These golden millet cakes are laced with curry powder, scallions, carrots and peas, and are served with a cooling cucumber and mint raita. You can serve them as a side dish or pair them with a simple salad for a vibrant and healthy weeknight meal (see below for how I get my kids to eat them!). The cakes are warm and slightly spicy, the raita is creamy and refreshing, and the result is totally addicting.

Millet cakes on plate with fork, topped with cucumber mint raita.

What is millet?

Millet is a quick-cooking and nutritious whole grain with a nutty, almost corn-like flavor. It’s extremely versatile, and we eat it not only in cakes like these, but also in this granola, as a side dish in place of rice or polenta, and as the base for grain bowls (check out my book, Build-a-Bowl, for a ton of recipe ideas!). 

Uncooked millet grains in measuring cup

Easy millet cakes recipe

Process shot of making millet cakes, divided into 4 quadrants, showing the cooked millet in the pot, the millet cake mixture in a bowl, the formed millet cakes on a baking sheet, and the cooked millet cakes in a skillet

To make the cakes, the millet is first cooked like a rice pilaf. First, sauté vegetables (scallions and carrots) and aromatics (garlic, ginger and curry powder) until fragrant, then add the grains and let them toast slightly. Pour in water and bring it to boil, then cover the pot and simmer the grains until the water is absorbed and the millet is tender.

Cooked millet cakes in skillet

Once cooled, the millet mixture is mixed with an egg (you can omit the egg for a vegan version, although the cakes will be crumblier) and shaped into patties. The patties can be completely assembled in advance, and I often make them the day before. In fact, they’re one of my go-to dinners for busy Mondays! I’ll prep the cakes on Sunday; pop them in the fridge; and come Monday I have a quick and nutritious meal at my fingertips.

Cooked millet cakes on plate with cucumber mint raita in a bowl on the side

Right before eating, the millet cakes are sautéed in coconut oil (or you can use olive oil or a neutral vegetable oil) until golden and crisp on the outside, and tender and creamy in the middle.

Make them your own!

Two millet cakes on serving plate, topped with cucumber mint raita, with a fork alongside and a bite taken out

These cakes are flavored with green onions, shredded carrots, garlic, ginger and curry powder. Frozen peas are added at the end for a sweet pop of color and texture. However, feel free to use other vegetables and spices according to what you have or like! Think diced shallots or leeks, shredded butternut squash, slivered greens, chili powder, fresh herbs… Your palate is the limit. 

How do you serve millet cakes?

Hand dolloping cucumber mint raita onto cooked millet patties

I serve these curried cakes with a creamy cucumber mint raita (or you could make a simple garlic yogurt with grated garlic and a touch of lemon juice). The cakes are a fabulous appetizer on their own or a healthy and delicious main course when paired with a salad. They also make for awesome sliders! For my kids, I sandwich the cakes and raita between soft sweet rolls as mini burgers. They love them! (p.s. When the girls were babies, they would devour these cakes on their own. Oh how I miss those eat-anything baby palates! 😁)

Cucumber mint raita in bowl

Tips for making millet cakes

  • Pack the millet mixture tightly into about 3-inch cakes (if you make them any bigger they tend to fall apart).
  • Use a heavy bottomed non-stick pan when sautéing the cakes, and make sure the pan is well oiled so that the cakes don’t stick. I love my Scanpan, which is Teflon free and scratch resistant.
  • Cooking the cakes in batches will make them easier to flip (also, you never want to overcrowd a pan when sautéeing).
  • A thin fish spatula is the perfect tool for flipping the cakes.

Get the recipe!

Curried Millet Cakes with Cucumber Mint Raita

These golden millet cakes are laced with curry powder, scallions, carrots, peas, garlic and ginger, and are served with a cooling cucumber and mint raita. I pair them with a simple salad for a vibrant and healthy weeknight meal or easy lunch (the cakes can be assembled the day before then sautéed right before eating). The millet cakes are warm and slightly spicy, the raita is creamy and refreshing, and the result is totally addicting. Be sure to pack the cakes tightly so that they hold together, and make sure that your non-stick pan is well oiled. If you don't have time to make the raita, mix Greek yogurt with a touch of grated garlic and a splash of lemon juice instead.

Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword how do you make millet cakes, millet cakes, millet recipes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Author Nicki Sizemore

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons virgin coconut oil, divided, plus more as needed
  • 5 green onions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
  • 1 large carrot, shredded on the medium holes of a box grater
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 cup millet, rinsed in cold water and drained
  • 3 cups water
  • ½ cup frozen peas
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • Flaky sea salt, for serving
  • Cucumber Mint Raita, for serving (see below)

Instructions

  1. In a medium saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of the coconut oil over medium-high heat. Add the green onions, carrot, garlic and ginger, and season with salt and pepper. Cook 3-5 minutes, stirring often, until tender. Add the curry powder and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add the millet and stir well. Pour in the water, and add 1 teaspoon of salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook, covered, until the water is absorbed, about 18-20 minutes. Remove the the pan from the heat, and let sit, covered, 5 minutes, to steam.

  2. Transfer the millet mixture to a large bowl and fold in the peas. Let sit to cool, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Add the beaten egg and mix well.
  3. Line a pan with parchment or wax paper. Using damp hands, form the millet mixture into 10-12 tightly-packed patties, roughly 3 inches in diameter. Place the patties on the prepared pan. Do Ahead: The patties can be covered with a sheet of wax paper then plastic wrap and refrigerated overnight. Pat dry with a paper towel before sautéing.

  4. Heat 1-2 tablespoons of coconut oil in a large nonstick or well-seasoned cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, cook the patties until golden brown on both sides, about 3-6 minutes per side (add additional coconut oil between batches, as needed). Transfer the patties from the pan to plates or a platter, and sprinkle with flaky sea salt. Serve warm with raita alongside, if you wish.

Recipe Notes

  • Pack the millet mixture tightly into about 3-inch cakes (if you make them any bigger they tend to fall apart).
  • Use a heavy bottomed non-stick pan when sautéing the cakes, and make sure the pan is well oiled so that the cakes don’t stick. I love my Scanpan, which is Teflon free and scratch resistant.
  • Cooking the cakes in batches will make them easier to flip (also, you never want to overcrowd a pan when sautéeing).
  • A thin fish spatula is the perfect tool for flipping the cakes.

Cucumber Mint Raita

This creamy raita is also delicious on cooked fish, lamb burgers and falafel.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword cucumber mint raita, how to make raita, raita recipe
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 2 cups
Author Nicki Sizemore

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups Greek yogurt
  • 1 garlic clove, grated
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint
  • 2 scallions, finely chopped
  • ½ cup finely chopped seedless cucumber
  • Salt and pepper

Instructions

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl, and season with salt and pepper. Stir well to combine. Let sit 10 minutes to allow the flavors to meld.

Recipe Notes

Do Ahead: The raita can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 1 day.

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