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Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies Recipe

This pesto farro with spring veggies recipe is a vibrant dish that captures the essence of spring. It combines the nutty flavor of farro with the fresh taste of seasonal vegetables, all tied together with a rich pesto sauce. It's a delightful celebration of flavors that will make your taste buds sing.

Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies Recipe

Photos of Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies Recipe

The star of this recipe is Italian farro, a whole grain that's similar to barley but with a nuttier flavor and slightly chewy texture. It's becoming more popular, but if you can't find it in your regular supermarket, check a health food store or Italian specialty shop. The rest of the ingredients are fresh spring vegetables like asparagus and green peas, and a homemade or store-bought pesto sauce for added richness and depth.

Ingredients for Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies

Water: Used to cook the farro till it's tender and creamy.

Italian farro: A whole grain that adds a delightful chewiness and nuttiness to the dish.

Pesto: Adds a rich, herby flavor that complements the rest of the ingredients.

Lemon: Brings a touch of acidity to balance out the richness of the pesto.

Curly leaf parsley: Adds a fresh, herby note.

Salt and ground black pepper: Season to taste.

Asparagus: A spring vegetable that adds a fresh crunch.

Green peas: Sweet and tender, they add a pop of color and flavor.

Extra virgin olive oil: Used to sauté the vegetables.

Red pepper flakes: Adds a bit of heat.

Fresh chives: Used as a garnish for a touch of oniony flavor.

One reader, Brig Hamby says:

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This pesto farro with spring veggies recipe is a game-changer! The combination of flavors is simply divine. The farro is perfectly creamy, and the veggies are bursting with freshness. It's a delightful dish that's both satisfying and healthy. I highly recommend trying it out!

Brig Hamby

Techniques Required for Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies Recipe

How to cook farro: Farro should be cooked in boiling water until it is creamy and the water is absorbed, which takes about 30 minutes.

How to prepare pesto farro: After cooking the farro, stir in the pesto, lemon zest, lemon juice, parsley, salt, and pepper, and cover to keep warm.

How to cook asparagus and peas: Boil the asparagus and peas in a skillet with a small amount of water, then drain and season with lemon zest, lemon juice, olive oil, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper.

How to garnish with chives: Sprinkle the fresh chives over the assembled dish before serving.

How To Make Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies

Enjoy a protein-rich meal with this spring veggies packed with filling farro, all tossed in a earthy-tangy combo of pesto and lemon!

Preparation: 10 minutes
Cooking: 35 minutes
Total: 45 minutes



  • 4cupswater
  • cupsItalian farro
  • 4tbsppesto,prepared
  • 1lemon,zested and juiced, divided
  • 3tbspfresh curly leaf parsley,finely chopped
  • salt and ground black pepper,to taste
  • 1bunchasparagus,cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1cupgreen peas
  • 2tbspextra virgin olive oil
  • ¼tspred pepper flakes
  • 1tbspfresh chives,chopped


  1. Combine the water and farro in a pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-high and cook for about 30 minutes, uncovered, until farro is creamy and water is absorbed.

  2. Remove from heat and stir in the pesto, ½ of the lemon zest, ½ of the lemon juice, parsley, salt, and pepper. Cover to keep warm and set aside.

  3. Cover the bottom of a skillet with a small amount of water and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the asparagus and peas.

  4. Cover, reduce heat to medium and cook for 5 minutes. Drain and season vegetables with remaining lemon zest, lemon juice, olive oil, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper.

  5. Divide the farro among 4 bowls. Top with vegetables and garnish with chives, then serve and enjoy!


  • Calories: 385.41kcal
  • Fat: 13.99g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.99g
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 5.24g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 1.66g
  • Carbohydrates: 56.84g
  • Fiber: 11.08g
  • Sugar: 7.98g
  • Protein: 13.90g
  • Cholesterol: 1.34mg
  • Sodium: 1013.39mg
  • Calcium: 86.99mg
  • Potassium: 498.36mg
  • Iron: 5.36mg
  • Vitamin A: 39.33µg
  • Vitamin C: 26.21mg

Technique Tip for Perfecting Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies

When cooking the asparagus and peas, it's important to not overcook them. They should retain a slight crunch and vibrant color. Overcooking can result in a mushy texture and loss of nutrients. To achieve this, you can use the blanching method. This involves boiling the vegetables briefly and then plunging them into ice water to stop the cooking process immediately. This will help to preserve the texture and color of your vegetables, making your pesto farro dish visually appealing and delicious.

Time-Saving Tips for Making This Spring Veggie Recipe

Prep ahead: Prepare the pesto and farro in advance and store them in airtight containers in the refrigerator. This will save time when you're ready to cook the dish.

