By Team Dirty
Jan 29, 2022,
If you’ve been following us for a while, you know we love a good batched breakfast. Something we can cook up in the Instant Pot once or twice a week that makes mornings easy and nourishing has Team Dirty written all over it. This Gluten-Free Porridge is a Molly Patrick original—her secret ingredient might surprise you! She also shares her tips for an easy morning.
We’ve rhapsodized more than once about how simple and satisfying it is to dish up some porridge straight from the fridge, top it with fresh fruit, nuts, and non-dairy milk and nosh your way to a great morning. We now proudly bring you Gluten-Free Porridge.
This latest addition to our Porridge Hall of Fame (it was only a matter of time) is going to level up your porridge game. It’s nutritious, delicious, easy to have on hand for busy mornings, and deeply satisfying. Molly created this recipe because she was tired of getting hungry again not long after starting her day with steel cut oats. So, she got to work, seriously upped the nutritional diversity, and created something amazing. Ready to know what makes this plant based porridge so special? Let’s dive in.
What’s inside our Gluten-Free Porridge
At first glance, you might be thinking, “Wait, is that kale…in porridge?” Or, “I’ve never considered eating lentils for breakfast.” But hear us out and #TrustTeamDirty. Have we ever led you astray? Our Gluten-Free Porridge is more than the sum of its parts.
Millet: this cereal grain boasts high protein, fiber, and antioxidants. It helps keep you full longer while fueling your body with nutrients.
Buckwheat: this pseudocereal (not technically a cereal grain but often used like one) is high in carbs but low on the glycemic index, so it gives you energy without spiking your blood sugar. It’s also much higher in mineral content than many cereal grains.
Black lentils: also known as beluga lentils. This seemingly strange addition is key to both the flavor and the heartiness of the porridge. Black lentils have a rich, earthy flavor and are high in protein like most legumes. That extra protein assists in keeping us satiated.
Steel cut oats: the less processed cousin of more ubiquitous rolled oats, steel cut oats are a great source of fiber. They’re also low on the glycemic index and have been shown to have positive impacts on cholesterol.
Kale: we don’t have to tell you that kale is a nutritional powerhouse. Its somewhat unorthodox use here adds all the vitamin, mineral, and phytochemical goodness of dark leafy greens while being hearty enough to deliver on flavor and texture after cooking.
Dried fruit: adding dried fruit before cooking is a stroke of genius (if we do say so ourselves). The fruit rehydrates while cooking and adds subtle but bright pops of sweetness to every other bite. Plus, rotating what kind of dried fruit you use ups the ante even more on nutrient diversity.
Toppings: we highly recommend adding a variety of fresh fruits, nuts (toasted or not), and non-dairy milk of your choice. This is a great way to keep it fresh and play with textures. Molly’s favorite combo is raspberries, pears, raisins, and chopped walnuts and she always tops her porridge with unsweetened soy milk.
Making Gluten-Free Porridge
Getting this all-star on your breakfast table is super easy. You can make it in the Instant Pot or on your stove top (or your rice cooker—keep reading for that hack).
First, soak your grains and lentils overnight so they’re easy to cook to perfection. Place them all in the same bowl, cover with about two inches of water and soak for at least eight hours.
After soaking, drain your grains and lentils, discard the soaking water, and rinse in a fine-mesh strainer. Sometimes lentils have sand or debris. No biggie, if you see some pick it out and toss it.
Place your soaked, drained, and rinsed grains and lentils in the inner pot of your Instant Pot, and add the rest of the ingredients including the 2 cups of fresh water. Give everything a quick stir.
Lock the lid into place, making sure the nozzle is in the sealing position. Use the Manual (or Pressure Cooking) mode and set the timer for 13 minutes.
Once the time is up, allow the pressure to release on its own (natural release method). When the pressure has gone down and the sealing valve is released, take off the lid and stir.
Remove the inner pot with your cooked porridge and allow to cool on your counter until room temperature before transferring to a container and storing in the fridge. If it looks thin or watery, don’t worry, your porridge will thicken as it cools. If it looks too thick, add some water and stir. We don’t recommend serving immediately.
Place your soaked, drained, and rinsed lentils and grains into a large pot, like a dutch oven or a stock pot over high heat, and add the rest of the ingredients including the 2 cups of fresh water.
Bring your porridge to a boil, then lower the heat to medium-low and cover the pot. Cook for 20 minutes, then turn off the heat but keep the lid on. Allow the pot to sit like this for 20 minutes. This allows your grains and lentils extra time to absorb the cooking water.
Remove the lid, stir, and allow to cool on your counter until room temperature before transferring to a container and storing in the fridge. If it looks thin or watery, don’t worry, your porridge will thicken as it cools. If it looks too thick, add some water and stir. We don’t recommend serving immediately.
Serve your Gluten-Free Porridge
Place a portion of cold porridge into a bowl and top with fresh fruit, nuts, and a splash of any non-dairy milk you like. The sky’s the limit here, try different combos of fruit and nuts and mix it up frequently.
If cold porridge doesn’t sound like something you’d enjoy, we encourage you to give it a try—it’s our absolute favorite way to eat it.
One of our Facebook community members likes to make hers in a rice cooker. Just double the water, use whatever settings you would for brown rice, and you’ll be good to go.
