What is the difference between buckwheat and wheat?
Can you eat buckwheat if you have a wheat allergy or if you're gluten intolerant?
Buckwheat is nothing to do with wheat, it is a form of sorrel and related to rhubarb. It's flour is used in wheat free cooking - buckwheat pasta, etc
Buckwheat looks and tastes like a grain but it is really an herb related to rhubarb. It is gluten free, which makes it safe for those sensitive to the gluten found in wheat, barley, and rye, but do read everything and be careful. Buckwheat can be made into flour, pancake mix, and a variety of baked goods but be sure it is not combined with wheat or other grain flour if you are buying prepared foods.
Buckwheat kernels are a medium brown and have a pyramidal shape. You can get them in cooperatives or health food stores that offer bulk grains. Buckwheat has an almost nutty flavor and is gluten-free. When I worked at Hippocrates Institute in Boston in the mid-70s, we grew buckwheat and harvested the "lettuce" (similar in appearance to clover) after it reached a height of four to six inches to add to our salads. You can also sprout the kernels and eat the sprouts raw. Whatever form, buckwheat is a wonderful, gluten-free alternative to wheat.
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