Buckwheat Kasha (Гречана Каша) Recipe

Lastest Updated April 19, 2024
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Savor the simple pleasure of Ukrainian Buckwheat Kasha, a timeless recipe I’m excited to share today. This nutrition-packed dish, teeming with magnesium, iron, calcium, and an array of vitamins, is as wholesome as it is delicious.

As you delve into this short guide, you’ll learn to create a heartwarming meal featuring buckwheat, beautifully accentuated by bacon-fried onions. This is more than just a recipe—it’s your key to unlocking a healthier, tastier dining experience, making every bite worth your while.

Buckwheat Kasha1

Buckwheat Kasha, The Quintessential Ukrainian Delight

Buckwheat Kasha is a cherished porridge made from the humble buckwheat grain, widely embraced in the culinary traditions of Ukraine, Belarus, Lithuania, Poland, Russia, and several other European countries.

Historically, buckwheat, believed to have been cultivated over 5,000 years ago in South China, has traveled far and wide across the globe. Intriguingly, Eastern culinary practices involving this grain often exhibit stark differences from their European counterparts, despite sharing certain common elements.

This versatile grain, offering endless cooking possibilities, is commonly boiled, fried, incorporated into soups, or ground into flour for baking. As adaptable as it is, buckwheat can grace your table as a savory dish, or with the addition of sugar, honey, and milk, it can morph into a delightful dessert. Notably, it’s also used in the creation of certain alcoholic beverages.

Today I will tell and show you how to cook delicious buckwheat, which can then be used both as a side dish for meat and vegetables and even as itself – buckwheat porridge. I will prepare one of the classic simple “not sweet” recipes.


Buckwheat Kasha Tools
  • Metal or glass pot: A sturdy vessel for cooking the grains. I boil and simmer buckwheat in this pot until tender.
  • Skillet with non-stick coating: l use this skillet to brown the onion and lard to perfection, creating a flavorful porridge topping.
  • Spatula: This tool is for stirring and flipping. It will help fry the onion and lard evenly in the skillet.
  • Kitchen knife: An essential cutting tool. I use this knife to dice the onion and lard for the porridge topping.
  • Kitchen board: For dicing onion and lard. Its use ensures a clean and safe preparation process.

Ingredients to Use

Buckwheat Kasha Ingredients
  • Buckwheat: My choice is the simple, toasted variety, though some might prefer the raw, or “green” buckwheat. Go with what you love.
  • A piece of lard: I like mine with layers of meat, but you could opt for either salted or raw lard. Using smoked lard introduces a delightful, fire-kissed essence to the dish.
  • Onion: A single, crisp, medium-sized onion is all you need.
  • Ground black pepper: I’m a purist, sticking to ground black pepper. Some folks spice things up with assorted seasonings or blends, but the classic recipe calls for the good old black pepper.
  • Salt: Select your favorite type of salt – it’s your call.
  • Water: Just ensure it’s clean and suitable for cooking.
  • Oil: My kitchen sees a lot of sunflower and olive oil, but you’re welcome to use any oil that suits your palate.
  • Greens for garnish: While my personal favorites are parsley and green onions, feel free to mix in dill, lettuce, or any fresh seasonal herbs for that verdant garnish.

How To Cook Buckwheat Kasha

Step 1: Prep The Cereal

Measure the necessary quantity of cereal and transfer it into a pan. Rinse it thoroughly under running water multiple times. Then place the pan on the heat source. Upon reaching boiling point, lower the heat, sprinkle in some salt, and allow the cereal to cook for about 15-20 minutes.

Buckwheat Kasha Step 1 Prep the Cereal

Step 2: Sauté The Onion And Lard

While the cereal is simmering, chop the onion and lard into small pieces.

Buckwheat Kasha Saute the Onion and Lard

Heat a little oil in a different pan and toss in the onion and lard mixture. Fry until it achieves a golden-brown hue, and season with black pepper.

Buckwheat Kasha Saute the Onion and Lard1

Step 3: Combine And Serve

When the cereal porridge is fully cooked, mix in the sautéed onion and lard. You can choose to do this directly on the serving plate; serve the porridge, then garnish with the fried onion, lard, and some fresh greens.

Buckwheat Kasha Step 3 Combine and Serve
Buckwheat Kasha Step 3 Combine and Serve1

Culinary Wisdom: Guidelines For Better Cooking

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  • Buckwheat Varieties: Buckwheat comes in three different types – green, light, and dark. Green buckwheat is full of health benefits as it remains untouched by heat treatment, preserving all its natural nutrients.

