Gluten-free Whole Grain Sorghum

My taste buds have discovered a new gluten-free grain that I bought after reading an article about how sorghum whole grain could be popped into a gluten-free popcorn.   I wasn’t able to find sorghum whole grain in the stores, so I ordered mine online from and it arrived at our remote cottage on Lake Huron along with a few other goodies in less than a week.  I was impressed !

Whole Grain Sorghum

Whole Grain Sorghum

I bought some brown paper lunch bags and was excited to make a batch of  homemade gluten-free popcorn.  I put a handful of sorghum grains in the paper bag along with a little butter and in the microwave it went.  I was sorely disappointed with the results as the popped grain is only a quarter of the size of normal popcorn and it’s so ridiculously small that I wouldn’t waste any time or money on popping this grain.

But what I did discover is that whole grain sorghum is a tasty alternative for quinoa or rice and it’s gluten free.  I first tried the recipe on the back of the packaging which I will discuss in a future blog post.  Sorghum takes about an hour to cook so make sure you plan ahead before making a salad or meal with this grain.  The ratio for cooking is 3 to 1.  So in 3 cups of water add 1 cup of sorghum grain and a teaspoon of salt.  Bring to a boil then turn it down to a low simmer for about an hour.  Make sure to set a timer and check it at about 50 minutes to account for different cooking times and stoves.   When finished it should be firm but not crunchie.  There may be a bit of water left and it may look a bit creamy so just rinse the sorghum grain under cold water and store in the fridge until you are ready to put together your salad.

Here is an excerpt from the “Whole Grain” explaining sorghum’s history and benefits:

Sorghum [Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench] is known under a great many names: milo, guinea corn in West Africa, kafir corn in South Africa, dura in Sudan, mtama in eastern Africa, jowar in India and kaoliang in China.

Sorghum is an ancient cereal grain and was collected 8000 years ago in Southern Egypt, in a place called Nabta Playa. Sorghum was domesticated in Ethiopia and Sudan and from there moved throughout all of Africa, where it remains an important cereal grain.

But being gluten-free isn’t sorghum’s only bragging right. It’s also a whole grain that provides many other nutritional benefits. Sorghum, which doesn’t have an inedible hull like some other grains, is commonly eaten with all its outer layers, thereby retaining the majority of its nutrients.  Sorghum also is grown from traditional hybrid seeds and does not contain traits gained through biotechnology, making it nontransgenic (non-GMO).

Some specialty sorghums are high in antioxidants, which are believed to help lower the risk of cancer, diabetes, heart disease and some neurological diseases. In addition, the wax surrounding the sorghum grain contains compounds called policosanols, that may have an impact on human cardiac health. Some researchers, in fact, believe that policosanols have cholesterol-lowering potency comparable to that of statins.

Click here for my Roasted Veggie Whole Grain Sorghum Salad Recipe!

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