, you’ve solved my problem.

  14. Donnarz Iloilo,Philippines joined 12/14 & has 8 comments

    thanks maangchi! i’ve been waiting for this. :) its my favourite. .:*

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