Mushroom Farro Risotto Recipe
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Add some ancient grains to your Thanksgiving menu with this Mushroom Farro Risotto recipe. Simmered in white wine, with two types of mushrooms, this dish is tastebud perfection. Great for dinner by itself, or as a side dish for countless main courses.
This Vegan Mushroom Farro Risotto aka “Risotto di Farro ai Funghi”, is pure heaven in a bowl. A comfort food dish that’s loaded with all the best nutrients your body begs for. If you love these kinds of sides or main dishes, you would also love my Coconut Spinach Rice Pilaf or Wild Rice Pilaf. Farro isn’t rice though, so I urge you to give it a try because it’s on a plane all of its own.
What is Farro Risotto?
Risotto is commonly an Italian dish that’s largely made of rice. It’s usually cooked to a creamy perfection using broth. Some other popularly used ingredients for this recipe are onion, fresh herbs, vegetables, etc. However in this version the farro grain replaces the rice as the main ingredient. It’s then made in a very similar manner as any traditional risotto.
How to Make Mushroom Farro Risotto
- Prep – Soak the dried mushrooms in hot water for 20 minutes. Remove from water and chop. Chop the leek and rinse well in water for a couple of minutes before transferring them to a towel to be dried.
- Saute and toast – Heat a heavy-bottomed pot with olive oil and saute half of the leek until caramelized. Add the farro and toast for a couple of minutes before adding the white wine. Stir until almost dry. Add in cranberries now, if desired.
- Simmer – Add the stock, soaked mushrooms, and bay leaf. Simmer for 45 minutes or until the broth has been absorbed. Add a bit of oil and nutritional yeast. Stir well.
- Saute again – In another pan, heat some olive oil and saute the remaining leek until caramelized. Add the wild mushrooms to the pan and turn up the heat a touch.
- Assemble – Spoon the farro into bowls and top with the sauteed leek mixture, extra cranberries, and parsley. Enjoy!
FAQs, Tips + Variations
- Storage and freezing – Store in a sealed container, in the fridge, for up to 4 days. Store in an airtight container, in the freezer, for up to 2 months.
- Reheating – Reheat in the microwave after adding a touch of stock or water. You can also reheat in a pan over the stove, but add that bit of liquid so it doesn’t dry out.
- Where to buy farro? – Farro is easily found at most grocery stores especially health food stores. It’s usually down the grain aisle with the rice. Sometimes it will also be placed in the baking aisle, bulk aisle, or pasta aisle. I love to buy it in bulk so I order this organic Italian farro from amazon.
- Is farro healthy? – Farro grains are packed with nutrients. In fact, it’s great for those with diabetes and aids in brain health. It contains three times the amount of fiber than rice, but contains about the same amount of calories. It’s also made up of complex carbs rather than simple carbs, which is always better.
- Add-in ideas – Some tasty add-in ideas for this dish are roasted butternut squash and kale, asparagus, sweet corn and roasted tomatoes, roasted broccoli, sautéed spinach, green peas, roasted beets and sweet potato cubes, roasted carrots, zucchini, grilled radicchio, vegan feta crumbles, vegan Italian sausage, etc.
- Why are there cranberries? – Cranberries might seem like an odd addition, but they’re really perfect because they bring a little sweetness and balance to the nuttiness and earthiness of the dish. They also make it festive and perfect for the holiday table. They’re totally optional, but I strongly recommend them.
- Is Farro a Rice? Although it can look similar to rice, it’s not considered a rice, but an ancient grain. It’s referred to as “the mother of all wheat.” Farro is more specifically hulled wheat so therefor it’s not gluten-free. It’s mistaken for rice quite often because it looks like a tanner form of rice. The most ancient forms of farro are the Einkorn and emmer types. Farro is usually only sold under the name “farro” and not wheat or other specific types. So, be aware that it won’t directly say wheat.
What to Serve with Mushroom Farro Risotto?
If you’re using it as a main meal, a nice salad like grandpa’s Italian Tomato Salad would be super delicious. You could even serve a bread on the side like Focaccia Bread, Potato Flatbread or Crusty Vegan Bread. If you’re using it as a side dish, my Vegan Steak, Baked Tofu Parmesan, or this Vegan Holiday Roast are the perfect pairings.
