Rolled Barley And Oat Porridge with Apple 
Plus Several Variations

Rolled Barley And Oat Porridge with Apple, or topped with my Apple Goji Berry Sauce is an excellent, satisfying and hearty way to begin your day.  Complex carbohydrates like barley and oats which contain both soluble and insoluble fiber provide slow-burning energy which keeps blood sugar and energy balanced and even throughout your morning.  And balanced blood sugar = balanced moods!  

Whole grains are excellent for fueling your brain as well.  They are the principal food in macrobiotic diets.

I love the extra chewiness of barley, which, according to Chinese medicine is a great grain for helping remove excess dampness (especially Hatomugi which we love adding to brown rice.)  Generally speaking, it would be especially beneficial during the damp seasons of spring and summer.

You can certainly use a variety of rolled grain flakes in addition to or instead of either the barley or oats, such as rolled rye flakes, kamut flakes, whole wheat flakes, spelt flakes, rice flakes or triticale flakes.  Most of these used to be easy to find (and a LOT less expensive) at natural foods stores.  These days, I order rolled barley flakes, white whole wheat flakes, Kamut flakes, and spelt flakes online.

You'll find more easy Baked and Stewed Fresh & Dried Fruit Recipes, here, as shown in the photo below.

Breakfast Porridge made with Barley and Oats, Topped with Baked Apples, Dates & Raisins Barley Oat Porridge Topped with Baked Fruit

Rolled Barley and Oat Porridge Basic Recipe 

This Rolled Barley and Oat Recipe ~ or one of the variations ~ is what Don and I eat for breakfast most mornings.  

Some days we have Oat and Millet Porridge, Millet and Squash Porridge, or Brown Rice Porridge using leftover brown rice.  I also have some type of vegetables, or Miso Vegetable Soup along with our Porridge.  

This basic recipe will feed two adults with a healthy appetite, three for lighter eaters.

Barley Oats with Apple Raisin Goji Berry SaucePorridge with Barley & Rye Flakes topped with Baked Fruit
Breakfast Porridge with Beans and GreensRolled Barley and Oat Porridge with Collards, and QB Carrot & Daikon Radish, Topped with Aduki Beans
Macrobiotic Breakfast of Oatmeal & Barley with Steamed VegetablesRolled Barley & Oats with Collards & Red Cabbage, Topped with Hemp & Pumpkin Seeds

Rolled Barley and Oat Porridge Recipe Ingredients + Steps

  • 3/4 cup rolled barley flakes
  • 3/4 cup rolled oats (not instant) ~ or use 1 cup of oats, and 1/2 cup of barley
  • 3&1/2 - 4 cups water + 1 cup soy milk, or nondairy (ND) milk of choice (more liquid + softer, creamier texture)
  • 1/2-1 apple, peeled and grated or finely chopped, optional
  • Pinch unrefined sea salt (optional)

Possible Toppings:

  • In lieu of adding an apple while cooking the Barley Oat Porridge, top with  Apple Raisin Goji Berry Sauce
  •  Fresh berries
  • 1 tablespoon of hemp seeds &/or dry roasted or ground pumpkin seeds, or a few chopped walnuts
  • Sliced scallions
  • If you like it sweeter, a drizzle of brown rice syrup, maple syrup, or your favorite or a little organic brown sugar
  • If you like it more savory, top with naturally fermented (brined) cabbage or other veggies, or natto ~ a super nutritious condiment made with soybeans rich in vitamin K2, important for bone and heart health

Measure barley and oats into a pot, and add water and soy or other nondairy milk.  Add pinch of salt.   Cover with lid a little ajar while it comes to a boil , then reduce heat to low, cover, and let simmer about 20-30 minutes.  

Remove from heat, but leave lid on for a few minutes.  This will help loosen up any grain stuck to the bottom.  Then give a quick stir and serve.  Top as desired.


  • Use all water instead of water + ND milk
  • Sub the ND milk for apple juice or apple cider 
  • Use less water / liquid if you prefer a less creamy Rolled Barley and Oat Porridge; Using some ND milk, and letting it cook on low for 30 minutes creates a nice creamy porridge.
  • A flame tamer can be placed under the pot once you turn it low to prevent sticking.
  • For a very satisfying breakfast that can help with weight loss and weight management, supplement your morning porridge with greens (like my QB Greens or Vegetables), or a quick Miso Vegetable Soup.  

See more recipes in my FREE E-Book, How To Feel Great & Improve Your Health with a Macrobiotic Diet.

Rolled Barley and Oat Porridge Variations

  • Add any chopped nuts or seeds to the porridge while cooking, or serve on top.   Some days, we add 1-2 teaspoons of ground flax seeds to cook with the barley and oats.  It's a lot less dry tasting then when added on top.  
  • Add 1+ tablespoon of chopped peanuts for a little crunch.
  • Add 1 apple, peeled and grated or chopped (I like adding peanuts and apple together!)
  • If you like it a little richer, add 1 teaspoon of high lignan flax oil (like Flora Brand which is one of the better tasting flax oils we have tried) per serving once cooked.  Don't heat the oil!
  • Another option is to add 1 teaspoon of Fearn's liquid lecithin, or 1 tablespoon of Fearn's Soy Lecithin Granules (website says is pure, and non GMO), or sunflower lecithin.  Lecithin is a great source of phosphatidylcholine, which supports brain and skin health, and can help reduce LDL cholesterol, while raising HDL to help reduce risk for cardiovascular disease.  I use Fearn's, and let it cook with the barley and oats.  
  • For a little more protein, add 1/2-1 tablespoon per serving of Fearn's defatted soy granules, or 1/4 cup already cooked aduki or small black beans.
  • Add cinnamon with the apple, and/or add a handful of raisins, with or without the apple. 
  • Add a tablespoon or so of goji berries right to the porridge.
  • Try a porridge blend with any combo of the following: rolled oats, barley, white whole wheat flakes, triticale, kamut, spelt, and/or rye flakes.  The rye flakes add a chewiness, similar to barley.  Whole wheat flakes, usually a soft, white whole wheat, and/or kamut or spelt add a bit of sweetness.  
  • Top with any Stewed or Baked Fruit or Apple Goji Berry Sauce.

Resources for Ordering Rolled Grain Flakes

A few sources for ordering several of the rolled flake cereal grains includes,, or Amazon.  There are several companies that make good quality grain flakes, including Eden Foods, Bob's Red Mill, and Shiloh Farms, and others.  

I really like Bob's Red Mill Steel Cut Oats, and Protein Oats, which are thicker and chewier and a bit creamier.  Just 1/3 cup of BRM Protein Oats contains 9g of protein and 5g of fiber. has good prices for small quantities.  They do not offer much in bulk. has larger bulk options.  They have been one of the few places I have found the soft, white whole wheat flakes, which I really like.  

Local Grocers: Organic rolled oats and steel cut oats can still be purchased at a good price in bulk at stores like Fresh Thyme, Sprouts, and local coops.  Whole Foods stores may have bulk oats still, but the 'bulk' of the bulk items they used to carry are no longer available at the WF stores I've been to. 

Aldi's and Trader Joe's also sell rolled oats at decent prices.

Breakfast Porridge with hemp seedsHigh Protein Oats & Barley Porridge topped with Hemp Seeds
Barley Rice PorridgeBarley & Rice Porridge

If you love oats ~ or breakfast porridge ~ you may also like these:

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