Pearl Millet Recipes With Its Nutrition Facts and Benefits

Pearl Millet Recipes With Its Nutrition Facts and Benefits

India and Africa are the primary regions in the world to grow Pearl Millet. However, Pearl Millet is also grown and consumed in many regions across the world due to its nutritional importance. Bajra is the traditional name for Pearl Millet in Hindi. The pearl millet seeds are primarily grown as a cereal grain. However, pearl millet or kambu is also ground to a fine powder and used as a flour for various purposes. These Pearl Millet recipes are healthy yet easy to make. 

Magnesium is one such component that keeps your heart healthy. Bajra is rich in Magnesium. Pearl Millet or Kambu is also known for its other nutritional compounds such as potassium which is capable of dilating the blood vessels, fibre that helps in reduction of LDL or Bad Cholesterol.

Pearl Millet Nutrition Facts

Bajra or Pearl Millet Nutritional Value per 100 grams are as follows:

  • Energy: 361 Kcal
  • Carbohydrates: 67gms  
  • Protein: 12gms
  • Fat: 5gms 
  • Minerals 2gm
  • Fibre: 1gm
  • Calcium 42gms
  • Phosphorus: 296 gms
  • Iron: 8mg

Nutrition and Benefits of Kambu

  1. Low caloric density: Bajra is a whole grain with low caloric density. If you are looking forward to losing weight and shifting your lifestyle to a healthier one Bajra or Pearl Millet is a great option.
  2. Low Glycemic Index: Pearl Millet or Bajra has a lower Glycemic Index when compared to other refined grains like white rice or wheat.
  3. Gluten Free: Gluten causes gastrointestinal problems like bloating and irritable bowel processes. Bajra is gluten-free by nature. Pearl millet or Kambu can substitute other grains like rice and wheat.
  4. Rich in Protein: Bajra or Kambu is a rich source of protein for vegetarians. It contains approximately 14 percent of protein.
  5. Better Hair and Skin Health: Kambu Millet also contains important nutrients like protein, vitamin B6, niacin, folate, iron, zinc which are essential for enhancing the health of skin, hair, and nails.
  6. Good for Babies: Bajra flour made into a porridge with water or milk is very healthy for babies under 6 months old.

Pearl Millet Recipes

Here are a few easy and healthy Pearl Millet Recipes.

1. Pearl Millet Idli | Bajra Idli Without Rice

In regular idlis, rice and urad dal are the main ingredients. However, this recipe is healthier since rice is substituted with Pearl Millet. Here is the recipe for Bajra Idli without rice.

pearl millet recipes - idli


  • Pearl Millet – 2 cup
  • Whole urad dal – ½ cup
  • Fenugreek seeds – ½ tsp
  • Salt


  1. Wash and soak the pearl millet and urad dal with fenugreek seeds separately for 4 hours. 
  2. Grind as a bit of coarse paste, add enough salt, and keep overnight for fermentation.
  3. Next day, stir and pour enough fermented idli batter into the greased idli plates and steam cook them in an idli cooker for 10-15 minutes. 
  4. Serve this spongy idli with spicy chutneys.

For instant Kambu Idli or Pearl Millet Idli, replace urad dal with sooji or Bombay rava. Do not grind rava along with soaked pearl millet. However, using urad dal is the healthier option.

2. Bajra Dosa |  Kambu Dosai | Millet Dosa

kambu dosai - pearl millet dosa


  • Pearl millet – 2 cup
  • Urad dal and green gram split – 1/4 cup each
  • Onion – 2 no
  • Green chilli – 2 no
  • Ginger – small piece
  • Fennel seeds – 2 tsp
  • Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Curry leaves – few
  • Coriander leaves – few
  • Salt to taste 
  • Sesame Cold-Pressed Oil

Batter Preparation:

  1. Soak pearl millet and urad dal with green gram split in separate containers for 6 hours. 
  2. Chop green chilli, ginger. 
  3. In a mixi jar add green chilli, ginger, half of the fennel seeds, and salt, and grind for a few seconds. 
  4. Add washed pearl millet, grind to rava consistency, and remove. 


  1. Grind urad dal and green gram and add them with the pearl millet batter then add chopped onion, curry leaves, remaining one teaspoon of fennel seed, and turmeric powder with pearl millet batter.
  2. Mix well, add some water, and make a batter. 
  3. Heat a pan, pour one ladle of batter, spread, and sprinkle some oil.
  4. When cooked, turn and cook the other side also till crisp.
  5. Repeat for the remaining batter also. Serve hot with chutney.

3. Pearl Millet Moong Dal Porridge | Bajra And Moong Dal Kichidi

Bajra and moong dal kichidi


  • Pearl Millet – 1 cup 
  • Traditional Red Rice – 1/4 cup
  • Moong Dal – 1/4 cup
  • Peas and Carrots – mixed 1/2 cup
  • Jeera (Cumin Seeds)1 tsp
  • Cloves – 4 to 5
  • Black Cardamom – 2
  • Cinnamon Stick – 1 inch piece 
  • Turmeric Powder – 1 tsp
  • Green Chilies – 4 small ones 
  • Ginger – 1 inch piece
  • Ghee – 2 tbsp
  • Cold-pressed sesame oil – 1 tbsp 
  • Salt

Pearl Millet Rava or Bajra Rava Preparation

Soak Pearl Millet in water for an hour and then spread it on a cloth and let it air dry for another hour or so. Then coarsely grind it and remove all the dust and hull from Pearl Millet.


