Winter Farro Salad for Clean Eating

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Hope you all had time to recover from Thanksgiving over the weekend. Recover has a negative connotation but truly, don’t you feel the need to recover from vacations and sickness alike? I think you can recover from both the positive and negative – really from anything that takes a gregarious amount of energy.

So yes, I’m recovered from Thanksgiving. Thanks for asking!

It seems as though my entire town was in recovery mode on Sunday. I know this because I ordered Chinese food from a local place at 4:36 p.m. and, after sitting in the restaurant until 6 p.m. without so much as an egg roll in my hand, I finally left. They were so overwhelmed with orders that they shut down delivery and take out orders at 5:30 p.m. just to catch up with those waiting to be fulfilled. I understood though – we all felt like Chinese food after a weekend of turkey and stuffing. Isn’t that how it goes?

Well, without Chinese food, I had to recover in a different sort of way. I made a farro salad that almost instantly reminded me of a clean eating salad I made last January, to inspire clean eating in the wake of holiday spoilage. I titled this blog post in honor of last January’s salad, but changed things up with my new friend farro.

Winter Farro Salad |

Farro is a food that I don’t have much experience with (unlike the love of my life, quinoa) but I’m growing ever more fond of the little brown grain. Depending on the type of farro you get from your local grocery store, it may require overnight soaking (whole grain farro) or simple cooking directions similar to rice or quinoa (semi-pearled farro or pearled farro). If all else fails, follow the package directions but whatever you do, make this farro salad if any clean eating recovery is needed this holiday season.

Winter Farro Salad

Serving Size: Serves 4

A winter salad if there ever was one - loaded with nutrient-heavy foods and hearty enough to get you through the colder months.


  • 1 cup dry farro
  • 1.5 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1/2 head napa cabbage, quartered then thinly sliced
  • 1 cup Maytag blue cheese crumbles
  • 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 green apple, cut into chunks, wedges, or thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup pomegranate arils (seeds)
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 350 and spread walnuts in a glass dish or pie plate. Toast in oven for approximately 10 minutes. Remove and set aside to cool, then roughly chop.
  2. Combine farro and broth in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to low. Let cook for 12-15 minutes, until broth has been fully absorbed. Off the heat and let sit with cover on for an additional 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork and transfer to large bowl to cool.
  3. Once farro is cooled to room temperature, combine cabbage, blue cheese, onion, apple, pomegranate arils, and walnuts. In a separate small bowl, whisk vinegar and honey, then add olive oil a little at a time until well incorporated. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Drizzle dressing onto farro salad a little at a time, tossing in between, until salad is well covered but not dripping (you don't want dressing accumulating in the bottom of the bowl). Serve!
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Winter Farro Salad | everylittlethingblog.comThis farro salad does resemble a Waldorf salad, what with the walnuts and apples. But the similarities end there, as the blue cheese and red onion smack you right across the face (in the kindest way possible).

Winter Farro Salad |

I implore you to use quality blue cheese in this salad too. If you’re going to eat such a stinky cheese as is, make it good cheese! I used Maytag crumbles because I prefer the taste. And did you know that blue cheese pairs wonderfully with not only apples, but honey as well? This salad was made to highlight the cheese, and the farro makes a beautiful backdrop. And the pomegranate seeds? Those are the twinkling lights above the stage.

Winter Farro Salad |

So if you need a bit of recovery in between holidays this season, consider this farro salad (or really, any other clean eating recipe). Not only does the food help your body recover, but I do believe the chopping, dicing, and mixing helps your soul recover just as well.

What do you eat when you need to recover?

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  1. Forget the dishes… I hate dividing up the leftovers and parting with the left over pecan pie and stuffing!

  2. I never really ate farro until sometime last year and now it is one of my favorite grains (maybe foods)! This salad looks delicious!

    Luci’s Morsels – fashion. food. frivolity.

    • I still don’t have much experience with it, to be honest, other than this recipe (which I love!). I need to experiment more with farro (and millet and wheat berries…). Thanks so much for commenting – I love this salad!

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