Use frozen veggies: Consider using frozen peas instead of shelling fresh peas to save time on prep work.

Multitask: While the farro is cooking, prep the vegetables to maximize efficiency in the kitchen.

Invest in a good pesto: Save time by using a high-quality store-bought pesto instead of making it from scratch.

One-pot cooking: Consider cooking the farro and vegetables in the same pot to minimize clean-up time.

Substitute Ingredients For Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies Recipe

  • Italian farro - Substitute with quinoa: Quinoa is a great alternative to farro as it has a similar nutty flavor and chewy texture, and it's also gluten-free, making it suitable for those with gluten sensitivities.

  • Pesto - Substitute with homemade basil and almond pesto: If you don't have store-bought pesto, you can make a homemade version using fresh basil, almonds, garlic, Parmesan cheese, and olive oil. This will provide a similar flavor profile to traditional pesto.

  • Lemon - Substitute with white wine vinegar: White wine vinegar can add a tangy acidity similar to that of lemon juice, providing a bright and acidic element to the dish.

  • Curly leaf parsley - Substitute with fresh basil: Fresh basil can be used as a substitute for parsley, adding a fresh and aromatic flavor to the dish.

  • Asparagus - Substitute with broccolini: Broccolini has a similar appearance and texture to asparagus, and it offers a slightly sweeter and more delicate flavor.

  • Green peas - Substitute with edamame: Edamame can be used as a substitute for green peas, providing a similar pop of green color and a slightly nutty flavor.

  • Extra virgin olive oil - Substitute with avocado oil: Avocado oil has a mild flavor and a high smoke point, making it a suitable substitute for extra virgin olive oil in cooking.

  • Red pepper flakes - Substitute with smoked paprika: Smoked paprika can add a smoky and slightly spicy flavor similar to red pepper flakes, enhancing the overall depth of the dish.

  • Fresh chives - Substitute with green onions (scallions): Green onions can provide a mild onion flavor and a pop of color similar to fresh chives.

Best Way to Present Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies

  1. Elevate the plating: When presenting the dish, focus on creating a visually stunning plate. Use colorful and vibrant vegetables to add visual appeal and contrast. Consider the balance of colors and shapes to create an eye-catching presentation.

  2. Incorporate edible flowers: Introduce edible flowers to the plate for a touch of elegance and sophistication. Choose flowers that complement the flavors and colors of the dish, such as pansies or nasturtiums, to add a delicate and beautiful element to the presentation.

  3. Utilize negative space: Embrace the concept of negative space on the plate to allow the dish to stand out. Use the empty space strategically to draw attention to the vibrant farro and spring vegetables, creating a sense of balance and harmony in the presentation.

  4. Focus on precision: Pay attention to the placement of each component on the plate. Precision is key in creating a visually appealing dish. Ensure that each element is thoughtfully arranged to showcase the beauty of the dish and highlight the freshness of the ingredients.

  5. Garnish with microgreens: Add a sprinkle of microgreens to the dish for a pop of color and a burst of flavor. Microgreens not only enhance the visual appeal but also contribute a delicate and fresh taste, elevating the overall presentation.

  6. Consider the plate selection: Choose the right plate to complement the dish. Opt for a porcelain or earthenware plate to provide a beautiful backdrop for the vibrant colors of the pesto farro and spring vegetables, enhancing the overall presentation.

Essential Tools for Making Pesto Farro

  • Food processor: A food processor is a versatile kitchen appliance used for chopping, slicing, shredding, and pureeing ingredients. It's perfect for making pesto and other sauces.
  • Pot: A pot is a versatile cooking vessel used for boiling, simmering, and cooking grains, pasta, and vegetables.
  • Skillet: A skillet, also known as a frying pan, is a flat-bottomed pan used for frying, searing, and sautéing ingredients.
  • Colander: A colander is a bowl-shaped kitchen utensil with perforations used to drain water from cooked ingredients such as farro or vegetables.
  • Mixing bowl: A mixing bowl is a deep bowl used for combining and mixing ingredients for the pesto and dressing.
  • Knife: A sharp knife is essential for trimming asparagus and cutting ingredients.
  • Citrus zester: A citrus zester is used to remove the zest from the lemon, adding a burst of citrus flavor to the dish.
  • Lemon squeezer: A lemon squeezer is a tool used to extract juice from lemons, providing a fresh and tangy flavor to the dish.
  • Saucepan: A saucepan is a deep cooking pan with a handle used for heating and cooking the pesto and lemon dressing.