  1. Take a cooker and add sesame oil to it. 
  2. Once it is hot, add cumin seeds and let cumin splutter. 
  3. Add cloves, cardamom, and cinnamon, and after 15 seconds, add green chilies and ginger till it is fried. 
  4. Then add peas and carrots and let them fry for 2 min. 
  5. Add Pearl Millet Rava, red rice, moong dal, salt, and water, and close the lid. Cook it till 4 to 5 whistles (if not cooker, cook for about 20-25 min). 
  6. Please switch off the heat mix it well and serve once the steam is released.
  7. Serve with ghee on top.

4. Pearl Millet Chutney 

Unlike regular chutneys which are made with vegetables or nuts, this recipe is made with a whole grain, which is Bajra in this case. Let’s get into the recipe of Pearl Millet Chutney or Kambu Chutney.


  • Pearl Millet – 1/4 cup 
  • Urad dhal – 4 tbsp
  • Small onion – 8nos 
  • Green chillies – 2 nos
  • Salt
  • Cold-pressed sesame oil – 1 tbsp
  • Mustard seeds – 1/4 tsp
  • Jeera/Cumin Seed – 1/4 tsp
  • Split black gram – 1/4 tsp
  • Curry leaves – 4 or 5 nos


  1. Dry roast Pearl Millet, urad dhal till it’s slightly golden brown and keep aside. Let it cool. 
  2. Heat 1 tsp of oil in the same pan, saute small onions for a few seconds and followed by green chillies, saute for two minutes. 
  3. Remove from the stove and let it cool. 
  4. Now grind the fried mixture with Salt. 
  5. Heat oil in a pan, and season with items given for seasoning. 
  6. Pour this seasoning over the chutney. 
  7. The tasty Pearl Millet chutney is ready and served hot with hot pearl millet idli or kambu dosai.

5. Pearl Millet Upma

Upma, which is one of the most favorite dishes for South Indians, is usually made with Sooji or Bombay Rava. In this recipe, we are making a healthy version of Upma by replacing sooji with Bajra or Pearl Millet i.e; Pearl Millet Upma. 

pearl millet upma


  • Pearl Millet – 1 cup(Pressure cook for 5 whistles with 3 cups water and salt)
  • Green Chillies – 3 nos
  • Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
  • Urad dhal – 1 tsp
  • Chana Dal – 1 tsp
  • Curry leaves
  • Coriander leaves
  • Ginger 1/2 tsp
  • Cold-Pressed groundnut Oil – 2 tsp
  • Salt to taste 


  1. Heat oil in a pan add mustard seeds when it starts to sputter add urad dhal, chana dal roast them.
  2. Now add green chillies, ginger and curry leaves, salt and asafetida saute well.
  3. Add cooked Pearl Millet (drain excess water if any) kernels mix them well and add coriander leaves.
  4. Serve it hot.

6. Pearl Millet Curd Rice | Kambu Curd Rice

People usually avoid having curd during winters. But consuming curd on a daily basis is a must for a few body types. Since Bajra or Pearl Millet has body-warming properties, this Kambu curd rice recipe is perfect for winters.

pearl millet curd rice | kambu curd rice


  • Pearl Millet-1 cup
  • Desi Cow Milk – 1 cup
  • Curd – 1 cup
  • Sea Salt, Oil – 1 tsp
  • Mustard Seeds – 1/2 tsp
  • Green Chillies – 1 no
  • Curry leaves
  • Coriander leaves
  • Cashew Nuts

How To Cook Pearl Millet Rice 

Wash and soak Pearl Millet for 1/2 hour, then drain the water from it, then put it in a mixie jar and run the mixer once or twice in whipper mode, now the grain is partially mashed mildly.


  1. Firstly, heat a pressure cooker add 1 cup of grinded Pearl Millet and two cups of water and little salt to it and pressure cook it as rice for 20 mins in very low flame. 
  2. Now Pearl Millet rice is ready. When done mash the Pearl Millet nicely with the back of the spoon. 
  3. When it is slightly warm add milk to this. Add cold milk. 
  4. Mash it nicely and mix it up nicely with the Pearl Millet rice. 
  5. When it is completely cool add the yogurt to this and mix it up smoothly without any lumps. Add salt to this. 
  6. Heat a pan, add oil and add mustard seeds and add the chopped green chilli, curry leaves and lastly the coriander leaves. 
  7. Ensure that the coriander leaves and curry leaves are chopped finely. 
  8. Chop the green chilli into big pieces, some grated ginger can also be added. Add this to the Pearl Millet curd rice. If adding cashew nuts, chop them finely and add it raw. Do not fry them in oil.

If you do not want to add milk to this, add 2 cups of curd instead of 1 cup of milk and 1 cup of curd.

Make sure you try these healthy pearl millet recipes to enhance your heart health, skin and hair health.

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