Farro: Discover a Whole New Whole Grain

Recently I cooked a whole grain that I really enjoyed, called farro. Farro, also known as the pharaoh’s wheat, originated in Egypt centuries ago and is a member of the wheat family. It is primarily grown in Italy now, and is considered a healthy alternative to wheat pasta there.

It has the appearance of barley when cooked and needs to be rinsed before cooking. Cooking time is only 15 minutes.

A ½ cup of cooked faro has 100 calories and 7 grams of protein. It has 30 grams of carbohydrates and provides 12% of your daily iron needs.

It can be difficult to find at the store. I finally found it at Costco for a 48oz bag for $8 dollars, which makes it light on your wallet for your family meals.

Healthy ingredient contribution of farro are:

  • Carbohydrates: Farro is an excellent source of complex carbohydrates, specifically cyanogenic glucosides that have been found to stimulate the immune system, regulate blood sugar levels and lower cholesterol.
  • Fiber: Farro is a great source of fiber, containing more than other “healthy grains,” such as brown rice and quinoa.
  • Protein: As an excellent source of protein, farro can form a complete source of protein in vegetarian dishes when paired with legumes (beans, peas or lentils).
  • Gluten: Farro contains gluten, but is in a form that is said to be easier for people with intolerances to digest.
  • Vitamins: Farro contains vitamin B3, also known as niacin, which assists in metabolizing carbohydrates, fats and proteins.
  • Minerals: Farro is a good source of vital minerals such as zinc, magnesium and iron.
  • Antioxidants: Farro contains lignans that give it antioxidant properties.

Farro is great to utilize as a healthy-carb when sprinkled over your salad. You can make a hearty summer salad by adding 0% Greek yogurt, lemon juice, spices, red bell peppers, broccoli and red onions to it. I’ve used it under a chicken/vegetable dish for a well-rounded entrée. Everyone loved it.

It’s always good to experiment with new, unfamiliar foods to keep your menu  fresh and healthy. Farro is worth the effort to find and use because it keeps you healthy and full of energy.

Try this farro recipe and discover how delicious this grain can be!


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