Do you like mung beans? Many people do, but maybe you’re one of the few who don’t know what they are.
Mung beans are a small, green legume native to India and Pakistan.
They have a sweet, nutty flavor and are often used in Indian and Chinese cuisine.
While they are popular in many parts of the world, mung beans can be challenging to find in the United States.
If you can’t find mung beans, don’t worry.
There are plenty of substitutes that will work just as well in your recipes.
Let’s dive in and look at the five best substitutes for mung beans.
What are Mung Beans?
Mung beans are a type of small, green bean that is popular in many Asian cuisines.
They have a slightly sweet flavor and a firm texture and are often used in soups and stir-fries.
Mung beans are also sometimes sprouted and used in salads.
In addition to being eaten, mung beans can also be used to make a type of vegan cheese known as “vegan gouda.
” The beans are soaked and then blended with water, nutritional yeast, and spices to create a cheese that has a similar flavor and texture to traditional gouda.
Mung beans can also be ground into flour used in gluten-free baking.
Whether you’re looking for a new ingredient to add to your cooking or trying to find a way to make your favorite recipes more nutritious, mung beans are worth considering.
The 5 Best Substitutes for Mung Beans
Mung beans are a versatile and nutritious legume commonly used in various cuisines.
However, if you find yourself without mung beans or looking for alternative options, there are several substitutes available.
In this guide, we will compare the top 5 substitutes for mung beans, discussing their key characteristics and suggesting proper ratios to help you find suitable alternatives.
|Bean-like flavor with a crunchy texture
|Use an equal amount of sunflower sprouts as a substitute for mung beans
|Sweet and crunchy pods that provide a refreshing texture to dishes
|Use an equal amount of snow peas as a substitute for mung beans
|Mild and slightly earthy flavor, often used in Asian cuisine
|Use an equal amount of bamboo shoots as a substitute for mung beans
|Leafy green vegetable with a mild and slightly bitter taste
|Use an equal amount of bok choy as a substitute for mung beans
|Delicate and mild mushrooms with a crisp texture
|Use an equal amount of enoki mushrooms as a substitute for mung beans
Now, let’s dive into each substitute in more detail:
1 – Sunflower Sprouts
Sunflower sprouts are a nutty, earthy addition to any sandwich or salad.
And they’re packed with nutrients.
Just one ounce of sunflower sprouts contains more than a third of the recommended daily amount of vitamin C.
They’re also a good source of magnesium, potassium, and manganese.
Plus, sunflower sprouts are low in calories and fat-free.
So next time you’re looking for a healthy way to add some crunch to your meal, reach for sunflower sprouts.
- Key Characteristics: Sunflower sprouts have a bean-like flavor and a crunchy texture, making them a suitable substitute for mung beans.
- Proper Ratio: Use an equal amount of sunflower sprouts as a substitute for mung beans. Adjust the quantity based on personal preference and desired level of crunchiness.
2 – Snow Peas
Every gardener knows that snow peas are a beloved springtime treat.
These delicate, sweet peas are a welcome relief after a long winter of root vegetables and squash.
But did you know that snow peas are a type of legume? Unlike other peas, which are grown for their seeds, snow peas are harvested for their tender pods.
Snow peas are also unique in that they can be eaten raw or cooked.
When raw, they make a crunchy addition to salads, and when cooked, they transform into a delicious side dish.
No matter how you enjoy them, snow peas are a versatile and nutritious to any meal.
- Key Characteristics: Snow peas are sweet and crunchy pods that add a refreshing texture to dishes. They can be an excellent alternative to mung beans.
- Proper Ratio: Use an equal amount of snow peas as a substitute for mung beans. Adjust the quantity based on personal preference and desired level of crispness.
3 – Bamboo Shoots
In many parts of Asia, bamboo shoots are a popular food.
They can be eaten fresh, pickled, or canned and are often used in stir-fries and soups.
Bamboo shoots are the young shoots of certain varieties of bamboo, and they have a crunchy texture and a slightly sweet flavor.
While they are most commonly associated with Asian cuisine, bamboo shoots can be used in various dishes from all over the world.
Bamboo shoots are a great substitute if you can’t find mung beans.
- Key Characteristics: Bamboo shoots have a mild and slightly earthy flavor, commonly used in Asian cuisine. They can provide a unique taste profile similar to mung beans.
- Proper Ratio: Use an equal amount of bamboo shoots as a substitute for mung beans. Adjust the quantity based on personal preference and desired level of earthiness.
4 – Bok Choy
Bok choy is a member of the cabbage family and is one of the most popular vegetables in China.
It has a crisp texture and a slightly sweet flavor and is often used in stir-fries, soups, and salads.
Bok choy is a good source of vitamins A and C and magnesium, potassium, and calcium.
It also contains phytonutrients that may help to prevent cancer.
Bok choy is relatively easy to grow and can be planted in either spring or fall.
When choosing bok choy at the grocery store, look for crisp, green leaves and avoid wilted or yellowing.
Bok choy should be stored in the refrigerator and will keep for up to a week.
To prepare it for cooking, wash the leaves and slice them into thin strips.
With its crunchy texture and versatile flavor, bok choy is a delicious addition to any meal.
- Key Characteristics: Bok choy is a leafy green vegetable with a mild and slightly bitter taste. While it may not have the same texture as mung beans, it can bring a delightful freshness to recipes.
- Proper Ratio: Use an equal amount of bok choy as a substitute for mung beans. Adjust the quantity based on personal preference and desired level of bitterness.
5 – Enoki
Enoki mushrooms are a type of edible fungi native to East Asia.
While they may be new to some people, enoki mushrooms have been enjoyed for centuries in East Asia and are now beginning to gain popularity worldwide.
They have long, thin stems and small, white caps, and they are often used in soups and stir-fries.
Enoki mushrooms are a good source of vitamins and minerals, and they are also thought to have medicinal properties.
In traditional Chinese medicine, enoki mushrooms are used to treat coughing and wheezing, and they are also believed to boost the immune system.
In recent years, enoki mushrooms have become popular in Western countries, where they are sold fresh in grocery stores or dried in Asian markets.
- Key Characteristics: Enoki mushrooms are delicate and mild, with a crisp texture. Although different from mung beans, they can add a unique element to dishes.
- Proper Ratio: Use an equal amount of enoki mushrooms as a substitute for mung beans. Adjust the quantity based on personal preference and desired level of mushroom flavor.
Mung beans are a versatile ingredient that can be used in various dishes.
While they have a distinct flavor, they can be easily substituted with other beans or legumes.
Each of these options has a similar texture and can be used in many of the same dishes.
So if you’re looking for a mung bean substitute, any of these options would be a great choice.
The 5 Best Substitutes for Mung Beans
- Sunflower Sprouts
- Snow Peas
- Bamboo Shoots
- Bok Choy
- Pick your favorite substitute from the list above.
- Follow cooking directions for your selected substitute with the proper ratio of ingredients.
Andrew Gray is a seasoned food writer and blogger with a wealth of experience in the restaurant and catering industries. With a passion for all things delicious, Andrew has honed his culinary expertise through his work as a personal chef and caterer.
His love for food led him to venture into food writing, where he has contributed to various online publications, sharing his knowledge and insights on the culinary world. As the proud owner of AmericasRestaurant.com, Andrew covers a wide range of topics, including recipes, restaurant reviews, product recommendations, and culinary tips.
Through his website, he aims to inspire and educate fellow food enthusiasts, offering a comprehensive resource for all things food-related.