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Caribbean Porridges

Hearty & Nutritious Breakfast


With breakfast being the most important meal of the day, porridges have long been an integral part of Caribbean cuisine. Porridge is meant to fortify and strengthen for long periods of time. A porridge is a hearty mixture of grains cooked with water and sometimes milk, flavored with spices and sweetened with cane sugar (for which the region is well known) and milk.

These days, porridge is not made as regularly in Caribbean households as they should be; today our breakfast consists of more traditional items such as toasts, coffee, tea, bacon, eggs, cheese etc.

Here are 5 popular porridges made in the Caribbean.

1. Barley Porridge

Barley Porridge
Photo By Cynthia Nelson

Barley Porridge is traditionally made with the whole kernel but these days, one can get ground barley to make porridge. The cooking time for ground barley porridge is considerably less than when cooking with the whole grain.

2. Cornmeal Porridge

Cornmeal Porridge
Photo By Cynthia Nelson

Cornmeal Porridge is also known in the Caribbean as Cornmeal Pap in places such as Barbados and Jamaica. It is called pap simply because it is so thick that it's like baby's food. While cinnamon is the preferred spice of choice for this porridge, some people also use Bay Leaf. However, I personally do not like the flavor of Bay Leaf with this porridge.

3. Cream of Wheat Porridge

Cream of Wheat Porridge
Photo By Cynthia Nelson

Cream of Wheat Porridge is an all-time favorite. For me, the best thing about Cream of Wheat Porridge is the fruit compote or fruit preserve that's served with it. Swirled into the porridge, it is elevated to almost a dessert.

4. Oats Porridge

Oats Porridge with Raisins
Photo By Cynthia Nelson

To date, Oats Porridge remains the favorite and most often made porridge in the Caribbean. Cooked thick and creamy with plump raisins and sweet cinnamon, Oats porridge becomes a dessert too.

5. Sago Porridge

Sago Porridge
Photo By Cynthia Nelson

Sago is also known as Tapioca. The little white balls are first soaked in water and then cooked until they become translucent. Cinnamon is the spice flavoring of choice but cardamom works great too, in this Sago Porridge.

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