Chances are, you’ve probably never heard of this amazing Aztec grain called Amaranth… in fact, they say only 4% of the population has even tried it! But it is a fantastic super food to add to your diet. The Aztec’s revered this grain as “The Grain of the god’s.” Amaranth is gluten free, because it’s not actually a grain (even though people call it one)…. it’s a seed!
Amaranth derives its name from the Greek for “never fading flower.” It’s an excellent substitute to gluten, and is a great source of plant protein. It contains two essential amino acids called lysine and methionine, and is packed with iron and calcium.
Benefits of Amaranth:
- High in Fiber- Move on over wheat! Amaranth’s fiber content triples that of wheat! This makes it great for the digestive system & makes it easier to loose weight.
- Anti-inflammatory- It reduces inflammation in the body.
- Good source of Protein – One cup of cooked amaranth contains 9 grams of protein.
- High in Calcium- Great for bone health.
- Lowers Cholesterol – Eating high fiber foods helps lower cholesterol.
- Gluten Free- Amaranth is an excellent source of vitamins and minerals for anyone following a gluten free diet.
How to Cook Amaranth:
I’ve read many different ways to cook Amaranth, but I prefer to do it this way:
- Pre-soak the Amaranth in water for at least 2 hours prior to cooking.
- I usually pre-rinse nuts/seeds/legumes before cooking (Click Here to Read More about why you should pre-soak), but Amaranth grain is so small that some of it goes through my strainer. If you want to pre-rinse, you can use a cheesecloth to strain it.
- Make sure there is a TON of water! You want at least a 1 to 4 ratio (1 Cup Amaranth to 4 cups water).
- Cook over low-medium heat for 30-40 minutes.
- It will thicken up and absorb the water, so check on it to make sure you have enough in there.
- Occasionally stir.
- Store in fridge for 6-7 days or store in Freezer.
How to Use it:
- Smoothies- My favorite way to eat it is in a smoothie. To me, Amaranth has a rather bitter taste to it, but if I add it to my smoothie I don’t notice the flavor at all. Some of my other friends enjoy the raw taste of amaranth, so you be the judge! Click here for my vegan chocolate frosty recipe.
- Flour Substitute- You can use amaranth flour as a flour substitute in recipes.
- Cereal- make an “oatmeal” like cereal out of it. You can add in sweetener and berries.
JUST EAT REAL FOOD – Stop focusing on calories & focus on what you’re eating and how it makes you feel. Your body is always giving you signals, but many times we ignore them. Pay attention if you develop nausea, gas, bloating, abdominal pain, diarrhea, constipation, headaches, joint pain, rashes, sinus problems, or cold sores. If you develop any of these things after eating, it’s a good indicator that your body is giving you a clue to stop consuming something in your food. Many times these symptoms come from consuming chemicals, artificial coloring, and preservatives. Other times these symptoms can occur from a food allergy or sensitivity. Pay attention. Creating a food diary is a really great way to help you figure out what your triggers are. Food elimination diets are a great way to figure out what your triggers are.
Information in this posting is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Talk to your medical provider before starting any new supplements or medications.