The light variety is steamed buckwheat groats. As for the dark one, it’s pre-roasted. Some folks think it loses a lot of its good stuff during this process, but I can tell you – it’s packed with flavor and has a lovely aroma that’s hard to resist.

  • Porridge Texture: When it comes to cooking porridge, its texture can be varied to suit your taste. Fancy a crumbly texture? Simply shave a few minutes off the cooking time. If you’re more of a fan of a gooey, sticky consistency, just let it cook a bit longer or turn up the heat slightly.
  • Pre-Cooking Advice: Before you start cooking, don’t forget to soak the grains in water for a few minutes. It helps them soak up moisture and cook better.
  • After-Cooking Tips: Here’s a little trick I use after cooking – cover the pot with a lid and wrap it snugly in a kitchen towel, letting it sit for a while. Trust me, it does wonders for the flavor.
  • Adding Flavors: Flavoring is a personal thing, so feel free to use your favorite spices to jazz up the dish. Add a pinch of this and a dash of that until it tastes just right.
  • Adding Fats: Once the buckwheat is cooked, some people like to add a pat of butter. It certainly gives a creamy twist, but it also ups the fat content. As for me, I find the bacon I use adds enough fat to the dish.
  • Components of the Dish: The dish mainly consists of two parts – the boiled grain and the sautéed topping. There’s a wide variety of options for the topping, including minced meat, whole meat, mushrooms, vegetables, and more. Feel free to add your favorite ingredients to the mix.

Complementing Your Buckwheat Kasha

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  • How to Serve Buckwheat Porridge: This buckwheat dish, prepared with love, is a tasty standalone meal. I personally enjoy pairing it with homemade salted lard, hard-boiled eggs, and a sprinkling of fresh herbs.
  • Additional Accompaniments: In the true Ukrainian spirit, you could add meat gravy, meatballs, or even fried or boiled chicken. A variety of salads also make a great companion for this hearty meal.
  • Seasonal Touch: Incorporate seasonal vegetables like cucumbers, tomatoes, and bell peppers for a fresh burst of flavor. Sure, you can buy them year-round, but when they’re in season, the taste is unmatched.
  • Bread Pairing: The choice of bread is entirely up to you – white or whole grain, with or without yeast.
  • Ideal for Any Meal: This buckwheat porridge can be a comforting dinner or a satisfying lunch in between your daily tasks. It’s a flexible dish that fits any time of the day!
  • Drinks to Pair: Many of us here enjoy pairing this meal with traditional Ukrainian beverages, creating a perfect harmony of flavors.

How To Store And Reheat?

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Storing Buckwheat

Drawing from my experience cooking various Ukrainian dishes, I’ve found that buckwheat, a crucial ingredient, keeps best when stored in the fridge or freezer. Regardless of where you choose to keep it, always ensure it’s in a sealed container. This way, you prevent any moisture or tiny critters from spoiling your buckwheat.

Reheating Buckwheat

When it comes to reheating your cooked buckwheat, trust me, the microwave is your best friend. Just remember to cover it with some plastic wrap. Otherwise, you’ll have buckwheat bits decorating your microwave interior.

If you prefer, you could also reheat it in a nonstick skillet on low heat – butter is optional. Cover the skillet with a lid for even and quick reheating. It’ll be piping hot and ready to eat in just a few minutes.

Other Eastern European Dishes To Try

  • Varenyky (Dumplings): This is one of the most classic Eastern European dishes hailing from Ukraine. These dumplings are filled with a variety of fillings like potatoes, sauerkraut, cheese, or even fruits for a sweet version.
  • Borscht: A staple of Russia and Ukraine. Borscht is a sour soup made primarily with beets. This vibrant red soup represents the culinary traditions of the region.
  • Kotlety: These are Eastern European meat patties, usually made from ground pork, beef, chicken, or turkey. They are a staple in many households and can be a fantastic complement to hearty buckwheat porridge.
  • Holubtsi: These Ukrainian stuffed cabbage rolls are filled with a mixture of meat and rice, then slowly simmered in a tomato-based sauce.


The distinction between buckwheat and kasha lies in the processing. Buckwheat groats become kasha once they undergo roasting, which enhances their nutty flavor. In fact, it’s possible to create your own kasha from raw buckwheat groats with just an oven.

