To find mung beans, look in the bean aisle of the grocery store. Aside from regular mung beans, there are also mung sprouts, which are the slightly sprouted seed form that add a crunchy and nutty flavor to any meal.
That’s one reason why mung lentil sprouts are a great addition to stir-fried dishes and soups.
What’s more, they’re widely used for making curry in India. Due to the high protein content, many countries use mung bean sprouts instead of meat. Let’s explore them a little more.
A Few Benefits of Mung Beans
High Fiber Content
The high level of fiber in mung beans leads to you feeling fuller faster, which helps lower your appetite and prevent obesity caused by overeating. You don't have to raise your fat content to have something that packs plenty of fiber and protein.
Lowers Blood Pressure
Hypertension is a gamble for cardiovascular disease, and mung beans have been shown to have the power to lower blood pressure. Fragments called peptides found in mung beans can reduce the narrowing of blood vessels and reduce systolic blood pressure.
Mung beans contain protective flavonoids, such as isovitexin and vitexin. They’re also known to show potent antioxidant activities. They help eliminate free radicals and reduce oxidative stress, two significant factors that contribute to cancer development.
Great Substitute for Mung Beans
Sunflower and Soybean Sprouts
Sunflower sprouts and soybean sprouts are two excellent alternatives to mung beans and sprouts since they have a rich bean-like flavor themselves. Sprouts are mainly used in stir-fries and provide a crispy texture to Asian dishes.
Pigeon Peas and Ice Peas
If you want a non-bean substitute for some reason, though, these are two solid options. Especially when it comes to the kitchen, they can make for an exciting alternative. They’re easy to find in grocery stores, too, so you won’t have to worry about looking too hard.
Finding soybeans is a bit easier than mung beans. For mung sprouts, in particular, sunflower sprouts make a decent replacement. They have a very similar flavor and nutritional profile; both belong to the fruit family. Soybean sprouts shine best when cooked in a stir-fry dish. However, they do pack more flavor than mung lentil sprouts.
How To Use Mung Beans
Mung Bean Hummus
Though chickpeas are the popular option, not many people know that mung beans can work pretty much as well. Just give your dried beans a quick boil and prepare your hummus the way you typically would. From there, the possibilities are endless.
One of the best recipes involving mung beans is mung bean and coconut curry. It’s an easy recipe that can be made in a single pot and involves ingredients that you are likely already lying around, like canned tomatoes, garlic, ginger, and cilantro. And, of course, dried mung beans too!
Tacos are a great food to put mung beans with. It’s typically most popular in Middle Eastern Mexican dishes. It adds just the right amount of protein and tastes great. It also adds some much-needed nutrients to tacos.
Mung beans have always been a niche favorite until now. They have seemingly been in every high-end recipe throughout the last year, especially in tacos and hummus. They’re rich in flavor, high in nutrients, and incredibly healthy for you. Plus, they can be lightly browned in olive oil for a savory, tender texture and taste.