How To Store and Freeze Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies

  • To store leftover pesto farro in the refrigerator, allow it to cool completely before transferring it to an airtight container. It will keep fresh for up to 3-4 days.
  • If you have cooked asparagus and peas leftover, store them separately from the farro in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They will maintain their quality for 2-3 days.
  • For longer storage, you can freeze the pesto farro and vegetables separately:
    • Portion the cooled farro into freezer-safe bags or containers, removing as much air as possible before sealing. Label and date the containers, and freeze for up to 2-3 months.
    • Blanch the asparagus and peas in boiling water for 1-2 minutes, then immediately transfer them to an ice bath to stop the cooking process. Drain well and pat dry before placing them in freezer-safe bags or containers. Remove excess air, label, and date the containers before freezing for up to 6 months.
  • To reheat frozen pesto farro, transfer it to the refrigerator to thaw overnight. Reheat it in a microwave or on the stovetop, stirring occasionally, until heated through. Add a splash of water or broth if needed to restore moisture.
  • Reheat frozen vegetables by steaming or microwaving them until they are heated through and tender. Do not refreeze previously frozen vegetables, as this can affect their texture and quality.

How To Reheat Leftover Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies

  • Stovetop method: place the leftover pesto farro in a saucepan over medium heat. add a splash of water or broth to help loosen the farro and prevent it from drying out. stir occasionally until heated through, about 5-7 minutes. add the spring vegetables during the last 2-3 minutes of reheating to warm them up without overcooking. if the mixture seems dry, add more liquid as needed. season with salt and pepper to taste before serving.

  • Microwave method: transfer the leftover pesto farro and spring vegetables to a microwave-safe dish. add a splash of water or broth to help keep the farro moist. cover the dish with a microwave-safe lid or plastic wrap, leaving a small vent for steam to escape. microwave on high for 1-2 minutes, then stir the contents. continue microwaving in 30-second intervals, stirring between each interval, until the farro and vegetables are heated through. season with salt and pepper to taste before serving.

  • Oven method: preheat the oven to 350°f (175°c). transfer the leftover pesto farro and spring vegetables to an oven-safe dish. add a splash of water or broth to help keep the farro moist. cover the dish with foil and place it in the preheated oven. bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the farro and vegetables are heated through. remove the foil during the last 5 minutes of reheating to allow any excess moisture to evaporate. season with salt and pepper to taste before serving.

  • Refresh the flavors: regardless of the reheating method you choose, consider adding a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, a drizzle of olive oil, or a sprinkle of grated parmesan cheese to revive the flavors of the dish. you can also garnish with fresh herbs like basil, parsley, or chives to add a pop of color and freshness.

Random Fact About Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies

Farro is an ancient grain that has been cultivated for thousands of years and was a staple food in the diet of ancient Romans. It is rich in fiber, protein, and nutrients, making it a healthy and nutritious choice for this recipe.

Is Making Pesto Farro at Home Economical?

This pesto farro with spring veggies recipe is quite cost-effective for a household. Farro is an affordable whole grain, and the addition of seasonal asparagus and green peas provides a nutritious and budget-friendly touch. The use of pesto and lemon adds depth of flavor without breaking the bank. This dish is a solid 8/10 in terms of cost-effectiveness. The approximate cost for a household of 4 people is around $12-$15, making it a wallet-friendly option for a wholesome and satisfying meal.

Is This Spring Veggie Recipe Healthy or Unhealthy?

This recipe for pesto farro with spring veggies is a nutritious and well-balanced dish. Here's why:

  • Farro is a whole grain that's rich in fiber, protein, and essential nutrients like magnesium and iron, promoting digestive health and keeping you feeling full and energized.
  • Asparagus and peas are excellent sources of vitamins A, C, and K, as well as folate and dietary fiber, supporting immune function and overall well-being.
  • Pesto, made with fresh basil, olive oil, and nuts, provides healthy fats and antioxidants that can help reduce inflammation and protect against chronic diseases.
  • The addition of lemon juice and zest adds a burst of vitamin C and brightens the flavors of the dish.
  • Parsley and chives not only add fresh, vibrant notes but also contribute to the dish's nutrient profile with their vitamins and minerals.

To make this recipe even healthier, consider the following suggestions:

  • Opt for whole grain or spelt farro to increase the fiber content and nutritional value of the dish.
  • Experiment with different types of pesto, such as kale or arugula pesto, to incorporate more leafy greens and vary the flavor profile.
  • Add additional vegetables like cherry tomatoes, bell peppers, or zucchini to boost the dish's vitamin and mineral content.
  • Use a light hand when adding salt, and consider using herbs and spices to enhance the flavors instead.
  • If you're looking to add a lean protein source, consider topping the dish with grilled chicken, shrimp, or tofu.

