3 Easiest Foods To Ferment

Three Fermenting JarsYou have been hearing about how fermented foods are so good for your health! Calling up your favorite search tool, Google, Bling, or Yahoo gives many different results. Which is great, but where do you start? What vegetable is the easiest to ferment, but yet gives great returns?

Eating fermented foods on a regular basis can influence your gut flora, building the over 400 bacterial strains that live in your intestines. Fermented foods are processed without heat, allowing your gut to enjoy all the enhanced goodness of these raw super charged foods, in turn providing the basic building blocks needed to promote a healthier digestive tract and immune system.

Let me share with you the facts you need to make a decision! To help you make your choice we will look at the three main areas you should be concerned with when thinking about fermenting foods yourself: ease of fermenting, how long they last, and the health benefits. Notice I left out cost, since most vegetables are affordable.

Fermented foods are undeniably good for us. In fact, fermentation is essentially one of the oldest forms of food preservation. Fortunately, it’s having a comeback.

Ease Of Prep

Food preparation is what turns most people off when it comes to making items at home. Fermenting is easy to learn and does not require much in the way of special equipment.

The three easiest foods to prepare and ferment are carrot sticks, pickles, and sauerkraut.

  • Carrot Sticks – These are so easy to prepare. Just clean (peel) the carrots, cut into desired sized sticks, and ferment.
  • Pickles – For the best tasting, crisp pickles, make sure you use pickling cucumbers. Regular cucumbers will turn to mush quickly when fermented. Just clean the cucumbers, cut them into the size desired or shape (spears or slices), and ferment.
  • Sauerkraut – A food processor with a thin slicing disc can make quick work of shredding the cabbage; or use an adjustable mandoline. Grab a jar and ferment.

See how easy it is to prepare these three great vegetables for fermenting. The time involved in not hours, but just minutes to do the prep work.

Make Fermented Food At Home – Easily

How Long They Last

Many people are surprised by how long fermented foods can be stored in the refrigerator after the fermenting process is done.

  • Carrot Sticks – last around 6 months in the fridge. You will find you eat them up much sooner than that.
  • Pickles – last around 2 months in the fridge, they tend to get soft and loose their crunch.
  • Sauerkraut – up to 1 year in the fridge. Personally it always gets eaten way before a year.

Health Benefits

A big benefit of fermented foods that many people focus on is the probiotic count contained in the food after it is fermented. Getting good levels of probiotics into your diet daily is very important and it has been shown that you can change the levels of the probiotic population in the gut in about 20 days, Lacto-fermenting Exposed – Truth Or Lie”. One thing I will bring to your attention. Eating foods that are rich in probiotics is great, but don’t miss the fact that fermented foods release the nutrition that is stored deep in the tough cellular walls of vegetables. This is why you will often see increased vitamin and enzyme count in fermented foods, “If you are eating fermented foods for only this reason stop”.

  • Carrots – reduced cancer risk, falcarinol found naturally in carrots to protect its roots from fungal diseases has been shown in studies to help lower cancer risk by over 30%. Vitamin A and antioxidants found in carrots helps to protect the skin by preventing premature wrinkling, acne, dry skin, blemishes and uneven skin tone. Lower your cholesterol levels because the soluble fibers in carrots bind with bile acids. Add to all these benefits that carrots are high in carotenoids which are associated with a lower risk of heart disease. Fermenting up some carrot sicks and eating them as snacks does give lots of good benefits along with the probiotics.
  • Pickles – improved intestinal tract health, enhanced immune system, decreased allergies, and inflammation relief are all great benefits that have been shown to be a side benefit of eating fermented pickles. Classic pickles that are from the store are heated and pressure sealed killing healthy, probiotics, enzymes, and lowing vitamin count in the pickles. Is it a surprise that studies are showing that pickles can aid in the reduced chance of cancer.
  • Sauerkraut – often though of as the king of fermented foods. Cabbage in a way transforms when it is fermented to become a wonderful tasting food. A 2006 report states the wide ranging benefits of fermented foods such as sauerkraut in lowering risk of: digestive disorders like leaky gut syndrome and IBS, cancer, asthma, food allergies and sensitivities, and metabolic conditions such as diabetes.

The Original Veggie Fermenter (starter kit).
Just add the food and a jar

Make Some

I bet you have heard the old saying that if you want something done right you have to do it yourself. This holds true with fermented foods and while you maybe able to purchase some of these foods in the store they will never be at the health levels that can be achieved at home. When recommending fermented foods to friends, I often suggest they start with good old carrot sticks. Why? They are super easy to make and very handy as snacks, even kids will eat them if you throw some dill in when they are fermenting.

Fermenting is easy to do at home. You just need some mason jars and some fermenting lids. We offer a Veggie Fermenter Starter kit which contains the special lid/airlock, ceramic food weight and a the getting started booklet with all the know-how to make fermented carrots, pickles and sauerkraut at home. Remember all the great benefits you have read about today can only happen for you if you take the first step and start making them at home.

Please Note: This post may contain sponsor, affiliate, and/or referral links.

Disclaimer: The information in this post is meant for educational purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice. None of the opinions are meant to diagnose or treat any disease or illness. You should always consult your healthcare provider.

About Jeff

Jeff Pearce is a board certified Holistic Nutritional Consultant and has coached hundreds of people in the Dallas/Fort Worth to help them achieve their health goals. If you would like more information about his services view the Health Consultations section. For those not in the physical area Distance Coaching is an option. A 15 minute "No Cost" informational consult is available, by phone, to chat and answer questions about services. To schedule your no cost informational consultation please contact us .

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