Like Goldilocks, porridge has to be just right but that is different in each country. Here are how 10 different countries have their porridge.

Porridge, oats, or oatmeal- whatever you call it, there is no denying that it is versatile, healthy, and filling. Us brits have been known to label the dish as gruel, which is less than kind to the meal that fed our earlier generations. Porridge is having a comeback- and its and international one. Different cultures appear to eat their porridge in different ways, such as how they traditionally choose to top this warming meal, which grain is used as the base and whether it is served as a sweet or savoury dish.

The health benefits of porridge are plentiful. It has been found to reduce the risk of colon cancer by preventing constipation and reduces blood sugar levels as well as cholesterol. It has also been found to improve gut health by increasing the growth of good bacteria and has been shown to increase satiety (how satisfied and full you feel), which can help with weight management. This gloopy bowl of goodness is clearly a well-rounded meal for many.

It goes without saying that preference how to serve porridge will vary from person to person within every country and culture. The variations listed below are simply interesting toppings that seem popular in each country based off research. Go ahead and give them a try!

Here is how 10 different countries have their porridge:


In Russia, buckwheat is used to make a porridge- a dish they call Kasha. It is traditionally topped with berries and honey. It is said to have represented an essential Russian meal for centuries. Most popularly, Kasha is a crumbly texture and seasoned with butter and it can be eaten at any time of the day and is sometimes even used as a side dish for an evening meal.


Congee is a type of porridge that is rice based. It can be eaten plain and served as a side dish but is often served with an array of savoury toppings. Normally, salt and ginger flavours the congee and it is topped with eggs, bamboo shoots and a form of meat of tofu. Soy sauce is often added after the congee is cooked. It is most served as a breakfast food and renowned for being a meal to eat for breakfast when you are ill. The dish is cooked with a large amount of water to give it a very soft, wet texture.


A thick legume and grain porridge mix usually made using maize is often consumed in Ethiopia for breakfast alongside a big spoonful of kibe- a spiced butter, or yoghurt. Frequently given to women who are pregnant or have recently given birth due to its high nutrient density.


Sticking with the Scandi counties, a Finish version of porridge consists of oats and a slightly saltier topping than is commonly recognised. Smoked salmon and pickled gherkins are often used to make a savoury porridge.


Porridge often takes the form of a thick drink here, named champurrado. Dating back to the Aztecs, this meal made from corn masa harina (lime treated corn dough), water and cacao beans has a chocolatey flavour. It is often spiced with cinnamon and vanilla to sweeten it.


All American porridge is just how you would imagine- full of all things sweet and delicious. Usually referred to as ‘oatmeal’, it is often topped with sugary toppings of all kinds. Chocolate sauce and marshmallows and peanut butter and jam (or jelly as they would say) are very popular combinations. Americans also have a dish called ‘grits’ which is made from boiled cornmeal which has a smooth, rich texture. They are frequently eaten in accompaniment with bacon and eggs in the morning.


I will give you a second to guess what Canadians love on their warm bowl of oats. Correct. It’s the classic Canadian maple syrup. Many enjoy this with a generous spoonful of lingonberry jam, which has a sour, sharp taste to cut through the silky, sweet syrup.


In Israel, a savoury option is seemingly preferred. Fresh and traditional flavours of mint and rocket is paired with a salty parmesan. Similarly to many South-East Asian countries, Israel also is partial to topping their porridge with a fried egg.


Australians love their breakfast cuisine, and porridge is not a dish that escape the mouths of those down under. Commonly, it is served warm and hearty with a variety of colourful fresh fruits, or perhaps even frozen berries. The abundance of tropical produce lends itself well to this healthy start to the day.


In Southern India, a dish named Upma, which is a thick porridge made from dry roasted semolina is served savoury. Oil-fried spices, chillies and a variety of vegetables flavour the boiled porridge. It is often topped with a spice blend, nuts or sprouted beans.