Peek inside this post: Are you looking for an easy way to give your chickens more protein and nutrients without letting them destroy your yard, gardens, and flower beds? Sprouting lentils is simple and affordable. Keep reading for my favorite way of growing lentils for chickens and my simple “how to” video so you can do it, too!
Homemaking doesn’t stop just with our home and our family! Often, it carries over to pets and livestock, too!
Caring for pets and livestock takes both time and expense. If you have found this post you are probably like me and want to find tips to help your chickens get more nutrients and save some money by doing it economically at home.
I had tried sprouting lentils in the past but I didn’t know then what I know now and it has gone SO much better this time around!
The key for me was finding a good way to drain our lentils that didn’t result in a mess all over the kitchen.
Keep reading below and I will share the tip that saved me so much time and stress as I sprout lentils for our chickens!
Table of Contents
How to Grow Lentils for Chickens (with video)
Benefits of Lentils for Chickens
As we get started, it’s important to look at the benefits of lentils for chickens.
Sprouted lentils are a superfood for our sweet feathered friends. Please note, raw lentils do not hold the same properties as sprouted lentils. They are much harder to digest and do not hold the same qualities as a germinated lentil.
According to https://www.healthbenefitstimes.com/sprouted-lentils/ germinating lentils changes the make- up of lentils, which leaves us with a much better food source for our chickens.
1| Sprouted lentils are easy for your chickens to digest
By soaking and germinating the lentils it releases phytic acid, which helps the lentil to be easier to digest.
2| They are packed with protein
Studies show that not only do lentils become easier to digest but they also increase in protein as they sprout.
Our hens thrive best with good sources of protein as they continually make eggs for us to enjoy.
3| They have many vitamins and minerals to help keep them healthy
Sprouted lentils contain zinc, magnesium, iron, potassium, and B vitamins.
Now that we have talked about some of the benefits of sprouting lentils for your chickens, let’s talk about what you need to know to start doing it on your own!
How to Grow Lentils For Chickens
Growing lentils indoors for chickens is extremely easy and only takes a minute or two of your day. In order to get started, you need just a few supplies.
Supplies needed to sprout lentils
- Wide mouth mason jar
- Dried lentils
- Mason jar ring
- a sharpie
- Mesh splatter screen ( I got mine from the dollar store)
- Sharp scissors
- Work gloves (optional)
Prep to make sprouted lentils
- After purchasing all your supplies, you will need to trace around the outside of the mason jar ring on your mesh splatter screen. Next, you will use sharp scissors to cut out your circle shaped screen.
Please note, work gloves may be a good idea. I had a couple of pieces shed onto my counter and I used a paper towel to gently brush them into the garbage before cleaning the counter completely once the project was finished.
Wearing gloves might keep your hands from getting poked with the wire mesh!
1| Pour ¼ cup to ½ cup of lentil into your mason jar and cover lentils with water.
2| Screw on lid with mesh cover.
3| Let your lentils sit for 24 hours in water. Drain and rinse.
4| Drain and rinse in the days that follow.
We usually see sprouts in just a couple days and feed them to our chickens about Day 5 or Day 6.
Watch the “how to” video of my process:
Sprouting lentils really is that simple! I like to rinse mine first thing in the morning when I am preparing my cup of tea so it’s easier for me to remember.
Is It Worth Growing Lentils For Chickens?
At our home, our chickens are backyard chickens. They live in a large pen and have 3 grazing boxes that we keep watered so they continue to get their greens without being able to destroy the grass, gardens, and mulch.
We also have a couple chicken tractors that we put our chickens in to get some greens!
During the winter, it’s harder to give them extra protein sources. Also, we had several chickens molting last winter which uses up all their energy and protein so we try to offer extra protein when possible.
Lentils are very affordable. I think it costs $1.34 for a bag of green lentils at our grocery store, which lasts a good amount of time, depending on how many jars you have going at once.
For a very low investment and using supplies you probably already have in your home, you can sprout lentils for your chickens providing them with delicious nutrients that are easy to digest.
Another added bonus is they will love you even more when they see you coming with those sprouted lentils!
Helpful Tips for Growing Lentils for Chickens
1| Pay attention to the moisture level in your house.
If its humid in your house, you might find that rinsing your lentils a little less frequently helps them to sprout better.
It’s been pretty humid the past couple weeks and I found that skipping day in rinsing my lentils helped them to keep a good moisture level while sprouting.
2| Decide what amount of lentils works best for you.
If you want to sprout more lentils, use 1/2 cup dried lentils to get you started. You will be surprised how much they fill up that jar!
Wrapping up Growing Lentils For Chickens
I hope this post has provided you with more info on how to grow lentils for chickens as well as some of the great benefits of sharing them with your chickens.
Have you had success sprouting? What is your favorite thing to sprout? I love to hear what works well for other people!