Editor's Thoughts on Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies Recipe

The combination of nutty farro, vibrant spring vegetables, and zesty pesto creates a delightful and wholesome dish. The farro is cooked to creamy perfection and infused with the rich flavors of pesto, lemon, and parsley. The tender-crisp asparagus and sweet green peas add a burst of freshness, complemented by the hint of heat from the red pepper flakes. The dish is beautifully balanced and bursting with seasonal flavors. It's a perfect way to showcase the bounty of spring and a delightful addition to any menu.

Enhance Your Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies Recipe with These Unique Side Dishes:

Roasted Garlic Parmesan Brussels Sprouts: Toss Brussels sprouts with garlic, parmesan, and olive oil, then roast until crispy and golden brown.
Honey Glazed Carrots with Thyme: Sauté carrots in a honey and thyme glaze until tender and caramelized, then sprinkle with fresh thyme leaves for a burst of flavor.
Grilled Peach and Arugula Salad: Grill peach slices until caramelized, then toss with fresh arugula, balsamic vinaigrette, and crumbled goat cheese for a sweet and tangy salad.
Lemon Garlic Roasted Chicken: Marinate chicken in a zesty lemon and garlic marinade, then roast until golden and juicy for a flavorful and satisfying main dish.
Berry Cobbler with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream: Bake a medley of fresh berries with a buttery biscuit topping, then serve with a scoop of creamy vanilla bean ice cream for a delightful dessert.

Alternative Recipes Similar to Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies

Grilled Vegetable Platter: Grill a variety of vegetables such as bell peppers, zucchini, and eggplant. Drizzle with balsamic glaze and sprinkle with fresh herbs for a colorful and flavorful dish.
Mango Chicken Salad: Combine grilled chicken, fresh mango, mixed greens, and a tangy vinaigrette for a refreshing and satisfying salad.
Coconut Curry Soup: Simmer coconut milk, curry paste, and vegetables such as carrots, bell peppers, and spinach for a creamy and aromatic soup. Serve with a side of jasmine rice for a complete meal.

Appetizers and Desserts to Serve with Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies

Savory Stuffed Mushrooms: Delight your taste buds with these savory stuffed mushrooms, filled with a flavorful mixture of herbs, cheese, and breadcrumbs. The perfect bite-sized appetizer to kick off any meal.
Crispy Zucchini Fritters: Indulge in these crispy zucchini fritters, packed with fresh herbs and spices, and served with a side of tangy dipping sauce. A delightful way to start your dining experience.
Chocolate Mousse: Indulge in a rich and creamy chocolate mousse, topped with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cocoa powder. This elegant dessert is perfect for a special occasion or a romantic evening in.
Berry Parfait: Layer juicy mixed berries with creamy Greek yogurt and crunchy granola for a refreshing and satisfying parfait. This dessert is not only delicious, but also packed with antioxidants and probiotics.

Why trust this Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies Recipe:

This recipe offers a delightful combination of wholesome Italian farro and vibrant spring vegetables, creating a dish that is both nutritious and flavorful. The use of pesto adds a burst of herbal goodness, while the addition of lemon juice and zest enhances the overall freshness. The careful seasoning and cooking techniques ensure that the asparagus and green peas retain their natural crunch and sweetness. With the incorporation of extra virgin olive oil and fresh chives, this recipe promises a delightful and satisfying dining experience.

Share your thoughts on the Pesto Farro with Spring Veggies Recipe in the Recipe Sharing forum.
What is farro and where can I find it?
Farro is an ancient grain with a nutty flavor and chewy texture. It is commonly found in the grains or health food section of most grocery stores, or you can also find it in specialty food stores or online.
Can I use a different type of grain instead of farro?
Yes, you can substitute farro with other grains like barley, quinoa, or brown rice. Keep in mind that the cooking time and liquid ratio may vary, so adjust accordingly.
Can I make the pesto from scratch?
Absolutely! Making pesto from scratch is a great way to customize the flavors. You can use fresh basil, pine nuts, garlic, Parmesan cheese, and olive oil. Simply blend all the ingredients together in a food processor until smooth.
Can I prepare this dish ahead of time?
Yes, you can prepare the farro and pesto in advance and store them separately in airtight containers in the refrigerator. When ready to serve, simply reheat the farro and cook the vegetables fresh for the best texture and flavor.
Can I add other vegetables to the dish?
Of course! This recipe is versatile, and you can add or substitute other seasonal vegetables such as cherry tomatoes, bell peppers, or zucchini to customize the dish to your liking. Just adjust the cooking time as needed.

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