If you have been wondering how you can start sprouting wheat berries and using them to make your own flour, this is the post for you!
Sprouting Wheat Berries
Since I got a grain mill I’ve been researching a lot about sprouting wheat berries and grinding my own flour. I’ve discovered that sprouting grains creates more vitamins and makes them easier to digest. I started grinding my own wheat berries so that I am able to preserve the nutrients in freshly ground wheat.
Through further research, I’ve been reading about phytic acids in unsprouted grains and how to remove them by sprouting the grains. There is a lot of debate and detail on this topic and I’d encourage you to do your own research. From reading. I’ve discovered that by removing the phytic acid it helps take out the inhibitor in the grains and that helps your body to be able to digest them better.
You can sprout your grains and still make them into flour and use them as you normally would use wheat flour, no difference except better nutrients and vitamins! Sprouting and drying the grains is time-consuming but takes very little actual hands-on work. Depending on your grain used it should take about 2 days or 48 hours to fully sprout, dry, and mill your grains.
— Want to learn how to sprout your own seeds? Check out this post to learn How to Easily Begin Sprouting Seeds
How to Sprout Grains
Start by measuring 5 cups of wheat berries (or another whole grain) into a gallon glass jar. You don’t really want to fill up more than 1/3 of the jar because the grains will expand. Then rinse the grains once and drain them, then fill the jar up again with water. Let this sit and soak for at least 8 to 12 hours. Make sure you cover the top of the jar with some kind of screen. I used cheesecloth secured with a rubber band.
After you have let the grains soak, drain the water.
Then rinse the grains and pour out any excess water.
Tip the jar up and let any excess water drip out. You will want to rinse and drain the grains about once every 2 to 3 hours until they sprout.
I used soft white wheat for this sprouting and it took them about 12 hours to sprout after I started the rinsing/draining process. Once they have short little tails, they are done!
Much more than we started out with! I gave the sprouted wheat berries one final rinse before I started the drying process.
–Do you have animals? You can use a similar process to make your own fodder.
How to Dry Sprouted Grains
Before we can use our yummy sprouted grains for flour or other purposes, we need to dry them.
To dry them, first, pour the grains into your dehydrator trays. You may need to get extra screens or so the grains don’t fall through depending on which dehydrator you have and the size of the grains you have sprouted. Mine came with screens and the grains didn’t fall through so I was good to go!
Set your dehydrator at 145F. It will take between 12 and 24 hours to dry the grains depending on what kind they are and how humid your home is. You can also do this in your oven if the temp goes below 150F. Anything higher than that will destroy the good enzymes that you just helped to create!
This is what the grains looked like after they were done drying. These only took about 12 hours, I used soft white wheat berries. You can use your berries just like this if you’d like. Just make sure they are fully dry and store them in an airtight container. You can use them for a little extra crunch on salads, or in your granola, etc.
How to Make Flour with Sprouted Grains
Before you start grinding your sprouted wheat berries, make sure that your grains are very, very dry so that you don’t clog up your machine.
Set up your grain mill. As I’ve mentioned before, I just love my WonderMill! One thing I always double-check is that the canister is good and attached to the mill, otherwise, you might just make a mess. (Not that I’m speaking from experience or anything….)
Add the grains to the grain mill. I did this on the bread setting.
Unless you plan on using it right away, store your freshly milled flour in the freezer so it will preserve the nutrients.
—Now that you’ve got some fresh flour, you can get started baking some delicious breads!
Just as a note, freshly milled sprouted flour smells more earthy than regularly milled flour. This is because instead of milling a seed you are milling a plant. Like I said above, this is more time consuming than just milling flour but you will have to decide for you and your family if the benefits out-weight the time spent.
Here are some more flours or flour blends you can make at home:
Do you sprout your own grains?
This post on Sprouting Wheat Berries was originally published on Little House Living in July 2012. It has been updated as of March 2020.