The Super-Nutritious Grain

Quinoa gets a lot of well-deserved attention these days, but amaranth is gluten-free, high in protein and delicious in so many ways.

Amaranth, like Quinoa, is an ancient grain that’s enjoying renewed popularity because of its exceptional nutritional profile. It’s found in many healthy foods these days, from breakfast cereal to nutrition bars. Many active people are choosing it because it’s gluten-free and works as a substitute for wheat, barley and rice. Here’s what you need to know about it and a few ideas on how to enjoy it. 

Nutritional Standout
Check out this comparison between brown rice, quinoa and amaranth.**

 GRAIN BROWN RICE QUINOA AMARANTH
CALORIES 216 223 252
CARBOHYDRATE 45 grams 39 grams 46 grams
FIBER 3.5 grams 5 grams 5 grams
PROTEIN 5 grams 8 grams 9 grams
IRON* 4% 15% 28%
CALCIUM* 2% 3% 11%
MAGNESIUM* 21% 29% 40%

*Based on 2000 calorie diet. Values may differ depending on calorie needs.

** Source: USDA

Popping brings out amaranth’s nutty flavor and crunchy texture.

Simple Preparation
You can cook amaranth like you would quinoa or rice. Or you can add milk, nuts, and berries to make a delicious breakfast warm or cold. Even better, you can pop it. Yup, like popcorn. This brings out amaranth’s nutty flavor and crunchy texture.

Pop it by heating a skillet over medium heat until very hot. Add just enough amaranth to cover the bottom. Too much at once and it will make cook unevenly. Shake the pot or move seeds around constantly until popping slows down just like you would popcorn. You can use the popped amaranth to make delicious dishes like these.

Parfait: Mix it with your Greek yogurt, walnuts and berries.

Smoothie: Blend 1 cup of unsweetened almond/coconut milk, 1 cup of water, 1 frozen banana, 1 tablespoon of nut butter (almond, cashew or peanut), 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract, 1 tablespoon of chia seeds, 1/3 cup of popped amaranth.

Salad: Sprinkle some atop your raw vegetable salad at lunch for a little extra nutritional crunch.

 

 

 

 

 




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