This Chinese millet porridge recipe (小米粥, xiao mi zhou) is a popular staple food to serve as breakfast. It has a slightly nutty flavor and can be prepared quickly and easily. Usually, Chinese millet porridge has a thick texture, like oatmeal. This golden yellow porridge is a delicious and healthy way to start your day.
What is millet?
Millet is one of the world's oldest grains, initially cultivated in Asia. It isn't related to wheat; it's part of the grass family and resembles small corn kernels. Millet has been a staple food in lots of Asian countries for centuries. It has become popular as an alternative to wheat for those with digestive problems caused by gluten sensitivity.
Millet: It is the main ingredient of millet porridge. Remember to rinse them well before cooking. There are many types of millet out there, and my mom always likes to use glutinous millet, which has a sticky texture. I always get mine from the Asian markets. Foxtail millet is another good choice. You can get your millet either in the grocery store or online.
Sweet potatoes: They add a creamy texture to the millet porridge, my favorite add-on ingredient! By cooking sweet potatoes without adding sugar, you can intensify their natural sweetness. If you do not like sweet potatoes, you can substitute squash or pumpkin chunks. Other grains like rice or barley work well too!
Dried red dates: They add extra flavor and color to this recipe. You can also use goji berries. It is optional.
Water: A good ratio for me is 1 cup of millet to 10 cups of water. Please feel free to adjust as you need to.
Besides millet porridge, you can mix millet with other grains like brown rice or barley to make different dishes.
How to make Chinese millet porridge
Making Chinese millet porridge is super easy if you cook it properly. The first step is to rinse the millet under the running water until the water runs clear. Drain and set aside. Bring water to a boil in a large pot, then slowly pour the rinsed millet and sweet potato chunks into the pot. Gently stir to blend well.
Continue boiling until the water returns to boil again. Skim the foam from the top. (optional) Stir often so the food doesn't stick to the bottom of the pot.
Turn the heat down to low heat, and let it simmer for about 30 minutes until a softer texture reaches your desired consistency. Add dates as a garnish(optional). Turn off the heat, and serve warm in a small bowl with side dishes. Enjoy!
Tips: If you prefer a thicker consistency, cook a little longer. If you prefer a more liquid texture, reduce the cooking time.
You can also cook millet porridge in the rice cooker or instant pot. Cooking time may vary; please check the manual for details before use.
Adding flavor to millet porridge
Most Chinese people love to enjoy the millet porridge plain. Feel free to add flavors to millet porridge, such as rock sugar, honey, or your favorite sweeteners. You can enjoy a variety of millet porridge that fits your tastes and nutrition needs.
What to serve with millet porridge
Here are a few more dishes that pair well with Chinese millet porridge:
Pan-fried shiitake mushrooms
Millet is very nutritious and contains protein, iron, minerals, and vitamin C and B vitamins. It is also an excellent source of dietary fiber with antioxidants that help boost immunity. Millet is an all-in-one food source for maintaining good health.
Furthermore, millet has been shown to help lower cholesterol levels in people with diabetes. Millet has a low glycemic index (GI), meaning it does not cause rapid blood sugar levels after eating them, unlike other carbohydrate-rich foods such as potatoes, pasta, etc., which cause sudden spikes in glucose levels.
The best thing about millet is that it is gluten-free and vegan food!
Store and reheat
The millet porridge can be refrigerated in an airtight bag for up to 3 days. You can reheat it in the microwave for 2 minutes or less. (Depending on the amount of the millet porridge). You can also reheat the millet porridge with a few water splashes in a saucepan.
Share this Chinese millet porridge recipe with friends and family. Start making delicious millet porridge for breakfast today! I hope you enjoyed reading this post. Please feel free to leave a comment below about what you think. Happy cooking!
Chinese Millet Porridge Recipe
- 1 cup millet
- 2 cups sweet potato peeled and chopped into chunks
- 4 dates
- 10 cups of water
- Rinse the millet under the running water until the water runs clear. Drain and set aside.
- Bring water to a boil in a large pot, then slowly pour the rinsed millet and sweet potato chunks into the pot. Gently stir to blend well.
- Continue boiling until the water returns to boil again. Skim the foam from the top. (optional) Stir often so the food doesn't stick to the bottom of the pot.
- Turn the heat down to low heat, and let it simmer for about 30 minutes until a softer texture reaches your desired consistency.
- Turn off the heat, and serve warm in a small bowl with side dishes. Enjoy!
- If you prefer a thicker consistency, cook a little longer. If you prefer a more liquid texture, reduce the cooking time.
- You can also cook millet porridge in the rice cooker or instant pot. Cooking time may vary; please check the manual for details before use.