Embracing Ancient Grains: Benefits and Recipes

AAlex September 3, 2023 9:31 AM

Ancient grains have been enjoying a revival in the past few years, and for good reason. Not only are these grains delicious, they pack a nutritional punch that modern grains can't match. In this article, we will delve into the benefits of ancient grains and explore some delicious recipes.

What are Ancient Grains?

Ancient grains are grains that have remained largely unchanged for several hundred or even thousands of years. Unlike modern grains, which have been selectively bred and heavily processed, ancient grains are often consumed in their whole grain form, offering a host of health benefits.

Here are a few examples of ancient grains:

  • Quinoa
  • Amaranth
  • Millet
  • Spelt
  • Farro

Health Benefits of Ancient Grains

The health benefits of ancient grains come from their rich nutritional content. They are high in protein, fiber, and a variety of essential vitamins and minerals. Here are some of the key benefits:

  • High in Fiber: Ancient grains are high in dietary fiber, which aids in digestion and can help in weight management.

  • Rich in Protein: Grains like quinoa and amaranth are excellent sources of plant-based protein.

  • Packed with Vitamins and Minerals: Ancient grains contain a variety of vitamins and minerals, including B vitamins, iron, and magnesium.

  • Heart Healthy: The fiber and nutrients in ancient grains can help lower cholesterol, reducing the risk of heart disease.

Cooking with Ancient Grains

Ancient grains are versatile and can be incorporated into a variety of dishes. Here are a few ways to use them:

  • In Salads: Cooked ancient grains can add a hearty texture to salads. Try a quinoa salad with fresh veggies and a light dressing.

  • As a Side Dish: Ancient grains can replace rice or pasta as a side dish. Try a warm farro salad with roasted vegetables.

  • In Soups: Add ancient grains like millet or amaranth to soups for extra nutrition and texture.

Recipes with Ancient Grains

Here are a few recipes to help you get started with ancient grains.

Quinoa Salad


  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 cucumber, diced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Rinse the quinoa under cold water until the water runs clear.

  2. Combine the quinoa and water in a pot, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and cover. Let it simmer until the water is absorbed and the quinoa is cooked.

  3. In a large bowl, combine the cooked quinoa, cucumber, bell pepper, olive oil, lemon juice, and salt and pepper. Mix well.

  4. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour before serving.

The awakening of ancient grains in our modern diet is not merely a trend, but a testament to their nutritional superiority and versatile use in a variety of dishes.

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