Porridge is a food which is made with a cereal, usually oats. The oats are boiled in water or milk, or both. It is usually served hot in a bowl or dish. Some people like to add things to their porridge such as sugar or syrup.
Porridge is a traditional food in many countries in Northern Europe. It is usually eaten for breakfast. In some countries barley or other grains may be used. Porridge can be cooked in saucepans or in a microwave. Traditionally, it may be cooked in large metal kettles over hot coals.
Porridge is often given to people who are ill because it is nourishing and it is easy to eat.
Gruel is similar to porridge but is much more like a drink. It is not as nice as porridge, it is made with water. It was eaten by poor people in Victorian times. Oliver Twist, in the famous book by Charles Dickens, is given gruel to eat.