Compared to white rice, buckwheat is indeed healthier. It offers a substantial amount of nutrients like protein, carbohydrates, fiber, calcium, antioxidants, and more, which are largely absent in white rice.

Among the different buckwheat variants, parboiled buckwheat stands out due to its softer texture and milder flavor. This makes it an excellent substitute for rice and other grains. It’s considered superior due to its greater nutritional content and enhanced flavor.

The issue of kasha turning mushy usually stems from cooking it for too long. To prevent this, it’s advisable to limit the amount of liquid to a maximum of 1½ cups for every cup of raw kasha. Depending on the situation, you might need to decrease the liquid even further.

Regular consumption of buckwheat can be beneficial for health. A study conducted in 2005 highlighted that the trypsin enzyme in buckwheat has antimicrobial and antibacterial properties, and can potentially offer protection against diseases like diabetes, hypertension, and tumors.

You can buy toasted buckwheat from any grocery store specializing in Eastern European foods. Additionally, various European brands sell buckwheat on online platforms like Amazon.

Don’t Miss Out on Cooking Buckwheat Kasha – It’s Sure to Delight!

Buckwheat Kasha

Definitely give this straightforward, delicious, and nourishing recipe a whirl. Its simplicity will surprise you, demanding neither an abundance of time, special ingredients, nor complicated kitchen gadgets. Consider this recipe as a foundational guide, inviting you to experiment and incorporate your own preferred flavors.

My dear food enthusiasts! Stay tuned for more updates, and show some love by liking and sharing this recipe, as well as my other creations, with your circles!

Please, take a moment to share your experiences in the comments – I’m eager to hear how your dish turned out, the unique touches you introduced, and what culinary adventure you wish to embark on next. Wishing you all the greatest!

Buckwheat Kasha

Ukrainian Buckwheat Kasha Recipe (Гречана Каша)

Ukrainian Buckwheat Kasha (Гречана Каша) recipe will surely attract fans of wholesome and filling grains. The allure lies in its simple preparation, all the while delivering a refined and delicate flavor.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Ukrainian
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 2 Servings
Calories: 446kcal


  • 1.76 oz. Lard or bacon
  • 5.29 oz. Buckwheat grain
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 tablespoon oil for frying
  • 0.25 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 0.5 teaspoon salt
  • Some greens for serving green onion and parsley


  • Measure the required amount of cereal, add to the pan, rinse under running water.
  • Put the pan on the fire, add salt, and let the grits cook for 15-20 minutes.
    Buckwheat Kasha Step 1 Prep the Cereal
  • Chop the onion and lard, add a little oil to the pan, and fry until golden brown, add black pepper.
    Buckwheat Kasha Saute the Onion and Lard
  • When the porridge is ready, mix it with fried onions and lard.
    Buckwheat Kasha Step 3 Combine and Serve



  • Choose high-quality fresh buckwheat.
  • Before cooking, soak the cereal in water for a couple of minutes.
  • Cook the porridge a little less if you prefer a more crumbly consistency, and cook a little longer if you prefer a more viscous one.
  • After cooking, let the dish brew for a while – cover the pot with a lid, and wrap it in a kitchen towel.
  • Use different spices to give the dish your favorite flavor.
  • Add butter if you want a more flavorful but fatty dish (optional).
  • There are many options for dressing, it can be based on minced meat, regular meat, mushrooms, vegetables, in general, anything. You can add your favorite foods to the fry.


Calories: 446kcal | Carbohydrates: 59g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 16mg | Sodium: 750mg | Potassium: 478mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 12IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 29mg | Iron: 2mg
Olena Medvedieva

Olena Medvedieva

Content Writer


Content Writer, Meal Planning, Recipe Development, Food Editor, Cooking-video Maker, Culinary Storytelling, Food Photographer, Food Stylist, Chef


Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, Ukraine

  • Program: Educational and Scientific Institute of Philology
  • Focus: Deepening students’ understanding and expertise in languages, literature, and cultural studies.

Introducing Olena, a culinary enthusiast from Ukraine, whose journey from philology studies to the world of food photography and styling is nothing short of inspiring. With a deep-seated love for both cooking and capturing stunning visuals, Olena’s work reflects her passion for culinary arts and her commitment to showcasing the beauty of Ukrainian cuisine. Her expertise extends beyond the kitchen, as she combines her creative talents to produce captivating images that grace numerous online platforms and publications.

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