How To Sprout Chia Seeds – 5 Easy Methods

Sprout Chia Seeds

Salvia hispanica or Salvia columbariae, popularly known as chia seeds, is a superfood. People use them in a wide range of recipes, including salads, puddings, sandwiches, smoothies, etc.

They are rich in essential omega-3 fatty acids, linoleic fatty acids, and many valuable nutrients. In this guide, we will teach you how to sprout chia seeds.

Sprouting seeds improves their digestibility and increases their nutrient content. It even enhances the bioavailability of the micronutrients in the body. You could proceed to grow chia sprouts. 

Chia seeds are easy to sprout using readily available tools in your home. You only need to provide the necessary conditions. This article discusses five methods on how to sprout chia seeds.

How To Sprout Chia Seeds: Conditions For Sprouting

Generally, you need the following to sprout chia seeds:

  • Organic, high-quality chia seeds. You can purchase them at your local grocery store or health store. One teaspoon of chia seeds produces two cups of chia sprouts.
  • Sprouting surface. It provides the medium for the chia seeds to grow.
  • Sunlight. It provides energy for the chia seeds to sprout, but they require low-intensity lighting. Do not put them in direct sunlight.
  • Moisture. Chia seeds need moisture to sprout. But they are a mucilaginous seed. That means they form a protective chia gel sac that inhibits sprouting when they are soaked in water. You only need to mist the seeds or place them on a porous, damp surface. You cannot sprout them using the regular mason jar method.

5 Methods On How To Sprout Chia Seeds

sprouted or germinated chia seeds
Image Source: Shutterstock

1. Terra Cotta Dish Method

What You need

  • Terra cotta dish
  • Spray bottle
  • Filtered water
  • Organic chia seeds
  • Paper towel
  • Baking dish with clamshell

Steps

  1. Take a clean terra cotta dish and soak it in water for a few minutes to moisten it.
  2. Pat it with a paper towel or clean, dry towel to blot away any excess moisture.
  3. Spread a thin layer of chia seeds on the terra cotta dish.
  4. Add filtered water a quarter-way up the baking dish.
  5. Place the terra cotta dish in the water. Ensure that the water does not get into the top surface of the terra cotta dish where the chia seeds are.
  6. Put some filtered water in the spray bottle and spritz the chia seeds. Makes sure they are moist but not soaked. Ensure there is no standing water on the terra cotta dish.
  7. Cover the baking dish with a glass lid. It creates a greenhouse effect and traps moisture.
  8. Terra cotta is a type of porous, brownish-orange or brownish-red clay. It allows just the right amount of moisture to seep through to the chia seeds. So, you do not need to spritz the growing chia seed every day.
  9. Within four to seven days, the seeds will begin to sprout. You can harvest the chia sprouts or allow them to grow into microgreens.

2. Chia Pet Method

Chia pets are terra cotta figurines designed in different shapes and styles and are used as chia planters. They have grooves that hold the chia seeds as they grow. There are animal chia pets like sheep, frogs, puppies, kittens, etc.

Others depict real people, such as Donald Trump, Bob Ross, and Barack Obama; they’ve even modeled some on famous cartoon characters, like Scooby-Doo. They are affordable and are found on Amazon. Most come as a complete kit that includes a pack of chia seeds. Our favorite is the Chia Pet Bob Ross with Seed Pack.

What You Need

  • Chia seeds
  • Chia planter
  • Filtered water
  • Spray bottle
  • Dish
  • Tray
  • Plastic bag (optional)

Steps

  1. Fill a dish with water and soak the planter for about an hour and then remove it and pat away the excess water.
  2. Put water in a spray bottle and mist the chia seeds without soaking them.
  3. Spread the moist chia seeds on the damp chia pet. You may use a small knife to spread the seeds evenly, especially in the grooves.
  4. Put water in a tray and place the chia pet inside; water will seep through the planter to the chia seeds. Place the planter away from direct sunlight.
  5. Allow four to seven days for the chia seeds to sprout.
  6. Cover the planter with a plastic bag if the surrounding air is dry or too hot. Covering it should prevent excessive moisture loss. Remove the plastic bag once the chia seeds sprout.

3. Flat-Bottomed, Wide-Mouth Glass Container Method

This is one of the most accessible chia sprouting methods. Its ease is because the items needed are readily available.

What You Need

  • Chia seeds
  • Filtered water
  • Spray bottle
  • Flat-bottomed glass container

Steps

  1. Take a clean and dry flat-bottomed glass container.
  2. Spread a thin layer of chia seeds across its base.
  3. Put water in the spray bottle and moisten the seeds. Do not make the seeds too wet, as they will form a gel coating that inhibits sprouting.
  4. Place the container in a low-light area, away from direct sunlight.
  5. You may loosely place a lid on top of the container. That should prevent moisture loss and protect the seeds from contamination. But be sure to leave one side of the container slightly opened to help its aeration.
  6. Allow four to seven days for the chia seeds to sprout. You may need to spritz the chia seed daily or every other day. It all depends on the humidity in the surrounding areas.

4. Jiffy Strips Method

Like terra cotta, jiffy strips are porous, as they are made of peat or wood fiber. They are also 100% biodegradable. They are affordable and can be bought on Amazon.

What You Need

  • Chia seeds
  • 3-inch jiffy strips
  • Filtered water
  • Spray bottle

Steps

  1. Put filtered water in the spray bottle
  2. Spray an abundant amount on the jiffy strip until it is entirely wet.
  3. Sprinkle chia seeds on the jiffy strip. Do not crowd the peats.
  4. Use the spray bottle to mist the chia seeds.
  5. Place the jiffy strip in a low-light area, away from direct sunlight.
  6. Allow four to seven days for the chia seeds to sprout. You may need to spritz the chia seeds daily or every other day. It depends on the humidity in the surrounding areas.

5. Tray and Spray Method

This method is simple.

What You Need

  • Chia seeds
  • Spray bottle
  • Filtered water
  • Tray

Steps

  1. Clean a tray and wipe it dry.
  2. Sprinkle a thin layer of chia seeds across the tray.
  3. Put filtered water in a spray bottle and mist the seeds. Be sure not to wet the chia seeds so much that water collects at the bottom of the tray.
  4. Put the tray in a low-light area and allow four to seven days for the seeds to start sprouting. You will need to spritz the chia seeds daily or every other day. It depends on the surrounding conditions.

How To Sprout Chia Seeds: Conclusion

Sprouted chia seeds are highly nutritious. You could sprout them for propagation, too, if you wanted. Whatever your reason for sprouting, choose one of the above methods. The chia seeds will sprout within four to seven days under the right conditions. We hope this guide on how to sprout chia seeds has helped you grow your chia seeds. If you have tips on sprout chia seeds, feel free to share them in the comments below!

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