This Farro Salad with Basil Lemon Tahini Dressing is a delicious vegan salad that can be made ahead of time, making it perfect for busy workday lunches or potlucks.
Want a healthy salad recipe that doesn’t taste like a healthy salad? This farro salad recipe is for you!
I’d been playing around with the idea for this recipe for about a week and then I decided to just go for it.
At first, I was going to make a farro tabbouleh salad, but I thought it’d be too similar to this Israeli Couscous Tabbouleh Salad that’s already on the blog. So, I decided to switch things up a bit.
First, I swapped out the mint and parsley for basil.
And then I got the genius idea to drizzle it with the most amazing basil & lemon tahini dressing that I used in the past to liven up some roasted broccoli.
The result was everything I’d hoped it would be.
I ate it for lunch and dinner that day, and then for breakfast the next morning. It was that good.
It’s also amazingly good for you!
What is farro?
Farro is a grain like rice or quinoa, but it’s packed with an amazing amount of protein and fiber. It supplies you with more than 10 different vitamins and minerals and is lower in gluten than most wheat.
Farro has a hearty, chewy texture and an almost nutty flavor to it. I like to use it in casseroles, soups and salads, like this one.
You should be able to find farro easily in your grocery store near the rice.
How do you cook farro?
I like to cook my farro like I would cook pasta. Rinse the farro and then add it to a large pot of boiling, salted water and let it cook until tender, which will take about 25 minutes. Then drain. Since this is a cold salad, I also like to rinse the farro in cold running water to cut down on the cooling time.
Can you cook farro in the Instant Pot?
You can cook farro in the Instant Pot!
- Just add 1 cup of rinsed farro and 2 ½ cups water to the pot.
- Seal the lid and cook on MANUAL high pressure for 12 minutes.
- Allow the pressure to release naturally, then drain off any excess liquid.
It will take about 15 minutes for the pressure to build in the pot, and about 10 minutes for the pressure to release, so I’ve found that it’s quicker to make farro on the stovetop, but the Instant Pot is great if you’re looking for a fuss-free option.
Regardless of which way you choose to cook your farro, the cooking time will give you plenty of time to whip up the most amazing basil & lemon tahini dressing. All you need is a blender and 5-minutes!
Farro salad dressing ingredients
- Basil – or another favorite herb like parsley, cilantro, dill or a combination
- Lemon Juice
- Olive Oil
- Salt + Pepper
This basil & lemon tahini dressing is creamy, tangy and it has so much flavor! I look at it like a sophisticated version of ranch dressing.
You won’t only want it on this farro salad. You’ll also find yourself wanting to drizzle it on my easy roasted chicken, serve it as a dip with some zucchini fries, or basically just eat it with a spoon.
How to make farro salad
- Cook farro in boiling water for 20-25 minutes, until tender.
- Drain and rinse with cold water.
- Combine chickpeas, cucumber, tomatoes, scallion, olive oil, lemon juice, and salt.
- Add the cooled farro and stir to combine. Chill, covered, for 1 hour.
- Serve drizzled with lemon-basil tahini.
This farro salad is perfect for meal prep! I like to layer my ingredients in a large mason jar, with the veggies on the bottom, then the farro, then the creamy tahini dressing. Then, when I’m ready to eat, I just shake it and pour it into a bowl.
More hearty salad recipes:
- Thai Chicken Salad
- Southwest Chicken Salad with Pico de Gallo
- Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad with Mustard and Parmesan
- Shaved Fennel and Celery Salad
- Thai Beef Salad
- Cauliflower Chickpea Salad
- Lebanese Cabbage Salad
Did you Make This Farro Salad?
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More farro recipes:
Farro Salad Recipe
- 1 cup Bob’s Red Mill Farro (rinsed and drained)
- 1 15.5 ounce can chickpeas (rinsed and drained)
- 1 cucumber (cut into 1/4-inch pieces)
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes (cut in half)
- 3/4 cup minced scallions white and green parts
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
Basil & Lemon Tahini Dressing
- 1/2 cup tahini
- 1/4 cup basil loosely packed
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add farro and cook for 20-25 minutes, until tender. Drain and rinse with cold water.
