This winter farro salad recipe features maple balsamic roasted vegetables, including fennel, Brussels sprouts, golden beets, and sweet potatoes, tossed with pomegranate arils and feta cheese. It’s a hearty vegetarian dish that’s delicious warm or cold. Make it for a quick dinner, in advance for meal prep lunches, or even for Christmas!
If you’re looking for a new way to serve seasonal veggies that isn’t soup, this delicious winter farro salad is for you! The texture and flavors are on point, thanks to chewy, nutty farro, hearty vegetables, and a sweet maple balsamic dressing. Plus, pomegranate arils add a flavor burst while feta cheese brings a complementary salty punch.
I’m loving this recipe as a make-ahead lunch for the busy holiday season, but I also think it would be beautiful on your table for Christmas dinner! Its festive vibes are definitely in line with those of the Parmesan Brussels Sprouts Salad, Kale and Broccoli Salad with Lemon Parmesan Dressing, and Shredded Brussels Sprouts Salad with Dates. I’m also reminded of the Fall Roasted Vegetable Couscous Salad and Acorn Squash Salad with Tahini Dressing when I make it!
You can make farro salad in advance and enjoy it warm or cold. The opportunities to satisfy your winter veggie cravings are endless! I’d love to hear how you enjoy this recipe, so remember to leave a comment if you try it. If you’re in the mood for more farro, see my Farro Bake with Pesto and Kale.
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Farro: Use pearled farro, since it cooks more quickly. This is the kind that’s most often sold in the US. I love the Bob’s Red Mill brand and also really like the quick cooking farro from Trader Joe’s! You can make the farro in advance to save prep time too.
- Sweet potato, golden beet, Brussels sprouts, and fennel: The stars of this winter farro salad, these hearty vegetables really pair well together and provide a good variety of texture and flavors. I used a golden beet instead of a regular red one because red beets tend to impart their color to the whole dish. You can feel free to substitute other vegetables, such as squash for the sweet potato or even something like turnips or celeriac. However, keep in mind that the flavors will be different depending on what you use. Remember to cut the veggies into similar sizes too so that everything cooks evenly.
- Feta cheese: Crumbled feta adds some saltiness to balance the sweet dressing. You can substitute shaved parmesan or crumbled goat cheese if desired or even omit the cheese if you want to make the salad vegan.
- Pomegranate arils: Yum! I tend to buy them already removed from the pomegranate, but you can remove them yourself by following my tips in my video on How to Prepare a Pomegranate.
- Maple syrup: This is vital to the flavor of the dressing/veggie marinade, but I suppose you could sub honey if that’s all you have.
- Balsamic vinegar: Another vital component of the dressing, it’s not easy to replace.
- Extra virgin olive oil, garlic powder, and salt: The rest of the dressing ingredients.
The full recipe card for winter farro salad, including ingredient quantities, is at the bottom of the post. Here’s a preview of the steps with photos to guide you.
Dice the golden beets and sweet potatoes into ½-inch cubes. Cut the fennel into ½-inch pieces and quarter the Brussels sprouts. You want everything to be fairly similar in size so that they cook evenly.
Make the dressing, then toss the vegetables in ½ of the dressing.
Roast the vegetables until golden brown and tender.
In the meantime, prepare the farro according to package instructions.
Combine the farro, roasted veggies, pomegranate arils, and feta cheese in a bowl. Add the rest of the dressing.
Toss until well-coated. Enjoy warm or cold!
Keep winter farro salad leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. It’s easy to prepare in advance to serve at a later time, especially since it tastes good cold too. You do not need to wait to dress the salad before serving and can add the dressing before storing in the fridge.
Since it’s so hearty, farro salad can be a vegetarian main course. However, it usually works best as a side dish. Feel free to add beans or shredded chicken for more protein. It would look lovely on a Thanksgiving or Christmas table!
More Salad Recipes
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Winter Farro Salad
- 1 cup uncooked pearled farro - about 3 cups cooked
- 1 small sweet potato - peeled and diced into ½-inch cubes
- 1 medium golden beet - peeled and diced into ½-inch cubes
- 1 pound Brussels sprouts - quartered
- 1 bulb fennel - cut into ½-inch pieces
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ⅓ cup balsamic vinegar
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ cup crumbled feta cheese - more to taste
- ½ cup pomegranate arils
- Prepare the farro according to package instructions. Most kinds of farro take about 30 minutes to cook, so you should start it right away. Use a quick cooking variety, like the kind from Trader Joe's, to save time.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F/218 degrees C. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Prepare the vegetables. You want to make sure they are all similar sizes, especially the golden beet and sweet potato (½-inch cubes), so that they cook evenly. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.
- In a measuring cup or small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, kosher salt, and garlic powder. You will have about ⅔ cup of dressing.
- Pour half of the dressing (⅓ cup) over the veggies in the bowl. Toss until coated.
- Spread the veggies out in a single layer on the lined baking sheet. Roast for 25 to 35 minutes until golden brown and tender, stirring about halfway through cooking time.
- When the veggies are finished roasting, combine them with the cooked farro, feta cheese, and pomegranate arils in a large bowl. Pour the rest of the dressing over the salad. Stir until well-coated.
- Enjoy warm or cold after it's been refrigerated for a while.
- Leave a rating or review by tapping the stars on this recipe card (above) or in the comments section (at the end of the post).
- Keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. You can prep the salad in advance to serve at a later time and don’t need to wait to dress it before serving. It holds up well already dressed.
- Omit the cheese to make vegan.
- To cut back on prep time, make one or all of the components ahead of time.