Farro is a healthy whole grain with a nutty flavor and a slightly chewy texture. It readily absorbs vinaigrettes and sauces, making it the perfect gateway to whole grains (we understand that quinoa isn't for everyone...). It's commonly found in the healthy foods section of grocery stores, but don't let that dissuade you! It's so delicious that you'll forget it's good for you. You can also find it in Italian import stores or online.
If you think of this recipe as more of a guide, then this becomes an incredibly versatile side dish or light main course. There are countless ways to change up our recipe so it's always new and interesting:
- You can change the base to freekah, bulgar, or any other whole grain. Or use pasta, if you're not interested in whole grains (try our toasted fregola pasta, available in stores).
- We used our recipe for Creamy Italian Vinaigrette, which highlights our Neapolitan Herb Balsamic Vinegar, but you could really use any of your favorite vinaigrettes!
- If you have a handful of vegetables on hand, just add them to this dish. We like fresh corn, roasted green beans, or grilled asparagus with farro.
- Make it into a heartier meal by adding diced chicken, sliced pork tenderloin, grilled shrimp, or roasted mushrooms.
- Change up the cheese; goat cheese, blue cheese, and burrata all complement farro beautifully (although we recommend sticking with something on the softer/creamier side).
- Roast half of an acorn squash, warm a farro salad, and serve the salad in the squash (like a bowl!). Drizzle the whole thing with Neapolitan Herb Balsamic Vinegar and your favorite olive oil and serve a scoop of farro with a slice of the squash.
- We like to serve grain salads slightly warm, but they're equally delicious at room temperature or even cold!
The world is your oyster with this adaptable farro salad!
serves 2 as a main or 4 as a side
- 1 cup farro
- 1/2 cup Creamy Italian Vinaigrette (recipe here)
- 8 oz fresh mozzarella cheese
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes
- handful of fresh basil leaves
- salt & pepper to taste
- optional: flaky sea salt (such as Maldon) and your favorite olive oil (we suggest Basil, Eureka Lemon, or a Single Varietal Extra Virgin Olive Oil), to garnish
- Cook farro according to package's instructions. Drain and let cool slightly (until it stops steaming).
- While the farro is cooking, make the vinaigrette and prep the other ingredients. Tear or dice the mozzarella into bite size pieces. Cut the cherry tomatoes in half. Tear or chop the basil leaves into small pieces.
- Add vinaigrette to the warm farro and mix well. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
- Gently fold in the mozzarella, tomatoes, and basil, reserving a little bit of each to garnish the top.
- Place the farro salad in a serving bowl. Top with reserved ingredients. Finish with a drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkle of flaky sea salt, and a few cracks of fresh black pepper.