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What Is Buckwheat Cereal?

By J. Airman
Updated May 16, 2024
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The term buckwheat cereal can refer to buckwheat grains, or it can be a breakfast cereal containing buckwheat. Breakfast cereal made from buckwheat grains can be hot or cold, and may be eaten with added milk. A hearty grain, the flavor of buckwheat is widely considered to be more potent and earthy than wheat. Contrary to popular belief, buckwheat is not technically a grain, but a fruit, which makes it a popular choice for people on traditional grain and gluten-restricted diets.

The most common way to eat buckwheat cereal is to consume it hot. This cereal can be made of milled buckwheat served all by itself, or it can be a combination of other types of milled grains. Generally, hot buckwheat cereal is made by cooking it in hot water until it begins to swell and become soft. This type of buckwheat cereal is often served with nuts, dried fruit or bananas to add sweetness and flavor.

A less common type of cereal containing buckwheat is cold boxed breakfast cereal. Most cold buckwheat cereals come in the form of flakes, like those found in raisin bran or corn flakes, but some cereals containing buckwheat come in the form of pellets, some of which are puffed for a crunchy texture. Normally, cold cereals made with buckwheat flour also contain other types of flour, like rice flour or quinoa flour, to improve the taste and texture of the cereal. Since buckwheat flour appeals widely to people living with gluten sensitivity, it is usually mixed only with other gluten-free ingredients.

Buckwheat cereal for breakfast can be a health-conscious morning option over traditional cereals for many people, and it is an exceptionally important option for people who must eat gluten-free foods. Often called a superfood, buckwheat has some potentially important nutritional benefits over other types of grains. It contains an additional essential amino acid called lysine that is not in most other grains. Buckwheat is also higher in protein than many other grains. It is one of the most common grains used to maintain a healthy gluten-free diet, a routine part of treating digestive conditions like Celiac disease.

Though buckwheat is frequently called a cereal grain, it is not technically a grain. Some foods widely considered to be grains grow on plants with broad leaves, rather than grasses like the wheat most people are familiar with. When a grain grows on a broadleaf plant rather than a grass, as buckwheat does, it is part of a class of grains called pseudocereals, which are technically dried fruits, not grains. Other common types of pseudocereal fruits often used as grains include amaranth and quinoa.

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Discussion Comments
By candyquilt — On Jun 24, 2012

@ddljohn-- I make buckwheat porridge at home and it's my breakfast (and sometimes even dinner) about four days a week.

I cook whole natural buckwheat with some water, dry cranberries or whatever dry fruit is at home. When the water is gone and the buckwheat is cooked, I eat it with fresh fruits, nuts and with or without milk. I sprinkle some cinnamon on top and drizzle honey if I want it to be more sweet.

It's really delicious! I've made it for my friends a couple of times and have received many compliments. They say it's the best porridge ever.

By ddljohn — On Jun 23, 2012

@alisha-- Buckwheat doesn't have sugar and it's a great food for diabetics. In fact, there are studies which show that it helps prevent diabetes and helps control blood sugar. Buckwheat is a complex carbohydrate and is rich in fiber and nutrients. So it doesn't raise blood sugar quickly and keeps the person full for a long time.

These are the qualities of buckwheat itself. Buckwheat cereals which are processed versions of buckwheat can be very different. Manufacturers may add sugar and other ingredients in them to make them taste good. Processed foods can never be as nutritious as the natural versions.

But you can make your own cereals at home using whole buckwheat or buckwheat groat. That way, it will stay natural and nutritious. I don't know any specific recipes buy maybe someone here can tell you recipes for raw buckwheat cereal.

By bagley79 — On Jun 22, 2012

I have never eaten buckwheat cereal, but it sounds like something I need to try. I was just advised by my chiropractor to go on a gluten free diet to see if it would help with my digestive issues.

When you are trying to avoid gluten, there aren't very many grains you can eat. I used to enjoy bran cereal, but most of that contains some form of gluten.

The only other grain I have been able to eat is quinoa, and that gets a little old after while. I haven't found a grain yet that I didn't like the taste of, so don't think I would have any trouble eating buckwheat cereal.

By golf07 — On Jun 21, 2012

My favorite breakfast is a bowl of hot cereal made with some kind of grain. I prefer this over a breakfast of bacon and eggs any day. I do get tired of eating oatmeal all the time, so began trying different types of whole grain cereal.

I really enjoy the taste of buckwheat. For people who don't really like the taste of whole grains, I can see why they might not care for the taste of buckwheat. It has a different texture and taste than something like oatmeal or barley.

Sometimes I will mix the buckwheat with another type of grain, but I like eating it by itself too. I do have to use some kind of sweetener on it though. My two favorites are honey and pure maple syrup. A touch of maple syrup really compliments the buckwheat cereal.

By discographer — On Jun 21, 2012

I've never tried buckwheat cereal before, I'm not much into healthy cereals. But that's the only kind of cold cereal my roommate in college used to eat. She had Celiac disease, she couldn't digest any gluten. So she had very few options when it came to breakfast cereals. We only had a small supermarket close to campus, so her mom would sometimes bring her boxes of buckwheat cereal when she drove down.

I'm curious, since buckwheat is a dried fruit and not really a grain, does it contain sugar?

Can diabetics have buckwheat cereal too?

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