THIS POST IS SPONSORED BY
Bob’s Red Mill, who I’m so excited to partner & share with you all throughout 2021. Bob’s Red Mill is my longtime go-to for natural & whole grain foods, & Bob’s Organic Farro is a PWWB pantry staple. All thoughts & opinions are my own.
A warm weather fave…
Happy Spring, friends!!! One my biggest Spring cravings this year? Cold salads. Hearty & healthy cold salads are one of my go-to warm weather meals. They’re easy to toss together, perfect for meal prep, & they dance the fine line between “light lunch” & “easy side dish for dinner” beautifully. That’s a win in my book!
This Greek Farro Salad is one of my all-time favorites, & I’m excited to finally share it here on PWWB! It starts with a base of a classic Greek salad, which I make a little more substantial by adding hearty chickpeas & farro. It delivers crave-worthy light + bright Mediterranean flavors, but it’s also filled with tons of texture – crunchy cucumbers, creamy feta & chickpeas, &, of course, satisfying farro. I make it with Bob’s Red Mill Organic Farro, which has been a pantry staple in my kitchen for years.
Bob’s Red Mill is my longtime favorite natural food brand; I count on Bob’s for seriously high-quality staples that I can put to use in a variety of different ways. It’s been especially fun to see more & more of their products pop up at my co-op & other grocery stores here in Minneapolis in recent years. I’m thrilled to partner with them throughout 2021 to highlight some of my favorite products, starting today with this Mediterranean farro salad!
Greek Farro Salad – Recipe Highlights:
This easy Greek farro salad recipe is…
- …a perfect hybrid – It has everything there is to love about traditional Greek salad, with the satisfying, hearty, & plant-powered addition of chickpeas & farro. A totally substantial vegetarian salad with amazing light & bright flavors!
- …easy to make – Farro’s inactive cooking creates the perfect pocket of time to chop all of the veggies & whip up a quick Greek dressing. It all comes together in 35 minutes or less, with pantry staples & seasonal faves!
- …totally versatile – You can serve it warm or cold, as a side dish or plant-powered main, or meal prep it for the best weekday lunches ever.
Honestly, what’s not to love about that?! ♡ Read on to learn more about this Mediterranean Farro Salad, or jump straight to the recipe & get cookin’!
Mediterranean Farro Salad Key Ingredients
Like many Mediterranean recipes, this Greek farro salad is made with simple, fresh ingredients that pack a punch of light + bright flavors. It’s a total flavor-bomb & it’s a texture lover’s dream!
You will need…
- Farro – Of course, it wouldn’t be a Greek farro salad without it! Farro is one of my favorite whole grains. If it’s new to you, you’re in for such a treat – more about farro below!
- Lots of veggies! – A nod to classic Greek salad, I like to use a combination of juicy cherry tomatoes, crunchy & cooling cucumber, roasted red pepper, & quickly pickled red onions. This is definitely the type of recipe you can make work with whatever you’ve already got in your refrigerator, though, so feel free to use what you have & call it good.
- Feta – Another nod to classic Greek salad, good feta is a must. Whenever possible, I like buying feta that’s packaged in brine & dicing it into bite-sized pieces myself. Feta in brine is richer in flavor & its texture is so much creamier than the pre-crumbled stuff.
- Chickpeas – My favorite easy plant-powered protein. Good ol’ canned chickpeas work perfectly here!
What is farro?
The star ingredient in this Greek farro salad recipe! Similar in texture, appearance & flavor to barley, farro is an ancient whole grain that just so happens to be a relative of modern day wheat. Naturally high in plant-based protein & fiber, farro was a staple ingredient in ancient Roman times & continues to be popular in Italy & other Mediterranean cuisines to this day.
Farro is one of my favorite whole grains because of its rich & nutty flavor, plus it has the best hearty & chewy texture. I love using it to add substance & texture to salads & grain bowls. I love to use Bob’s Red Mill Organic Farro because it’s very high in quality & it’s so easy to prepare!
How to Cook Farro Perfectly (Every Single Time!)
Grains can be a little temperamental to cook, though, in my opinion, farro errs on the simpler end of the spectrum. While you’ll find that some recipes will direct you to prepare farro like rice (i.e. gently simmering in a certain ratio of water until absorbed), I always always boil farro (much like the way you’d boil pasta). It couldn’t be simpler & yields perfect results every time.
How to boil farro:
- Rinse well: Pop the uncooked farro in a fine mesh sieve & rinse with warm water for a good 30 seconds. Why ⇢ Raw farro has a powdery coating, which, in my experience, makes the cooking liquid pretty starchy & gives the cooked farro a gluey texture. A quick rinse washes the coating away altogether.
- Boil in salty water: Season a large pot of water with a few tablespoons of kosher salt & bring it to a roaring boil. Add the rinsed farro to the pot & cook until tender with a lovely chewy al dente bite. Pearled farro cooks up in about 30 minutes. Quick tip ⇢ Because of farro’s lengthy cook time, you’ll need to use quite a bit of water to prevent it all from boiling off before the farro finishes cooking. I typically cook up to 1 cup of pearled farro in a 4-quart Dutch oven.
- Drain & use: Once the farro is cooked, simply drain off the starchy cooking liquid through the same fine mesh sieve you used to rinse the farro & it’s ready to use in your Greek farro salad. Easy!
