Farro is an ancient grain that resembles brown rice, and is packed with fiber, protein, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Popular in Italy, this healthy dish is gaining favor in the U.S. for its versatility and health benefits.

You may be familiar with rice, quinoa and barley, but farro is another option to consider.

“It is a grain with nutty flavor, and it’s popular in the Mediterranean type of cuisine,” says Anya Guy, a Mayo Clinic dietitian. The dense ancient grain is rich in nutrition with a plethora of health benefits.

“Farro is a great source of fiber, iron, protein and magnesium. With all of those nutrients in this little grain, it can provide a lot of health benefits for your diabetes or for heart health or for brain health.”

Cook farro on the stovetop, in a slower cooker or in the oven. It doesn’t expand as much as rice or pasta.

“You can use the cooked farro in an added recipe, whether it’s risotto or cereal, hot cereal, in soups or in stews, or even on top of a salad.”

One serving provides about 200 calories, 7 grams of protein and 7 grams of fiber.

“The fiber content in farro is really important because it improves digestive health,” says Guy.

An added bonus? “It also can improve satiety that may lead to less weight gain or even some weight loss.”


The Scoop on Superfoods