- Meanwhile, in a large bowl stir together the chickpeas, cucumber, tomatoes, scallion, olive oil, lemon juice, and salt and let the mixture stand for 15 minutes.
- Add the cooled farro stir the salad well, and chill, covered, for 1 hour.
- The salad may be made 2 days in advance and kept covered and chilled. Serve the salad drizzled with lemon-basil tahini.
Basil & Lemon Tahini Dressing
- In a high powered blender, combine all ingredients.
- Blend on high until you have a smooth, creamy sauce.
- Add up to ¼ cup more water (blending again to incorporate) until you get the thickness you like. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
This post was originally published in 2019. It was updated in 2022 to add new photos and information. The recipe remains the same. Enjoy!
23 thoughts on “Farro Salad Recipe with Basil Lemon Tahini Dressing (Vegan Farro Salad)”
I don’t know why, but the cherry tomatoes are AMAZING right now. I am adding them to everything, and THIS SALAD is next! I have most everything here, and that lemon tahini dressing is calling my name…
I hope you love it Kristina!
Just made this salad this afternoon for my daughter who is coming home from school in New Hampshire and is craving a bowl of something happy, fresh and flavorful. Its delicious! She’s going to love it (if there’s enough left for her after i keep “tasting” spoonfuls out of the bowl! Great texture and the dressing fantastic- I’m thinking it will be great on an arugula roast chicken and avocado salad!
I’m so glad you like it Terry! I love your idea to add it to a chicken salad!
I made a version of this recipe to use up some of my leftover veggies. Added broccoli and carrots, diced pretty small, and it is simply delicious! It’s so good and flexible – and the dressing alone can be added to cardboard it’s so yummy. Thank you for sharing and I look forward to trying more! Happy summer : )
This recipe is giving me a tiny glimpse ahead to summer, and I seriously can’t wait – yes, for the sun, but also for fresh ingredients for this salad!
Aren’t we so ready for spring?! I can’t wait either.
This looks so delicious and is also just really pretty haha! I have never cooked farro before but it looks simple enough. I love Bob’s Red Mill, so many great options!
The first things that come to mind are healthy, hearty, and scrumptious! I love the look of this farro salad, especially the gorgeous cherry tomatoes. I can’t wait until it’s warm enough to grow my own again!
This is everything I love. Thank you, Erin!!
This looks amazing! I can’t wait tontry! But do you have any recommendations for a tomato substitution? I’m not a huge fan of tomatoes 🙂
Hi Meredith – You can leave the tomatoes out and simply add in some more chickpeas, some charred corn, or even some black beans. Hope that helps!
Healthy and tasty thing to eat.
Glad to know about this dish.
I must appreciate your creativity.
Thanks for sharing this amazing recipe with us.
This was so good! I put the farro into the vinaigrette while it was still warm and then stirred it every once in a while. That way, it absorbed all of the dressing. I also didn’t refrigerate it, as cold tomatoes don’t really appeal to me. This was fantastic served as a side for my husband and daughter for salmon burgers and a main for me with some home made pita chips. I will definitely put this in my cottage recipe box, as the ability to make it ahead will be great when we have company. Thanks for a great recipe!
I’m so happy to hear that Vivian! I love your full meal plan!
Hi- I can’t wait to make this salad! But was wondering if you could recommend an alternative dressing as I’m not a big fan of tahini-
Thank you Marianne
Hi Marianne – I think that you could swap in greek yogurt or sour cream, though you may need less lemon juice as it will make it a bit tangier already. Hope that helps!!!
Fabulous salad! Made as listed above. Only thing I didn’t realize is I put all the dressing on. Little soupy. Will add more veggies and I am sure the salad will absorb some of that dressing!
This one of my favorite salads! I make it frequently!
Can I dress this salad before refrigerating? I am planning on bringing this to a shiva and would like it to be “serving ready”….
You sure can Rachel!
Awesome! I added some vegan feta to it and it really took it to the next level! I also just subbed the dressing here for the Trader Joe’s green goddess dressing to make it a little easier and it is great.
Wonderful with crackers or tortilla chips if you’re like me and need the crunch!