Types of millet - Millet Nutrition info - Millet Recipes

Pearl millet - Finger millet - Sorghum

Though there are many types of millet, these are more commonly used; pearl millet, foxtail, finger, proso, sorghum etc. These whole grains are very nutritious and are used in Asian and African countries.

They are grown and used commonly in India since prehistoric times.

In India it is used as cereals, in soups, in breads, in baby food, as breakfast porridge and in other breakfast recipes.

It is also used as bird and cattle feed.

About Millet crops

The seed to harvest time of millet is short, about 65 days.

Store properly and millet grain keeps good for 2-3 years.

Millet crops need less water compared to rice and wheat crops. They are water saving crops.

Traditionally grown millet do not need any chemical/synthetic fertilizers.

They are pest-free crops.

Millet are all-season crops and not season specific like wheat.

Millet Nutrition Info

Millet are better than rice and wheat in protein, vitamins and mineral contents. It is very nutritious and non glutinous.

It is not acid forming, is soothing to the stomach and easy to digest.

It warms the body in the cold climate.

Millet are least allergic. They are very useful for diabetics.

It contains high fiber, protiens, calcium, B complex vitamins and also vitamin E.

It is rich in minerals, lowers cholesterol. It is helpful in reducing the weight.

Millet are very high in minerals like iron, magnesium, phosphorous and potassium. Finger millet (Ragi) is richest in calcium content.

It can be used up to 2 years if stored properly in a cool dry place. Once it is ground to flour, use it within 2-3 weeks.

Types of Millet and Indian names

The different types of these whole grains known in Indian languages.

ragi finger millet nachniFinger millet - Ragi - Nachni

Finger millet

- is known in Indian languages as Sattu / Mandua(Hindi), ragi (Kannada), nachani / nagli (Marathi), Ragulu (Telugu), Malayalam (Koovarugu), Kelvargu (Tamil).


bajra pearl milletPearl millet - Bajra

Pearl millet Is also known as black millet and green millet.

It is known in Indian languages as bajra (Hindi,Gujrati), bajri (Marathi), Sajji / Sajje (Kannada), Kambu(Tamil), Gantilu (Telugu), Kambu (Tamil).

India is the largest producer of pearl millet.

Bajra khichdi - Pearl millet khichuri


foxtail - navne tinaiFoxtail - Navne - Tinai millet

Thinai - Foxtail millet- Navne

In Indian languages known as navane in Kannada, Kang or rala in Marathi, thinai/tenai in Tamil, Korra in Telugu.


sorghum millet jowarSorghum millet jowar

Sorghum - Jowar

Sorghum is also considered a kind of millet.

It is known in Indian languages as jowar (hindi), jwari (marathi), jola (kannada), Cholam (Tamil) , Jonna (Telugu), Cholum (Malayalam).


Barnyard millet - Samo rice
bhagar - varai - samaBarnyard millet - Samo rice bhagar - varai - sama

Barnyard millet - sama rice

Also known as bhagar, varai tandool, samo rice, this millet grain is used for making vrat/upvas recipes.

What types of millets are available and where?

Bajra and Jowar grain as well as flour are used in Maharashtra, Gujarat and north Karnataka region.

Ragi or nachani is used more in the south Indian states of Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. It is also used in Maharashtra. It is used to make flat breads (named Bhakari), dosa, rotti.

Ragi grain is malted too and mixed with milk, water or yogurt and eaten at breakfast time. The sprouted ragi flour is used to make baby food. It is also useful for elderly people as it is easy to digest. It is known as vaddragi hittu and ragi huri hittu in Kannada.

How is millet use?

Millet is mainly used as food.

  • Indian Flat breads - bhakri, thalipeet(marathi) in maharastrian cuisine - rotla in gujarati, ragi rotti - kannada - jolada rotti, ragi mudde.
  • To make porridge - kheer
  • Alcoholic beverages - to make beer in Taiwan , east Africa.
  • Base ingredient for distilled liquor - rakshi in Nepal.
  • To make fermented drink in Balkan countries, Romania, Bulgaria etc.
  • Millet is also used as bird and animal feed.
other uses
  • used to fill juggling bean bags along with bird seed


Go to Millet recipes from Types of millet

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