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Recipe: Farro Beet Salad with Raspberry Vinaigrette

This recipe for Farro Beet Salad with Raspberry Vinaigrette is super adaptable. During the peak of summer, take advantage of the fresh raspberries found in produce aisles and farmer’s markets. Otherwise, guiltlessly use frozen berries. Fresh beets are grown locally from June until December and can be found fresh year-round. No time to steam or roast a bunch of beets?  Reach into the pantry for a can of diced beets, and while you are at it, grab a can of chickpeas, too. In fact, some of you may have almost everything for this recipe lying around your dry-goods shelves and in the back of your produce bin. Except for maybe the farro. Which is too bad, because after making it once, farro might become a regular part of your whole grain rotation. Delicious and nutritious. Good and good for you.

As with most any salad, feel free to personalize it to taste. Finish it with fresh herbs, or with nuts or shaved cheese if the mood strikes. Leftover roasted root vegetables would be nice in the colder months, as would segments of orange or grapefruit. And in the peak of summer, make sure to save a few of those fresh whole raspberries to add some pop to the finished product.

Farro Beet Salad with Raspberry Vinaigrette

(Serves 6-8)

  1. For Raspberry Vinaigrette
    ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
    ¼ cup red wine vinegar
    1 ½- 2 cups raspberries, fresh or frozen
    1 medium shallot, minced
    1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
    1-2 Tablespoons honeySalt and pepper, to taste
    3 cups farro, cooked
    12 ounce can chickpeas, drained
    12 ounce can diced beets, or 3-4 medium fresh beets, cooked and diced
    1-2 handfuls baby spinach, or other salad greens
    1-2 handfuls shredded carrotsMethod:

    1. Prepare Raspberry Vinaigrette: Add olive oil, red wine vinegar, raspberries, shallot, Dijon and honey to a blender or food processor. Puree ingredients until smooth. Taste and adjust the amount of honey, salt and pepper, if needed. Refrigerate vinaigrette until needed.
    2. In a salad bowl, mix the farro and chickpeas together and dress with half of the Raspberry Vinaigrette. Bring this mixture to room temperature before serving.
    3. To serve, gently toss the farro and chickpeas with the diced beets, baby spinach and shredded carrots. Dress with more vinaigrette if necessary. Serve immediately.

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