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Using whole grains

It’s useful to stock your kitchen with essentials for building a variety of healthy and delicious meals--starting with whole grains.

couple looking at grains

Why use whole grains?

whole grain partsWhole grains contain a variety of nutrients, including vitamins, minerals, fiber, and protein. These nutrients aid in digestion, remove toxins from our bodies, help decrease inflammation, and help stabilize your body’s blood sugar.

Whole grains are considered “whole” because the three components of the grain are maintained. With refined grains the bran and the germ are stripped away leaving the starchy endosperm, which has limited nutritional value.

Examples of Whole Grains
  • Brown Rice
  • Millet
  • Quinoa
  • Barley
  • Farro
  • Oats
  • Rye
  • Corn
  • Wild Rice
  • Bulgur
Examples of Refined Grains
  • Pasta
  • White Rice
  • Instant Oatmeal
  • “Whole wheat flour”
  • “All purpose flour”
  • Pastries
  • Donuts
  • Cakes
Title
Building a Pantry: Whole Grains
Video

Cooking Whole Grains

Cooking whole grains is simple, especially when cooking enough for multiple meals.  Whole grains can be made ahead of time, stored in a refrigerator, and added to meals throughout the week.  Check below for some tips on cooking whole grains.

Barley

barley

  • 3 cups water per 1 cup barley.
  • Bring to a boil, cover with lid, lower heat, and cook 30-45 minutes for pearl barley or 90 minutes for hulled barley.
Wild Rice

wild rice

  • 4 cups water per 1 cup rice.
  • Bring to boil, cover with lid, lower heat, and cook for 45-60 minutes or until rice splits open; drain excess water in a colander.
Oats

oats

  • 2 cups water per 1 cup oats.
  • Bring to a boil, cover with lid, lower heat, and cook for 10-20 minutes, stirring frequently.
Brown Rice

brown rice

  • 2 cups water per 1 cup rice.
  • Bring to a boil, cover with lid, lower heat, and cook for 30 minutes. Turn off heat, and steam 10-15 minutes with lid on.
Millet

millet

  • 2 cups water per 1 cup millet.
  • Dry roast in pot until toasted and fragrant. 
  • Add boiling water. Cover with lid, lower heat, and cook for 20 minutes.
Quinoa

quinoa

  • 2 cups water per 1 cup quinoa.
  • Rinse quinoa, and then dry roast in pot until toasted and fragrant. 
  • Add boiling water, cover with lid, lower heat, and cook for 20 minutes.
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