Keep Toasty in the Morning: Spiced Amaranth Porridge with Dates and Pecans

Chilly fall mornings call for piping hot breakfasts. This porridge fits the bill and the added spices make it all the more invigorating. If you’re looking to change up your morning oatmeal routine, give amaranth a go. Though it takes a few extra minutes to cook, its mild, nutty flavor and nutrients make it well worth the time. It also maintains a slight crunch after cooking.

Although amaranth is one of the smallest grains around, it also happens to be one of the highest in protein. Topped with toasted pecans and chopped dates and served with a splash of almond milk, this breakfast is sure to keep you going until lunch time.

Spiced Amaranth Porridge with Dates and Pecans

You will need a fine mesh strainer to drain the soaked amaranth. If you don’t have one it is fine to cook the amaranth without soaking but you may need to add a little more water to get desired consistency toward the end of cooking.

Serves 2


1/2 cup amaranth, soaked overnight in a cup of water

1 1/4 cup water

Pinch sea salt

5 cardamom pods

2 whole star anise

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon orange zest

To serve:

Almond milk, preferably homemade

2 Medjool dates, chopped

2 tablespoons chopped toasted pecans

Raw honey or maple syrup


Drain and rinse amaranth, and place it in a small pot. Add water, salt, cardamom, star anise and cinnamon; bring to a boil over high heat. Stir, cover pot, lower heat and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes or until mixture is thick.

Add more water to get desired consistency or cook uncovered for a few minutes to thicken it up. Remove from heat and remove and discard spices. Divide into bowls, top with almond milk, dates, pecans and honey. Serve piping hot.

Related Links:

Amy Chaplin is a chef and recipe developer in New York City. Her cookbook At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen is available this fall. She blogs at Coconut & Quinoa.

Photo: Stephen Kent Johnson

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