Sorghum is likely an unknown grain for many of us in Australia, but it is actually an ancient grain – used in Africa for many thousands of years. It is still a staple food for half a billion people in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. In Australia, it’s primarily cultivated as food for livestock, but is quickly reaching superfood status among many of us foodies.
So, let’s take a look at the health benefits of this new-old grain, and introduce you to a few ways you can get cooking with sorghum!
Wholegrain and low GI
Sorghum doesn’t have an inedible hull and is often eaten with all its outer layers – making it a wholegrain! This means it retains the majority of its nutrients and plenty of fibre. Sorghum also has a low glycaemic index (GI), meaning it digests slowly and gives you energy for longer.
Full of fibre
Sorghum is a good source of dietary fibre. Fibre is essential for promoting healthy digestion and bowel health, lowering blood cholesterol, contributing to blood sugar control and keeps us feeling full between meals! What’s not to love?
Vitamins, Minerals, Antioxidants and Phytochemicals
Sorghum is packed with B vitamins, vitamin E, iron, zinc, antioxidants and phytochemicals (biologically active compounds!). Phytochemicals including flavonoids and tannins may help to protect your body from chronic diseases like heart disease, cancer and neurological conditions.
In place of your usual grain of choice
Sorghum can be prepared just like rice, quinoa, cous cous, barley or any other much-loved grain. It subs in particularly well for Israeli cous cous – being a similar shape and texture. Add it to soup, or serve along-side your usual curry or stir-fry. Cook ahead and store in the fridge for easy meal prep!
Just like popped corn – popped sorghum makes a healthy satiating snack or addition to a movie night in. Pop it yourself or purchase it popped! Thr1ve sells a great pre-popped version you can get delivered straight to your door.
Add to Baking
Sorghum has a neutral flavour that makes it perfect for using wherever whole wheat flour is requested. Your baking will be gluten-free (safe for coeliac’s and the gluten-intolerant), but also high in fibre and full of antioxidants. Use for bread, wraps, pizza bases, pancakes, muffins, cookies and cakes.
Whip up a hearty salad
If you’ve ever had a salad with rice, quinoa or cous cous you’ll likely know what a satiating and hearty dish a salad can make. Sorghum can be used in exactly the same way. Try a roast vegetable salad – roast vegetables in harissa and garlic, add to cooked sorghum, add greens and lemon for the perfect work lunch.
Pimp your breakfast
Try a sorghum porridge! This recipe will serve four: Combine 1 cup of sorghum flour with 3 cups of milk or water. Cook for about 10-15 mins. Flavour as desired – we love cinnamon and vanilla, a drizzle of honey, banana and some buckinis for crunch.