What is Farro & is Farro Gluten Free? | Bob's Red Mill
What Is It? Wednesday: Farro
Healthy Living on June 11, 2014 by

What Is It? Wednesday: Farro

While farro is not gluten free, it’s a delicious grain to add to a salad, soup, and can be a great substitute for other grains such as pasta. Learn more about farro and the different ways you can use it!

What Is Farro?

Farro is a general Italian term for wheat. This includes the ancient wheat varieties of Spelt, Einkorn, and Emmer. In the food world, if you order farro, you could be getting any variation on those three grains: from a whole grain kernel to something that has been pearled. At Bob's Red Mill, our farro is made from spelt that has been lightly scored.

Is Farro a Whole Grain?

Our farro, like many in the market, is not technically a whole grain. It has been lightly scored to facilitate the release of starches when cooking. Only the smallest amount of bran is removed in this process, but any loss prevents it from being classified as whole grain. When cooked, the kernel almost pops open and releases starch. This makes a perfect ingredient for dishes like risotto (often called farrotto when using farro) where you want the grain to soften over time and create a creamy dish.

FarroHOA2

Is Farro Gluten Free?

No, farro is not gluten free. Regardless of which variety of wheat farro is made from, they all contain gluten.

How Do You Use Farro?

Farro can be used in a variety of ways, from sweet to savory. At its most basic, farro can make a lovely addition to soups, salads, and pilafs, but there are many recipes available that take farro above and beyond the basic.

Substitutions for Farro

Farro is very versatile and can be replaced in most recipes with spelt berries, wheat berries, and Kamut® berries. If you want a gluten free substitute, sorghum, brown rice, or oat groats will all make good replacements in most recipes. When replacing farro, keep in mind what the cooking times and applications. For instance, replacing farro in a cold grain salad is simple: almost any grain will work in place of another for this kind of dish. If, however, you're adding uncooked farro to a soup, you'll want to account for the different cooking times of the grain you plan to use instead.

Farrotto | Bob's Red Mill

Our Favorite Ways to Enjoy Farro:

17 Comments

  1. Karen Salstrom
    Hi, Bob
    I am of Italian descent and have recently had to go gluten free. One thing I missed at Christmas time was something we called Cuccia. It is soaked and cooked wheat berries, combined with garbanzo beans olive oil and salt. It's a sicilian dish for st. Lucy day. What would be an appropriate gluten free grain substitute for wheat berries in this dish? Or should I just use something like cream of rice and settle for it? Thanks for any help you can give.
    Reply
    1. Cassidy Stockton
      Brown Rice would work great here, as would sorghum grain. Sorghum is very chewy and would be similar to wheat berries in texture.
      Reply
  2. Rose Mary Futrell
    Do you have a newsletter? Thanks
    Reply
    1. Cassidy Stockton
      Yes, you can subscribe here: http://www.bobsredmill.com/newsletter-signup.html
      Reply
  3. Bridget
    It’s really disappointing that the packaging of this product does not indicate that it has been scored. The whole point of me paying premium prices for this grain was to up my insoluble fiber intake. Won’t buy for you again ☹️
    Reply
  4. Jessica Schabtach
    Jessica Schabtach
    It would be helpful if the packaging for Bob's Red Mill "Organic Farro" were more specific. When I was looking at it at the store, I thought I was buying emmer wheat, which was what I wanted; only now have I learned that what I purchased was spelt, since nowhere on the package does it specify the precise type of grain.
    Reply
  5. Jeanne Arbuckle
    Jeanne Arbuckle
    I agree it is frustrating that the type of wheat was not specified on the package and also that it had been scored. I spent lots of time trying to determine which type of wheat and whether it is a whole grain. It's also frustrating that the package seam overlaps some of the cooking instructions, making them difficult to read. I am searching for ways to cook it that don't heat up the kitchen too much, and this information might help me guess at an acceptable cooking time.
    Reply
    1. Whitney Barnes
      Whitney Barnes
      Hi Jeanne, thanks for your feedback. We're continuously striving to improve our packages and will pass along your thoughts to our team here.
      Reply
  6. Maryann Ratchford
    Maryann Ratchford
    Wow it is so great that you explain what farro is and that it is not gluten free! I have to eat gluten free so this was a very helpful explanation. It is great that you answer our questions about your foods.
    Reply
  7. David
    Can this be ground to make spelt flour?
    Reply
    1. Whitney Barnes
      Hi David - yes! We also have Spelt Flour available on our website.
      Reply
  8. dawson
    The recipe I want to try calls for "semi pearled" farro - and it is my understanding that Bob's farro is pearled? Am I correct in this assumption and would I be able to use your pearled farro in a recipe that calls for semi pearled? would that change cooking times in any way?

    thanks for doing what you do, I am crazy about your oatmeal, please guide me over the farro bridge so I can be crazy about that as well:)
    Reply
    1. Whitney Barnes
      Whitney Barnes
      Hi Dawson - Our Farro is pearled. The grains are very lightly scratched, as is traditional, to allow for a faster cooking time and to encourage the release of their starches during cooking. On the stovetop it takes about 30 minutes to cook and should be an easy substitution in your recipe. Enjoy!
      Reply
  9. debbie stack
    would love to get newsletter I buy Bob's Red Mill products all the time for the health benefits I'm 65 going on 45 ☺
    Reply
    1. Whitney Barnes
      Hi Debbie! Sign up for our newsletter here: https://www.bobsredmill.com/newsletter-signup.html
      Reply
  10. Heidi Maso
    pls add me to your news letter
    Reply
    1. Whitney Barnes
      Hi Heidi! You can sign up by clicking here: Join Our Newsletter
      Reply

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