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+ servings

Farro With Spinach, Lemon, Basil, and Pine Nuts

My recipe is inspired by an orzo dish in Cooking With Too Hot Tamales by Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger. I like to cook farro and beans when I have more time over the weekend and store them for later use in multiple dishes during the week. This recipe comes together quickly on a weeknight if the farro and beans are made ahead. This hearty dish can be made earlier in the day and then reheated.
Course Entree, Side Dish
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 7 minutes
Cook Time 18 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Yield 4 servings
Calories 199 kcal
Author Dana @ FoodieGoesHealthy.com


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 small onion chopped small
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 large bunch of baby spinach wash and leave wet (about 5 oz.)
  • Several grinds of black pepper
  • A few pinches of kosher salt
  • 1-1/3 cups cooked farro made from 1 cup of raw farro
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • Zest from 1/2 of a small lemon
  • 1 cup cooked white beans optional Note that home-cooked flavorful beans will taste best, but canned beans can be substituted.
  • 6 large basil leaves julienned
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese optional


  1. In a large sauté pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté for about 8 minutes. Add garlic and sauté for 2 minutes more, until the onions are translucent.
  2. Then add the spinach with the water still clinging to the leaves. Sauté until the spinach is wilted and just tender, about 3 minutes. Sprinkle the spinach with a large pinch of salt and a couple grinds of pepper.
  3. Next add the cooked farro, pine nuts, lemon zest, and cooked beans (optional) to the pan. Stir to combine, and warm up all the ingredients on the stove stirring occasionally.
  4. Add the basil and parmesan cheese (optional). Taste for seasoning: add a few pinches of salt and several grinds of pepper. Also, taste for balance of flavors, and add a little more zest or basil if preferred. Serve warm.