Favorite Side Dishes:
- Vegan Biscuits
- Vegan Roasted Cauliflower Steaks
- Garlic Rosemary Roasted Potatoes
- Scalloped Potatoes
- Rustic Paprika Potatoes
P.S. As always if you make this recipe please report back with a comment rating below, snap a photo and tag me with #VeggieSociety on Instagram, it always brightens up my day ~ Florentina Xo’s
Mushroom Farro Risotto ~ Vegan
- 1.5 cups farro
- 1/3 cup dry white wine
- 1 lb wild mushrooms
- 1 large leek
- 5 cups hot water
- 1/2 cup dried porcini mushrooms (or 1 tbsp porcini powder)
- 1/2 cup dry cranberries optional
- 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
- Soak the dried mushrooms in the hot water for 20 minutes then remove the mushrooms and chop them up.
- Slice or chop the leek to your liking and rinse well in a bowl of cold water. Allow all the dirt/ grit to fall to the bottom of the bowl for a few minutes then use your hands to scoop all the leeks and transfer to a tea towel to dry off. Divide in half.
- Preheat a heavy bottom pot over medium heat with a lug of olive oil (or a splash of veggie stock for WFPB + Plantricious compliance). Add half of the chopped leeks and saute until wilted and they begin to caramelize. Stir in the farro and toast for a couple of minutes then hit it with the white wine. Stir until absorbed and almost dry. (Add half of the cranberries at this point if using).
- Add the mushroom stock and chopped up rehydrated mushrooms together with the bay leaf. Stir well, bring to a simmer and cover with a lid. Simmer for a good 45 minutes stirring often until almost all of the broth has been absorbed and the farro is cooked through but still with an al dente texture.
- Optional: Stir in the nutritional yeast and add a drizzle of olive oil or vegan butter for extra creaminess.
- Meanwhile preheat another skillet with a lug of olive oil or veggie stock and saute the remaining of the leeks with a pinch of sea salt. Once they start to get some color add in the fresh wild mushrooms and toss to coat well. Add more olive oil if needed and turn up the heat to get some color on the mushrooms.
- Spoon the farro risotto into bowl and top with the sautéed mushrooms, fresh parsley and garnish with the remaining the cranberries if using.
WFPB + Plantricious
- To make this recipe WFPB + Plantricious compliant make sure to omit all the oil / vegan butter and saute the leeks and mushrooms in water or veggie broth instead.
- Is Farro a Rice? Although it can look similar to rice, it’s not considered a rice, but an ancient grain so therefor not gluten-free. It’s referred to as “the mother of all wheat.” Farro is more specifically hulled wheat. It’s mistaken for rice quite often because it looks like a tanner form of rice. The most ancient forms of farro are the Einkorn and emmer types. Farro is usually only sold under the name “farro” and not wheat or other specific types. So, be aware that it won’t directly say wheat.
- Add-in ideas - Some tasty add-in ideas for this dish are roasted butternut squash and kale, asparagus, sweet corn and roasted tomatoes, roasted broccoli, sautéed spinach, green peas, roasted beets, roasted carrots, zucchini, grilled radicchio, vegan feta crumbles, vegan Italian sausage, etc.
- Why are there cranberries? - Cranberries might seem like an odd addition, but they’re really perfect because they bring a little sweetness and balance to the nuttiness and earthiness of the dish. They also make it festive and perfect for the holiday table. They’re totally optional, but I recommend them.
Good morning! I love this recipe but I cannot find wild mushrooms where I live. The recipe calls for 1 pound of them but Amazon sells a 1 pound bag of dried wild mushrooms for $117.00 — any suggestions? What weight of dried mushrooms would achieve the required amount in this recipe after re-hydration? Thank you.
Hey Bob, you’ll need one pound of fresh mushrooms not dried, the flavor will already be there from the wild mushroom broth so you can replace the fresh wild mushrooms with whatever fresh mushrooms are available at your local market. Costco usually gets beautiful chanterelles this time of the year and they would be fabulous here, otherwise any shiitakes or even sliced up baby bellas will be fine.
Made this for dinner w/ our two neighbors in our bubble, one who is vegan and everyone loved it. I have to mention I’m surprised you only have one mention of any salt or seasoning other than nutritional yeast. I used that but it still needed salt and pepper, and I think next time I’d use at least a teaspoon of dried thyme in the sautéed mushrooms and onions. Would also add one or two cloves of garlic as well for a fuller flavor, but those are just our preferences.
I’m so happy you guys loved the risotto. I love thyme + mushrooms myself but it can have a strong flavor I didn’t want in this dish.I specifically wanted the earthy mushroom flavor to come through in a very clean way, let me know if you try it with the thyme next time and which version you prefer. You are correct about the salt, I allow each cook to adjust seasonings to taste with salt at the end of cooking, hopefully this way we all end up using less of it ~ Florentina
This is a really lovely impressive meal. I wanted to give it a try before the big Thanksgiving dinner to make sure it’s a go and so happy I did. I will for sure make it for guests which I already know love mushrooms. Thank you for the recipe!