What Is Porridge?

Aside from being one of the most famous foods in fairy tales and nursery rhymes, porridge is actually a good, hearty breakfast food you can eat in real life. Essentially boiled, mushed up grains or other plant matter, porridge starts your day healthily and robustly. But that’s just the start. What is porridge, really? Allow us to shed a little light on porridge, and show you that Goldilocks had the right idea when she gobbled up three bowls of the stuff before going about the rest of her day! Let’s talk porridge, people! 

What is porridge made of?

Porridge is made of grains such as oats, quinoa, barley, farro, or rice cooked in liquid such as water, milk, or milk alternatives. Making porridge is so simple that even a bear could do it! Although, according to that particular text, it takes a few bowls to get it “just right.”  

Is porridge oatmeal?

Oatmeal is a type of porridge—but not all porridge is oatmeal. Oatmeal is always made from rolled, ground, or flattened oats, but porridge is not always made from oats. That said, the two words are occasionally used interchangeably. 

What are porridge oats?

From our research, it seems like porridge oats is just the British/Scottish/Canadian way of saying “oatmeal.” Products labeled “porridge oats” typically consist of quick-cooking rolled oats (aka oatmeal here in the States). However, porridge oats can also contain other grains and flax seed, as well. 

What is rice porridge?

Rice porridge is a type of porridge made with…you guessed it…rice and water. The rice is simmered in a pot with water until it disintegrates. In China, rice porridge is called Congee. It’s often eaten with savory mix-ins like chicken, dried shrimp, jammy eggs, and chile oil. But rice porridge is popular all over Asia. In Japan, rice porridge is called okayu. In Korea it’s called juk. You get the point—rice porridge is a big deal!

Is Cream of Wheat porridge?

Cream of Wheat is an American brand of farina, a type of milled wheat. It looks a lot like grits, but is smoother in texture since it is made with ground wheat kernels instead of ground corn. It is considered porridge canon, according to the porridge wiki we’re constructing. 

What is pease porridge?

Well, according to the old rhyme, pease porridge is hot, cold, and “in the pot nine days old.” But, since that amounts to a lot of stuff that doesn’t make sense, we’re here to let you know that, on a more official level, pease porridge is a savory porridge made of boiled legumes—usually split yellow peas—with water, salt, and spices. Sorry our definition doesn’t rhyme!

When it comes to classic breakfast sludges (and we use that term affectionately! Some of the most delicious things in the world are sludge!) porridge easily tops the list. Goldilocks had the right idea, and we’d gladly risk the ire of a rogue family of bears to get a taste of the stuff.

About the Author

Joe Rumrill

Joe Rumrill is a fictional one-eyed spinach-loving sailor created in 1929 by E.C Se- Wait, no, that's not right... Joe Rumrill is a stand up comedian and writer currently based in Los Angeles. His favorite thing about food is a close tie between the taste and the nutrients one gets from it. His least favorite thing about it is the "gritty, dirt-like quality some food has", but he's most likely referring to the time in third grade he was dared to eat playground sand.

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