Learn from this quick and easy guide on how to perfectly cook millet in a rice cooker, Instant Pot, microwave and on the stovetop.
Millet is one of my favourite grain alternatives to rice. In fact, it’s so versatile and nutritious that I recommend making it a part of your regular pantry items.
Millet can be used to make porridge, in stir-fries, salads, burgers and in almost any recipes that call for rice, quinoa or any other grains. Millet can also be ground into flour and used in various baking recipes.
What is millet?
Millet is an ancient grain or seed that was first found in Africa and the northern parts of China. It’s known for being naturally gluten-free and having a mildly sweet corn flavour.
Where to buy millet
Millet can be found in both grocery stores and natural food stores. They will usually be located in the whole grain aisle, but sometimes they can be found in the baking or cereal aisles. Millet can also be found online on Amazon.
Does millet need to be soaked before cooking?
While most grains typically need to be soaked for about 12-24 hours, millet is one of the few exceptions. You can cook it without having to soak it. Nonetheless, it’s okay to soak millet before cooking.
Can millet cause gas or bloating?
As with many whole grains or seeds, millet can cause gas or bloating if eaten excessively. Eating moderate portions of this grain can help you avoid this problem. Soaking can also help reduce gas and bloating effects if you are sensitive to grains.
Can millet be sprouted?
Yes, you can sprout millet. To accomplish this:
1. Soak the seeds in cool water for at least 6 hours. Rinse and drain thoroughly with cool water.
2. Place the strainer with the millet over a large bowl to continue draining throughout the day. Avoid the strainer touching the water in the bowl to prevent the millet from becoming mouldy. You won’t need to place them near any sunlight.
3. Repeat the rinsing and draining process 2 times per day with cool water every 8 to 12 hours. On the second or third day, your sprouts should be done growing.
4. For storage, you can put the sprouts in a container and place them in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
How healthy is millet
Millet has a variety of different nutrients. Some of them include calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, and vitamin B6.
In particular, it’s very high in fibre and protein and low in fat. One cup of cooked millet provides 2g of fibre, 1.7g fat and 6g of protein (source).
How to cook millet in a rice cooker
1. Rinse 1 cup of millet in cool water.
2. Pour about 2 cups of water or broth into your rice cooker. Add the millet.
3. Next, turn on your rice cooker or select the “white rice” setting to cook. Most will shut off after 20 minutes.
4. Once the rice cooker switches off, allow the millet to rest for another 10 minutes before opening the lid to serve.
How to cook millet in an Instant Pot
The Instant Pot method for cooking millet is perhaps the simplest one:
1. Add 1 cup millet and 2 cups of water or broth to the Instant Pot. Close the lid and set the instant pot to high. Time it for 10 minutes.
2. Once the pressure has released, remove the lid, and your millet is ready to eat.
How to cook millet on the stovetop
1. Add 2 cups of water to a pot and bring to a boil.
2. Add 1 cup millet. Cover the pot with a lid and reduce the heat to simmer. Let the millet cook for 15 to 20 minutes.
3. If there’s any remaining water, drain it. Once drained, the dish can be served.
How to cook millet in the microwave
1. Grab a microwave-safe bowl and add 1 cup of millet and 2 cups of water. Cover the bowl and set the microwave on high for 20 minutes or more, until the water has been fully absorbed.
2. Get a dishtowel, and carefully remove the bowl from the microwave. Let it cool for about five minutes before serving.
What to eat with millet
You can serve millet as you would rice with many different types of food. You can serve it with vegetables, beans and even cooked like a pilaf.
Millet can be made into porridge as an alternative to breakfast oatmeal or used as a stuffing or filling for burgers. One of my favourite ways to have millet is with some baked beans and steamed broccoli for a quick lunch or dinner.
How to Cook Millet in a Rice Cooker (Instant Pot, Stovetop or Microwave)
- 1 cup millet, (220g, rinsed in cool water)
- 2 cups water or broth, (473ml)
Rice Cooker Method
- Add millet and water or broth to your rice cooker.
- Turn it on or select the “white rice” setting to cook. Most will shut off after 20 minutes.
- Once the rice cooker switches off, allow the millet to rest for another 10 minutes before opening the lid to serve.
Instant Pot Method
- Add millet and water or broth to the Instant Pot. Close the lid and set it to high. Time it for 10 minutes.
- Once the pressure has released, remove the lid, and your millet is ready to eat.
- Add the water or broth to a pot and bring to a boil.
- Add the millet. Cover the pot with a lid and reduce the heat to simmer. Let the millet cook for 15 to 20 minutes.
- If there’s any remaining water, drain it. Once drained, the dish can be served.
- Grab a microwave-safe bowl and add the millet and water. Cover the bowl and set the microwave on high for 20 minutes or more, until the water has been fully absorbed.
- Get a dishtowel, and carefully remove the bowl from the microwave. Let it cool for about five minutes before serving.
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