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Farro Risotto with Spinach Walnut Pesto and Roasted Tomatoes

Farro Risotto with Spinach Walnut Pesto and Roasted Tomatoes

Serves: 5

Category: Main Dishes - Vegan
Tags: Athletic/Higher caloric

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Rated by: 3 members

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Farro, an ancient grain with a creamy texture and slightly nutty flavor, replaces rice in this Nutritarian risotto. It is complemented perfectly by a rich walnut pesto and savory roasted tomatoes.

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6 cups low sodium or no-salt-added vegetable broth
1 1/2 cups farro
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 shallot, chopped
1/2 cup dry white wine or additional vegetable broth
10 plum tomatoes
black pepper
For the Pesto:
2 cloves garlic
1/2 cup walnuts
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup water
1/2 tablespoon Dr. Fuhrman's MatoZest (or other no-salt seasoning blend, adjusted to taste)
1/2 tablespoon nutritional yeast
1 cup fresh basil leaves
4 cups fresh spinach


In a medium saucepot, heat broth to a simmer over medium heat. Reduce heat to low and keep warm.

Heat 2-3 tablespoons water in a large skillet and saute garlic and shallots until softened. Add farro and cook for one minute, stirring constantly. Stir in wine; cook 1 to 2 minutes or until all the wine is absorbed.

Add 1/2 cup hot broth and cook until almost absorbed, stirring occasionally. Continue adding broth in 1/2 cup increments and stirring occasionally about 45 minutes or until farro is tender.

While farro is cooking, prepare the roasted tomatoes and pesto.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut tomatoes lengthwise and remove stem portion. Place tomatoes cut side up on a rimmed baking pan that has been lightly wiped with oil. Sprinkle with black pepper and roast for about 25 minutes or until tomatoes are soft and beginning to collapse.

To make the pesto:
Add the garlic, walnuts, vinegar, water, MatoZest and nutritional yeast to a food processor or blender and blend at high speed. Turn to low speed and add the basil and spinach and blend to a chunky consistency. Set aside.

When farro is done, mix with desired amount of pesto and serve with roasted tomatoes.

Calories 391; Protein 13 g; Carbohydrates 59 g; Sugars 6 g; Total Fat 10.1 g; Saturated Fat 0.8 g; Cholesterol 0 mg; Sodium 209 mg; Fiber 11.8 g; Beta-Carotene 2075 ug; Vitamin C 27 mg; Calcium 126 mg; Iron 4.6 mg; Folate 85 ug; Magnesium 61 mg; Potassium 537 mg; Zinc 1 mg; Selenium 1.4 ug

Comments (8):



09/08/2014 01:55 PM

Rated this recipe: (no rating)

Im going to try this with 100% whole wheat pasta since im out of farro at this time. Plus I didn't grow plum tomatoes this year, so I tm going to add my gardens tomatoes which will be a little more richer flavor then plum tomatoes. Just reading the ingredients I know it will be an excellent meal. Thank you!


09/08/2014 03:28 PM

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Farro is not gluten-free. I am a new member and am starting to realize that Dr. Fuhrman's recipes are not necessarily gluten-free, it would be nice if there could be an indication on each recipe whether it's gluten-free or not. I've been gluten-free for 14 years so I can figure it out quickly but there are so many people who are new to avoiding gluten and may get mixed up regarding some of the grains, or maybe indicate a gluten-free substitute for the grain or pasta in recipes. Thank you!


09/09/2014 11:33 AM

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Hi JillWriter:

It's easy and fun to make substitutions on all these recipes. For instance, though I'm not on a gluten-free diet, I substitute ground walnuts for breadcrumbs in tofu ball recipes. Here, you could easily substitute quinoa or beans.


10/06/2015 07:27 PM

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Hi Free2choose

That is very sweet of you to give JillWriter alternatives for Farro, but I think you may have missed the point. JillWriter says it is easy for her to pick that it is not gluten free. Her point (I think) was to help the new comers to a gluten free diet, so that they can identify gluten free to non gluten free recipes. Best wishes to all on this site.


10/06/2015 07:35 PM

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I'm a long time Celiac and know how to get around recipes with gluten. I would love that this site would share what is gluten free and also offer options for those that can be adapted to gluten free. Being inclusive is a blessing!
In this case, try millet or buckwheat or as already suggested, quinoa...


01/01/2016 05:18 PM

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I made this substituting quinoa for the farro and adjusted the liquid accordingly. It was delicious!
This comment was last edited on 01/01/2016 05:19 PM


05/11/2017 06:22 PM

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I'm going to try this with buckwheat. I'm wondering if the balsamic will make the pesto too sweet. 


08/31/2017 05:00 PM

Rated this recipe: (no rating)

Labor intensive and time consuming recipe with some very good ingredients. The 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar overwhelmed the other flavors. Cut it to 1 Tbs or omit entirely.