Can we talk about big ass salads today?

Mediterranean Chicken and Farro Salad | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

Because salads and I are having a moment. Maybe it’s the anticipation of the upcoming summer season that makes me crave a giant bowl full of so many flavors and so many veggies. Whatever the reason, I am really into BIG ass salads right now.

And please excuse my language. I just feel there’s no better way to describe a really great salad, especially one like this Mediterranean Chicken and Farro Salad. Plus, if you know me in real life, you know that I am no stranger to profanity and tend to let the obscenities fly…ooops. You wouldn’t guess it by looking at me. While I may look like I am sixteen or seventeen (possibly due to wearing very minimal make-up), and maybe even kind of innocent… trust me, hang out with me for an hour or so and I might just shock you. I guess that’s what happens when you grow up in a house full of boys.

My point is that I am really excited about big salads right now. But not like salads with lettuce and cucumbers. Nope, salads of the hearty, super filling kind. Think grain salads, loaded veggie salads, pasta salads and salads full of fruits (fruity salads are my favorite)!

Mediterranean Chicken and Farro Salad | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

This farro salad is actually inspired by a recipe I have in my cookbook. Yes, THAT cookbook!! Guys, guess what?!?! I’m getting SOO close to being done with the recipes and all of the recipe testing. Like it’s almost sad, but yet still exiting. Sad and scary because it’s kind of like a chapter of the booking is being closed forever and ever. I will not be able to mess with anymore recipes, change anything around or swap in any new ones. Pretty soon that part of the book will be DONE… for good! YIKES!

It is exciting because I am almost one step closer to being done. Which means one step closer to finally sharing it with you guys! Ahh!! Again, exciting and scary! I still have probably two more weeks left of testing, but hoping to finish up sooner rather than later, cause ahh, deadlines are looming!!

ANYWAY, I have a farro recipe in the book and as I was testing…and testing… that recipe, I realized that I have ZERO farro recipes on the blog. Everything is all about quinoa, quinoa, quinoa. But I mean, hey there, there are other grains out there too!

Farro being one of them!!

If you guys have never had farro, it’s really good and a lot like rice, but with a little more of a crunch. It’s super hearty and works great in this chicken salad.

Mediterranean Chicken and Farro Salad | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

Soo, there are a few key players that make up this salad.

One: the mediterranean seasoned grilled chicken. This is just so GOOD. Like a really good, really simple chicken. It’s awesome on it own with a side of pasta or rice, but even better when tossed into a hearty salad like I did here. Either way though, you should keep this chicken recipe in your back pocket for all these upcoming hot summer nights. It’s so good with pretty much anything.

Two: the farro, the veggies and the cheese, duh, duh and duh. The farro adds texture, flavor, crunch and heartiness. The veggies, which include tomatoes, artichokes, olives (which I guess are technically a fruit) and pepperoncini are what really add such great flavors. The mozzarella? Well I mean, come on, do I really need to explain that? You know me, all the cheese please! Feta would be delish too! OH and there are cannelini beans as well! YUM!

Three: the roasted red pepper sauce. OH MY GOSH. This is my new favorite sauce to put on everything from meats, to seafood, to pastas, to salads. It’s SO good and so simple. Just add everything to a blender and blend until smooth…then eat and eat and eat. It’s equally delish as a dip alongside some pita chips! 🙂

And those are your key players. Simple right?

Mediterranean Chicken and Farro Salad | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

I have to say, I am super exited about this salad. I feel like it’s kind of new and exciting, but not overly so. It includes flavors we all know and love, but is still kind of different because of that farro…oh, and that roasted red pepper sauce that I just cannot get enough of. 🙂

Don’t get me wrong, I love quinoa, and I’m sure there will be another quinoa recipe soon, but sometimes it can be fun to switch it up a bit!! What do you guys think? Are you game??

Last thing, and I know I say this A LOT, but don’t skimp on the cheese. It’s my favorite, and a must in pretty much all salads. You gotta have cheese. Mmmm, k?

Trust me…cheese for the win. Always and always. 🙂

Mediterranean Chicken and Farro Salad | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest
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3.45 from 9 votes
The Recipe

Mediterranean Chicken and Farro Salad.

By halfbakedharvest

Course: Main Course, Salad
Cuisine: American, Mediterranean
Keyword: chicken, farro

A BIG, tasty salad

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 6 Servings
Calories 388 kcal

Ingredients

Chicken

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic minced or grated
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chopped oregano
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • juice of 2 lemons
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breast or tenders

Salad

  • 1 cup dry farro
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes halved
  • 1/2 cup kalamata olives pitted
  • 1/4 cup pepperoncini chopped
  • 1 ounce can cannelini beans drained + rinsed, 14
  • 1 ounce jar marinated artichokes drained, 8
  • 8 ounces fresh mozzarella torn OR bocconcini (mozz balls)

Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

  • 1 ounce jar roasted red peppers 16, or 2 roasted red peppers
  • 1/2 cup oil packed sun-dried tomatoes
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup toasted almonds or pine nuts

Instructions

  1. In a large gallon size zip-top bag, combine the ingredients for the chicken and toss to combine. Seal and chill at least 1 hour or up to 12 hours.
  2. Meanwhile, cook the farro according to package directions and then add the cooked farro to a large bowl. Add the cherry tomatoes, olives, pepperoncini, cannelini beans, artichokes and mozzarella. Gently toss to combine. Add a spoonful or two of the roasted red pepper sauce and toss.
  3. Set your grill, grill pan or skillet to medium-high heat.
  4. Grill the chicken until lightly charred and cooked through, turning occasionally throughout cooking, about 10 to 12 minutes total. Transfer to a cutting board and allow to rest 5 minutes, then slice into thin strips against the grain. Add the chicken to the farro and serve with the remaining roasted red pepper sauce (see below). Garnish the salad with a large handful of arugula. Serve.

Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

  1. Combine all the ingredients in a blender or food processor. Add 3 tablespoons of the oil from the sun-dried tomato jar and then pulse to combine until the sauce is mostly smooth. Store in a glass jar in the fridge for up to one week.
Mediterranean Chicken and Farro Salad | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest

Now bring on the salads…

Mediterranean Chicken and Farro Salad | halfbakedharvest.com @hbharvest