Move over quinoa! There’s a new grain in town. Farro takes the world by storm in this cheesy farro and cauliflower risotto that gives comfort food a whole grain makeover.
cheesy cauliflower and farro risotto

I will scream to the high heavens about the benefits of eating the rainbow, but put me in a corner with a bowl of this cauliflower farro risotto, which is fifty shades of sepia, and I will

You should probably avert your eyes.

It will not be pretty.


In my defense – all beige food is not created equal.

Farro is the new quinoa, cauliflower is the new kale. We’re basically eating a big bowl of nutritional gold.

Hipster nutritional gold, but nutritional gold nonetheless.

I’m so proud of our life choices.

Now join me in the corner because things are about to get crazytown.


I’m of the opinion that you can turn any grain into risotto if you set your mind to it, and this is definitely true for farro. I find it’s a little bit more forgiving than rice (and way more chewy-licious!), so feel free to stir at your leisure rather than everysecondorelse.  Your biceps will thank me.

Cheesy Farro and Cauliflower Risotto
Move over quinoa! There's a new grain in town. Farro takes the world by storm in this cheesy farro and cauliflower risotto that gives comfort food a whole grain makeover.
Yield: 6 servings
  • 1 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
  • cooking spray
  • salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 2 cups farro
  • 6 cups vegetable broth, plus more if needed
  • 8 oz fontina, grated
  1. Heat oven to 450F.
  2. Spread the cauliflower out in a single layer on a large parchment-lined baking sheet. Spray with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt and black pepper. Roast for 20-25 minutes or until browned and crispy, tossing once halfway through.
  3. Set aside.
  4. In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Stir in the shallot and saute for 3-4 minutes, or until translucent, seasoning with a pinch of salt. Stir in the farro and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add 1-2 cups of broth to the pot, enough to just cover the farro. Lower the heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring frequently, until most of the water has evaporated. Add the remaining broth 1 cup at a time, only adding more when the previous batch has just evaporated, stirring frequently, until farro is tender. Stir in the cauliflower and cheese. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. Serve warm.
An Eats Well With Others Original
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 bowl

 For more risotto inspiration, check out these:

barley risotto with butternut squash and gruyere

Barley Risotto with Butternut Squash and Gruyere

barley risotto with roasted brussels sprouts, apples and champagne honey mustard

Barley Risotto with Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Apples and Champagne Honey Mustard

risotto with carrots and feta

Risotto with Carrots and Feta

From Around the Web:

Apple Kale Risotto with Parmesan Crisps from Lauren Kelly Nutrition

Barley Risotto with Mushrooms and Spinach from The Law Student’s Wife

Broccoli Cheddar Risotto from Prevention RD

Braised Kale with Black Quinoa and Risotto from Seven Spoons

Meyer Lemon Risotto from Simply Recipes


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53 Responses to Cheesy Farro and Cauliflower Risotto

  1. Sune Moolman says:

    I’ve never had farro, but it looks delicious with the cauliflower and, well, cheese. Everything is better with cheese!

  2. I am slow on the uptake with farro, but this makes me want to get busy with it 🙂

  3. I am a BIG fan of farro too. I like it with olive oil, lemon juice, sundried tomatoes and feta. So good!

  4. Hipster nutritional gold .. oh my gawd, love it!! I would be skipping from the rooftops. . dude, this seriously looks so good. and you’re right about farro and cauliflower. . damn time someone said it! 🙂 and fontina cheese. . oh baby. . can’t wait to try this. I seriously have farro in my pantry now!

  5. Megan says:

    I love farro risotto. I am so making this!

  6. ‘Kay, you’ve convinced me to give farro a chance. Combined with cauli and all that cheesy goodness I don’t know HOW anyone could resist it!! Looks fabulous Joanne!

  7. bellini says:

    Any rain can turn into risotto, I agree, and would benefit from the energy boost.

  8. Amanda says:

    This looks absolutely delicious! YUM!!!

  9. oh girl you have SO many delicious Risotto recipes here, I must give it a go. I think Risotto is such a nice dish to have during the cold months, with a great glas of wine =) This farro Risotto would be a great idea for the weekend!

  10. I never make farro, but lately I’ve been passing it in the store and it’s been calling me. Cauliflower always calls my name…so may just have to put the two together. Love the simplicity of this, looks so good!

  11. Love farro! Perfect creamy comfort food!

  12. I love farro (it’s called Emmer over here) and use it very often in my grain salads. Have to try your risotto soon. It looks very inviting!

  13. For the longest time, it’s been so hard to find farro at my local grocery store. I love these new food revolutions because it’s suddenly become so easy to eat my favorite foods. I am all over this cheesy risotto!!

  14. cheri says:

    Hi Joanne, I would be in the corner too, looks delicious!

  15. I LOVE farro! And risotto. And cheese. Quinoa is good and all, but this takes the cake.

  16. Kinsey says:

    Yum! I adore cauliflower and faro together and adding a ton of fontina sounds like the right way to do farrotto! Now that I’m actually experiencing real cold weather, I would love to warm up with a bowl of this.

