popped amaranth cereal | puffmaranth

I thought you may need a little reminder about this amazingly fantastic DIY cereal.  I’ve talked about it a dozen times in the past, but it needs to be brought up again.  Mostly because it’s been months since I’ve made a bowl.  So it’s been months since you’ve seen a bowl.  And we’ve both forgotten just how divine it is.

And after that first bowl, I made one the next day and documented it just for you.


So what exactly is amaranth?  A gluten free grain containing a high amount of protein, iron, calcium, lysine, magnesium, fiber, and the list goes on.  It actually holds the highest amount of protein when compared to all other gluten free grains.  It can be cooked in a variety of ways but is most commonly cooked in liquid.  I actually am not a fan of boiled amaranth.  A bit too earthy for me.

For this recipe, instead of cooking amaranth in liquid we’re going to pop it.  Kind of like popcorn.  Nothing too crazy.  You basically heat a pan over med-high, drop 1-2 Tbsp of amaranth in the pan, cover it, shake above the flame, and then POP.  In 10-15 seconds you are done with your first batch.

In the photo below the raw grain is on the left.  It is teeny tiny!  Much smaller than quinoa or millet.


Cereal in minutes that you + your kids can customize any which way you like?  Cereal that is nutrient dense + filling? Cereal that you can eat more than 3/4 cup of?

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Okay, so I know I’m making it sound super simple but it takes a little time to perfect.

I’ve had many people say they’ve gotten it to work and a handful that have said they just can’t seem to get it.

I’ve tested this on a gas + electric range with both coated + aluminum pots.  I’m not sure of the effects of heating a coated pan over med-high but I have gotten it to work.  Below I’ve re-written the instructions and also given a set of tips.  It definitely takes a few burnt batches until you get the hang of it.  But it’s definitely worth it.

As soon as you learn the right heat setting for your range you’re good to go!


And then you’re left with a light, fluffy, slightly crunchy blank canvas in a bowl.

Just waiting to be covered in fresh summer berries.



…loving on the morning light…


Print this!

How to: Popped Amaranth [yields ~2 cups – my typical serving size]

[nutrition data info]

  • 6 Tbsp raw amaranth
  1. Heat a small/medium pot over med-high/high heat.
  2. Test if the pot is hot enough by adding a drop of water.  If it instantly balls up, dances around in the pot, and evaporates you’re good to go.
  3. Once hot, add in 1-2T raw amaranth, then cover with a lid and quickly shimmy/slide the pot back and forth just above the burner.  If your heat is set correctly it should start popping within 1-3 seconds and finish within 10-15 seconds.  It burns very quickly!
  4. Just as the amaranth pops are slowing empty it into a bowl.
  5. Replace the pan back on the burner to heat back up for 15-30 seconds.
  6. Repeat the popping process until desired amount has been reached.
  7. Let cool in the bowl.
  8. Add toppings, milk, cereal sauce, nut butter, nuts, yogurt, etc.


  • Wear oven mitts!  The heat gets intense when you’re making multiple batches. 
  • I recommend 1-2 Tbsp of raw amaranth in the pot.  You want a thin layer across the bottom.
  • It’s crucial that your pot is fully heated.
  • If you don’t cover the pot amaranth will pop everywhere.
  • If the amaranth doesn’t start popping within 3 seconds your pan is not hot enough.
  • Dump the amaranth into the bowl just as the popping is slowing down.  If you wait until it’s completely stopped it will burn.
  • If the amaranth instantly burns your heat is too hot.
  • If you’re using an electric burner you may have to slide the pot back and forth on the burner and not above it.
  • If you let the popped grain fully cool you can store it in a sealed container in the fridge for at least a few weeks.

And let’s not forget to drench it in cereal sauce.  It’s like a milkier smoothie that you can customize any which way you like.  Check that link for ideas.


I usually end up using about 1.5 – 2 cups of milk or cereal sauce for each 2 cup bowl.  Play around to find what you like best. 


The flavor is light + nutty, with a slight bit of earthiness.  I usually drizzle honey overtop and add nut butter but somehow I’m out of both!?? 

Don’t let the lightness of this popped grain deceive you.  It’s one of the most filling breakfasts I’ve ever eaten.

You can also incorporate popped amaranth into granola bars,  peanut butter cups, cookies, or even use it as an ice cream topping [which I tried last night!].


A definite favorite that is going to be on repeat for the rest of the summer.