Streamline your mornings
This recipe makes about 3 cups and we like to make a batch to have on hand for up to five days. The recipe doubles easily if the need arises.
Molly likes to start her day with a mug of warm water and a bowl of porridge. She’s perfected her streamlined routine:
- Before going to bed at night, she fills her tea kettle with water and puts her mug next to it.
- She lays out two bowls on the counter along with a cutting board for chopping her fresh fruit topping.
- When she wakes up, she turns on the kettle and dishes out her and Luanne’s porridge, chops her fruit, and has breakfast ready without a fuss.
Having everything laid out and ready to go helps her begin the day with intention. She and Luanne have eaten this Gluten-Free Porridge every day for over two years and it keeps them full for hours.
It’s a great on-the-go breakfast, too. Just dish it into a lidded container (we like a 16-oz mason jar), add a splash of non-dairy milk and your toppings, throw on the lid, grab a spoon, and head out the door. Permission to hit the snooze button one more time totally granted.
Delicious substitutions for Gluten-Free Porridge
This recipe is super easy to tweak. In fact, you can switch up the millet, buckwheat, and oats with almost any other grain or pseudocereal. We recommend always having three grains and one type of lentil to maintain the nutrient, flavor, and texture diversity that works so well.
Here are some substitution ideas:
- Brown lentils
- Green lentils
- Black rice
- Red rice
- Amaranth (use half the amount called for)
- Teff (use half the amount called for)
Brown rice is a bit too starchy, so we don’t recommend it.
We hope this Gluten-Free Porridge is your new favorite breakfast and you enjoy it as much as we do. Be sure to check out more healthy porridge recipes available for free on our blog.
Let us know what fun variations and topping mixes you come up with in the comments below.
- ¼ cup millet (50 g)
- ¼ cup buckwheat (toasted or not) (41 g)
- ¼ cup black lentils (AKA beluga lentils) (45 g)
- ¼ cup steel cut oats (not instant or rolled) (40 g)
- 2 cups kale, chopped (136 g)
- ¼ cup dried fruit (any variety / dried bananas, dates, apricots, or figs work well)
- 2 cups water
- fresh fruit
- nuts (toasted or not)
- non-dairy milk (any variety, unsweetened or not)
- Place your grains and lentils in a bowl and cover with water. Let sit for at least 8 hours or overnight.
- Strain the grains and lentils. Rinse in a fine-mesh strainer, pick out and discard any sand or debris. Place the rinsed grains and lentils in the inner pot of your Instant Pot. Add the rest of the ingredients including the 2 cups of fresh water.
- Lock the lid into place, making sure the nozzle is in the sealing position. Use the Manual (or Pressure Cooking) mode and set the timer for 13 minutes.
- When time is up, use the natural release. After all the pressure is out of the pot, remove the lid and stir.
- Remove the pot and allow it to cool completely before transferring to a container and storing in your fridge.
- Place your grains and lentils in a bowl and cover with water. Let sit for at least 8 hours or overnight.
- Strain the grains and lentils. Rinse in a fine-mesh strainer, pick out and discard any sand or debris. Place the grains and lentils in a large pot on high heat. Add the rest of the ingredients including the 2 cups of fresh water.
- Bring to a boil and lower the heat to medium-low. Place a lid on the pot.
- Cook for 20 minutes then turn off the heat but keep the lid on and allow to sit for 20 minutes.
- Remove the lid, stir, and cool completely before transferring to a container to store in your fridge.
- Place a portion of cold porridge into a bowl and top with fresh fruit, nuts, and a splash of non-dairy milk. Enjoy your delicious, satisfying breakfast!
May you enjoy easy mornings that leave you feeling energized and ready for the day!
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This turned out great! I used steel cut oats, black lentils, rye berries and barley since I didn’t have millet or buckwheat on hand. I added dates as the dried fruit. Very filling and tasty with fresh blackberries, hemp seeds, walnuts and almond milk on top. Looking forward to adding this to my regular breakfast rotation.
We’re so happy to hear you loved it, Megan! It’s definitely a keeper.
Thank you for this – I’m making it now! How many servings is this recipe? I know it makes 3 cups, but 1/2 cup per serving? Thanks!
My porridge is cooling down on the counter as we speak! We are lax with servings. I’d say between 1/2 and 3/4 cup. It’s quite filling. Let us know how you like it!
This stuff is amazing! Will definitely become a breakfast staple for us. Served it up with oat milk, a sprinkle of hemp hearts, and some almond butter. Yum!!!
I was skeptical about the ingredients for this porridge so I had to give it a try. I was amazed by the deliciousness. I added frozen blueberries, raspberries and blackberries to the porridge then warmed it a short bit. I also added walnuts and soy milk before digging in. So yummy! Thank you for this recipe ☺️
Does anyone who makes this have an opinion about whether this tastes better hot or cold? It looks like the recipe recommends eating it cold? Thanks so much!
I’ve only eaten it cold, but it smells delicious when it’s done cooking so you could probably eat it warm if you prefer.
Molly prefers it cold! I have tried it both ways and I typically like it cold as well.
I like the grains heated up slightly. Then add cold milk and toppings afterwards