  17. dawn says:

    I’m gonna try this… I love risotto, cauliflower, cheese and farro… looking forward to playing with it as far as different cheeses, and flavor additives also… but I always try a recipe as is first… and go from there.. Thank you for posting this

  18. I really like the texture of Farro and right now anything cheesy is my BFF. Want!

  19. I am so okay with farro being the new quinoa for awhile… I love it! This is like cauliflower with cheese sauce, but better!! Delicious! : )

  20. I absolutely LOVE farro risotto. This looks amazing!

  21. Yum – I am a huge fan of farro – just that much more substantial and quinoa, which I need sometimes 🙂

  22. HaaHaaa, an ancient grain is new in town huh? 😉 I love farro but often forget it’s in my pantry. Thanks for sharing!

  23. Oh, I do love farro as a risotto and in salad and as a side and, and… I could go a bowl of this right now and it’s only breakfast time!

  24. Salivating as always when I visit your blog! Farro is my favorite whole grain and don’t even get me started on cauliflower and cheese for goodness sake. Definitely making this!

  25. Beth says:

    This looks divine, Joanne. I’d love to try it!

  26. This would be a very comforting meal for all the cold weather we are having here in New England.

  27. Mira says:

    I like farro, but rarely make it. This one looks amazing, can’t wait to try it ! Looks delicious!

  28. Are You Kidding Me??!! Yes, I’m yelling! This looks soooo good! Thank you!

  29. Kelly says:

    I love that you made farro risotto! I would totally go to town on a bowl of this too. The nutty farro sounds perfect with the creamy cauliflower and fontina! Looks super comforting and delicious!

  30. I think you know already that I’m a sucker for cheese, and I love that it’s slathered over all this farro and cauliflower! It’s funny, I was just wondering what to cook with cauliflower…Thanks girl for the inspiration!

  31. That looks really good. I’ve been buying a lot of cauliflower lately, and I think the hubs and kids are getting tired of my roasted Indian cauliflower.

    And I gave up bread/ wheat for November, but I could make this with brown rice or barley.

  32. Julie says:

    And…now I’m totally craving cheesy cauliflower!

  33. Eileen says:

    Yay, cauliflower! And I’m not just saying that because I have half a head of cauli and half a head of romanesco in the fridge right now, and will have another head of cauli once I go get the CSA box tonight. 🙂 So good, especially with hearty grains and plenty of cheese.

  34. Beautiful dish. I love farro and it is always so perfect cooked this way. Delicious Joanne as usual

  35. Johanna GGG says:

    nutritional gold sounds good to me – I love cauliflower but am yet to discover farro – though I was tempted in a shop the other day

  36. It’s like comfort food, nutritionally dense and healthy decided to have a threesome and made a baby! I love this!

  37. Roz says:

    I could devour each and every one of your risotto recipes and like you, just love the faro replacement for that great crunch! Happy Thanksgiving!

  38. I tried a farro salad at Cheesecake Factory not long ago and been wanting to replicate it ever since. It reminds me of rice/pasta in one. Love the simplicity of this recipe! Never tried fontina either. On my to do list 🙂

  39. Reeni says:

    Fontina wrapped around cauliflower and farro? Yes, please! It sounds extremely delicious and super comforting. I’ll be the first to join you in the corner.

  40. I really have to find farro Joanne as it sounds like the perfect grain for a change 🙂

  41. Hotly Spiced says:

    I’ll push my quinoa to the back of the pantry to make room for this new grain, farro. I have seen a lot of farro recipes around the traps but haven’t cooked with it yet. Must correct that! This is a great looking ‘risotto’ xx

  42. elmundooo says:

    Love the dishes …..they look so yummy <3

  43. I’m a firm believer that beige food is the best food (bread, hello ;)). I want to live in this dish!

  44. Oh man, friend! Such a yummy looking dinner!

  45. Kate says:

    I tend to think of farro as more like pasta, and quinoa as more like a bean (just in terms of nutritional content)

  46. We eat farro all the time at my house. Thanks for a new take on an old favorite. I’m eager to try it!

  47. Oh my goodness yum. I can’t even express how much I want to eat this right now!

  48. Nicola says:

    I love farro so much and have been dreaming of making a risotto out of it. You’ve inspired me!

  49. I am head over heels in love with farro these days, and the idea of risotto-izing it is genius. (As usual coming from you.) 🙂

  50. I never got on the kale bandwagon (don’t hate), but cauliflower and I are like BFFs. Nature’s candy!

  51. sandra says:

    wow that looks so good – we are in need of new farro recipes – the stuff is so tasty and so quick to cook – an essential necessity these days!!

  52. YUMMY idea for a risotto! Love the cauliflower in this one!

  53. […] Un risotto à l’épeautre, ça vous dit? […]

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