A Squared: Farro & Beet Salad with Sage Pesto

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Farro & Beet Salad with Sage Pesto

In a week I am officially re-entering the workforce. And I have some seriously mixed feelings about. While I'm really looking forward to a return to routine, adult conversation, and a reason to blow dry my hair, it still feels a little too soon. In the beginning, 12 weeks sounded like an eternity-- and to be fair, it's more than several of my girlfriends have been able to take off with their newborns. But now that we are almost there, I still feel like we're winging this whole scheduling thing and that my baby girl could still use a just a few more weeks with me to iron it all out. Here's hoping that our nanny can work her magic and get this baby on a schedule that does not include a bunch of mini naps followed by one long one that last through dinnertime. We take what we can get, am I right?

Anyway... I'm also looking forward to getting myself back on an appropriate eating regimen again. I really thrive on organization and schedules-- mentally, physically, and emotionally-- so being at home all day at the mercy of my baby's schedule and my pantry at my disposal has not done me any favors when it comes to fitting back into my pre-baby clothes. So, I decided to give myself a little headstart this week and made a huge batch of farro and turned it into a healthy and filling salad that was ready for me to eat all week long.

Farro is a wholesome whole grain that I absolutely love cooking with (check out my other farro recipes here). It's a great basis for a salad and it's nutty flavor works really nicely with the toasted walnuts and hearty beets in this salad. And beets and goat cheese are a tried and true flavor combination, so the addition of goat cheese here was a no brainer. The really unique flavor factor in this salad is the dressing. I used a little vinegar and fresh lemon juice to thin out some homemade sage and walnut pesto for a bright and herbaceous kick of flavor in this salad. Homemade pesto is super easy to make, freezes well, and is a great way to use up your fresh herbs at the end of the growing season. I also like to add some greens to the mix, which bulk up the salad and make it even healthier and heartier. In this salad, I like an arugula and spinach mix because it adds just the right amount of peppery flavor.


  • 3 cups cooked farro
  • 3 cups arugula & baby spinach mix
  • 1 cup cooked beets, cut into 1/2-inch dice *I like these Melissa's Steamed Baby Beets. They're available in my grocer's produce department and ready to eat, so all you have to do is dice them up.
  • 3/4 cup walnut halves & pieces, toasted
  • 1/4 cup prepared sage & walnut pesto *See my recipe here
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 Tbs. white wine vinegar
  • 4 oz. crumbled goat cheese

Add farro, arugula & spinach, beets and walnuts to a large bowl. Toss gently to combine.

In a small bowl, whisk together pesto, lemon juice, and vinegar. Pour over the farro mixture and stir to fully incorporate.

Top with crumbled goat cheese and enjoy.

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