Other farro tips & tricks:
- Season while it’s warm. My #1 farro tip is to season your farro while it’s still warm. Warm farro will soak up whatever dressing or seasoning you’re using, making for an even more flavorful final dish.
- Farro triples in volume as it cooks! For example, 1 cup dry farro yields 3 cups cooked farro. Something to keep in mind as you decide how much farro you need to use.
- Storage: Cooked farro will keep for up to 1 week, stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. You can also freeze cooked farro in a freezer container for up to 1 month, which is ideal for batch cooking & meal prepping!
Assembling your Greek Farro Salad + a few other tips…
One of the most awesome things about farro salads is the fact that cooking farro is nearly entirely inactive, so while the farro boils on the stove, you can prep all of your veggies & whip up a simple Greek dressing. Once the farro is cooked, all you have to do is toss it all together. Pretty easy!
Quick Tips & Tricks:
Serving: I absolutely adore enjoying this Mediterranean farro salad on its own for a light + fresh vegetarian meal. The combination of hearty farro & chickpeas make it a wonderfully satisfying salad. It also doubles as a great side dish for any warm weather dinner, like Greek chicken, the best turkey burgers, or even grilled sausage. You really can’t go wrong!
Quick variations: This Greek farro salad is naturally vegetarian, but with a couple of quick tweaks it’s easily suited for other diets as well. To make it dairy-free & vegan, simply omit the feta or use your favorite vegan feta. To make it gluten-free & Celiac-friendly, simply swap the farro for your favorite gluten-free whole grain – quinoa & buckwheat are both great options for this recipe.
Storage: This Greek farro salad is also incredibly meal prep-friendly. I suggest tossing it together at the beginning of the week to have on hand as an easy meal or side dish throughout the week. It is best served within 3 days of assembly, though it’ll keep for up to 5 days stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
I can’t wait for you to try this Favorite Greek Farro Salad! I’m pretty sure that once you do, you’ll understand why it’s our fave! If you do give it a try, be sure to let me know! Leave a comment with a star rating below. You can also snap a photo & tag @playswellwithbutter on Instagram. I LOVE hearing about & seeing your PWWB creations!Print
A classic Greek salad meets everyone’s favorite whole grain in this healthy Greek Farro Salad recipe! Not only is it absolutely delicious & easy to make, it’s also incredibly versatile – serve it warm or cold, as a side dish or plant-powered main, or meal prep it for the best weekday lunches ever. Nothing not to love!
Naturally vegetarian, easily dairy-free & vegan.
- 3/4 cup Bob’s Red Mill Organic Farro, rinsed well
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1/2 medium red onion, finely diced
- 8 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
- 3 mini cucumbers, diced (about 1 1/2 cups diced)
- 6 ounces roasted red pepper, drained, rinsed, patted dry & diced
- 6 ounces feta, patted dry & cubed or crumbled
- 1 14-ounce can chickpeas, drained & rinsed
- 5 ounces baby arugula
- kosher salt & ground black pepper, to season
for the simple Greek vinaigrette:
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1/2 lemon, juiced (about 1 tablespoon juice)
- 1 clove garlic, finely chopped or grated
- 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- ground black pepper & crushed red pepper flakes, to taste
- Cook the farro: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Once boiling, season with 1 teaspoon kosher salt. Add the farro and boil 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, until your desired al dente texture is reached. Drain & immediately rinse with cold water. Set aside to drain well.
- Veggie prep: Meanwhile, as the farro cooks, prep the remaining ingredients starting with the onion. Place the finely diced red onion in a small bowl & squeeze the lemon juice over top. Stir to combine & set aside to sit as you prepare the remaining ingredients. Slice the tomatoes, dice the cucumbers, & roasted red bell pepper, etc. Once all of your ingredients are prepped, drain the lemon juice from the onions & discard.
- Make the simple Greek vinaigrette: Combine all listed ingredients in a small bowl or jar. For a little kick of heat, sprinkle in a little crushed red pepper flake. Whisk or shake to combine. Taste and season with additional kosher salt or ground black pepper as desired. Set aside, or store in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
- Assemble the farro salad: To a large bowl, add the farro, red onion, tomatoes, cucumber, roasted red pepper, feta, chickpeas, & arugula. Pour the simple Greek vinaigrette over top. Toss to combine. Taste & adjust seasonings as desired. Enjoy!
- Make-ahead & storage: This Greek Farro Salad is best when served within 3 days of assembly, though it’ll keep for up to 5 days. Store the assembled farro salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
- 15-Minute Meal Prep: If you’d like to do just a little prep in advance to help cut down on the active prep time when you make your Greek Farro Salad, go ahead & chop the veggies &/or make the simple Greek dressing:
- Prep the simple Greek vinaigrette according to Step 3 of Recipe Directions, above. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. (5 minutes active prep)
- Finely dice 1/2 medium red onion, halve or quarter cherry tomatoes, & dice 3 mini cucumbers & 6 ounces roasted red pepper. Store in separate airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. (10 minutes active prep)
Keywords: Greek farro salad, farro salad recipe, entree salads & bowls, side dish, summer, spring, vegetarian, easily dairy-free & vegan, meal prep friendly, healthy
Recipe & Food Styling by Jess Larson, Plays Well With Butter | Photography by Rachel Cook, Half Acre House.