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What are Radish Sprouts?

Mary McMahon
Updated May 16, 2024
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Radish sprouts are germinated radish seeds which have just begun to put out leaves. They are used in some Asian dishes, and they can also be used on salads, sandwiches, and dishes from other regions of the world as well. Like other sprouts such as alfalfa sprouts and sunflower sprouts, radish sprouts have an excellent nutritional value, and they can be a very useful supplement to the diet, especially for people who live in areas where produce is hard to get in the winter. Many markets and health food stores carry radish sprouts, and they can also be made at home.

Typically the seeds of the daikon radish are used to make radish sprouts. Whether sprouts are being made at home or for commercial use, the seeds are first rinsed and soaked for 24 hours, before being transferred to a jar covered in netting or a sprouter. The seeds are kept at room temperature, and turned and rinsed every 12 hours; within three to six days, young sprouts will start to emerge, and they can be used as desired.

Vitamins A, B, C, E, and K are all present in radish sprouts, along with zinc, calcium, and iron. Radish sprouts also have a mild peppery flavor, just like radish plants, and some people find this flavor enjoyable. Since other sprouts can be a bit bland or dull, radish sprouts can make a pleasant contrast with their brief hit of spice. The sprouts can be eaten raw or very lightly cooked; because they are so delicate, it's usually better to just toss the sprouts with a cooked dish like a stir fry, allowing the residual heat to cook the sprouts.

Sprouts should always be rinsed before use, and you should discard sprouts which are slimy, along with sprouts that have acquired a strange smell. Once sprouts have matured to your satisfaction, they can be stored under refrigeration, which will slow the rate of growth and also prevent decay and mold. Try to use sprouts within a week, and be sure to keep them rinsed and drained.

Several food safety agencies have issued warnings about sprouts. They can harbor various harmful bacteria, especially when handled commercially by numerous people, any one of whom could have bacterial hitchhikers. Because of this, cooking commercial sprouts is often recommended, especially if the sprouts are to be served to people with compromised immune systems.

DelightedCooking is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a DelightedCooking researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments
By anon297390 — On Oct 15, 2012

The information given here was amazing! It helped me with my science experiment!

By andee — On May 23, 2011

@SarahSon - That is exactly how I started with sprouting. I am always looking for ways to teach my kids about eating healthy, and thought growing sprouts would be a great learning experience for all of us.

They were excited to plant and watch the sprouting seeds grow. We then use them in several different ways in our diet, and it gives them the opportunity to see the connection between growing some of your own food and how nutritious and economical it can be for you.

By SarahSon — On May 21, 2011

It really is very easy to grow sprouts. I never get tired of seeing seed germinate and grow. My first experience was sprouting sunflower seeds. I enjoyed this so much, that I next tried wheat grass. It sounds like radish sprouts will be next on my list.

Using sprouts in a stir fry dish is a great way to enjoy their taste and get the nutrition from them that you need. It doesn't take up much space and because you see results so quickly can also be a great project for kids to get involved with and teach them about nutrition at the same time.

By bagley79 — On May 20, 2011

I have heard of different kinds of sprouts, but hever heard of radish sprouts. Radishes are always the first thing I get planted in my garden in the spring, and now I think I need to learn how to grow sprouts. Maybe I could get a little taste of fresh radish all year long.

I know they are many benefits so sprouting, and it sounds like a simple process. I think by doing it yourself at home, you can save a lot of money and you would not have to worry as much about the bacteria as long as you used correct handling methods and used them while they were fresh.

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

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