Tomato Basil Farro Salad

tomato, basil, farro salad
Kaleigh McMordie, MCN, RDN, LD
Total Time 15 min
Prep 15 min, Cook 0 min
Yield 2 (2 cups each)

Have you ever heard of farro? It’s an ancient grain that has recently made a comeback as a delicious and nutritious way to add a larger variety of whole grains to your diet.

Also known as ‘emmer,’ farro is an ancient strain of wheat. Its chewy, dense texture and slightly nutty flavor make it a satisfying and filling grain that is great to add to salads. Adding more whole grains to your diet is a smart way to lower your blood pressure, as well as reduce risk for heart disease and diabetes, reduce inflammation, and help you maintain a healthy weight.

Tomatoes, basil, and mozzarella is a classic summer combination when ripe tomatoes are in season and at their best. Fresh herbs like basil are a great way to add flavor to dishes without having to add a lot of sodium or fat. Fresh garlic, balsamic vinegar, and extra virgin olive oil elevate the flavor of this delicious combination even more.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups cooked farro, prepared according to package directions
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, sliced thinly
  • 1/3 cup fresh mozzarella (in small balls, halved, or one big one, cubed)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • pinch freshly cracked black pepper

Preparation

  1. In a large bowl, combine farro, tomatoes, basil, and mozzarella.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together remaining ingredients. Pour over farro and gently toss to coat. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate up to 2 days.

Ingredient Variations and Substitutions

Since farro is a type of wheat, it contains gluten. You can substitute quinoa or brown rice if you are gluten-intolerant.

Cooking and Serving Tips

When purchasing farro, be sure to buy whole farro and not the pearled variety.

Pearled farro is not the whole grain, so it is lower in fiber and will not provide all the same benefits.

Prepare a large batch of farro to keep in the refrigerator and use in recipes like this one all week long. The flavor is even better after a day in the refrigerator, so this salad is great for a making ahead of time and packing for lunch.

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