How to make Porridge

People from outside Scotland often want to know how to make porridge the Scottish way. The recipe below is easy to make and tastes delicious.

Its great nutritional value is one of the things that makes porridge so popular. It is high in fibre and believed to lower cholestoral, and is an excellent way to start the day, keeping you feeling 'full' for longer. Porridge is enjoyed not just in Scotland but throughout the world.

Of course although porridge is 'healthy' - if you are in Hotel or Guest House here you will also be offered a 'Full Scottish Breakfast' which will comprise of bacon, eggs, Lorne or sliced sausage, black pudding, potato (tattie) scones, baked beans and/or tomato, followed by toast and marmalade. Laden with calories, but it WILL set you up for a day of sight-seeing.

The key in how to make porridge the traditional Scottish way is to use quality oats. There are many brands on the market, but my own favourite is Quaker, because they have a factory in Fife, just outside Cupar. But if you can't get Quaker, then try Scots or even a Supermarket's own brand.

There are a variety of well-tried methods on how to make porridge. But the one below is simple and easy to do. Of course, the old-fashioned way was to cook it slowly overnight in an aga (and served in wooden bowls), but these days you can get easy-cook porridge and even microwaveable porridge. It is served with a variety of extras according to the individual taste, from extra salt to the sweet tastes of honey or brown sugar, cream, fruit or even a wee tot of whisky! I think pinhead oats are best to use but medium oats cook quicker. I hope you enjoy this simple recipe of how to make porridge.

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Bowl of porridge with fruit

How to make porridge - picture of cooked porridge

How to Make Porridge


4 oz /115 g pinhead oats
1¾ pts / 1 litre water
generous pinch of salt


1)   Put all ingredients in a large heavy pan
2)   Bring to the boil over a medium heat, stirring continually with a spurtle or wooden spoon.
3)   When the porridge starts to thicken, turn down the heat to a simmer.
4)   Continue letting the porridge simmer and cook until the oats are cooked through and the porridge is smooth.
5)  Stir occasionally with the spurtle to stop it sticking to the pan.

If you've enjoyed this page on how to make porridge, have a look at some of the other recipes:

Easter Sunday Menu - Have a look at the recipes I've chosen for Easter Sunday - Cream of Carrot & Coriander Soup, Roast Lamb, followed by profiteroles.
Mothers' Day Menu - A simple meal of cottage pie, followed by rhubarb crumble.
Valentine's Meal - Try the recipes I've chosen for Valentine's Day - starting with Smoked Salmon Mousse followed by Steak in a Whisky and Pepper Sauce, and finishing with a delicious Chocolate Cream.
Burns Supper - Look at how this is celebrated and try out the traditional menu of haggis, neeps and tatties.
Tipsy Laird - This delicious whisky trifle (similar to sherry trifle) is traditionally served at a Burns Supper.
Black Bun - This is traditionally served at Hogmanay when bringing in the New Year.
Clootie Dumpling - This rich and traditional dish is a favourite all year round but especially at Christmas time.
Christmas Pudding - This traditional pudding is usually served on Christmas day throughout the UK as well as Scotland.
Christmas Cake - Do try this traditional Christmas cake recipe - another authentic Scottish food recipe!.
Black Bun - This is traditionally served at Hogmanay when bringing in the New Year.
Cullen Skink - This famous fish soup is made with smoked haddock.

Trout in oatmeal - This traditional and famous dish made with local ingredients.
Roast Turkey Recipe - This simple recipe will be ideal for Christmas or Thanksgiving
Roast Venison - Make Christmas, Thanksgiving or other celebration special by serving roast venison to your guests.
Best Scone Recipes - Try the plain, fruit or the cheese scones.
Famous Shortbread Recipes - Have a look at some variations of shortbread recipes.
Haggis - Try this world-famous dish.
Pretend Haggis - If you can't face the 'real' thing, try this easy-to-make pretend haggis recipe.
Forfar Bridie - Try this filling meat 'pastie'.
Raspberry Recipes - See what you can do with a punnet of delicious raspberries, including the famous dessert, Crannachan.
Scotch Broth - See the recipe for hearty Scotch Broth.
Scotch Eggs - A simple recipe for you to try. Can be served hot or cold.
Scotch Pancakes - A quick, inexpensive treat for your guests.
Potato Scones - Serve Potato (or tattie) scone as part of the traditional Scottish Breakfast.
Tablet - Indulge in this delicious, but sweet Scottish confectionery.
Scottish Leek Soup Recipes - Try these two famous Scottish Leek Soup Recipes.
Scottish Lorne Sausages - Try this everyday dish for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
Scotch Pies - This Traditional pie is made with mutton or lamb.
Savoury Mince Pies - This pie is made with minced beef (or hamburger meat).
Salmon Patties - A variation of Fish Cakes using oats.
Traditional Fish and Chips in Batter. - If you're visiting Scotland - do try this from a good Fish and Chip Shop. But if you want to make it yourself, here's the recipe. Serve with 'mushy' peas.
Stovies - Try this simple, everyday dish, can be made with lamb, corned beef or even sausages.

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