Farro Salad with Grilled Asparagus

Make this beautiful grilled asparagus recipe for your next cookout! With pea shoots, radishes & lemon thyme dressing, it's practically spring on a plate.

Farro Salad with Grilled Asparagus

Welcome to grilling week! This week, each of the 3 recipes I’m going to post will all involve the grill. The sun is finally shining and we’re getting ready for Memorial Day weekend, so what better time to cook outside? Of course if you don’t have an outdoor grill, you can always use a cast iron grill pan on the stove top.

We’re starting this series with one of my favorite things to grill – asparagus! The key to great grilled asparagus is finding really fresh thin spears of asparagus. I like fat spears for ribboning, but thin spears are best for grilling because they’re more tender, crisp, and delicious with a quick char.

Farro Salad with Grilled Asparagus

How to Grill Asparagus

If you’ve never grilled asparagus before, you’re going to love it! The spears come out tender and lightly charred, and the process is really simple:

  1. Start by trimming any woody ends off the asparagus spears – you don’t want to end up eating one by mistake!
  2. Then, lightly toss the asparagus with olive oil, salt, and pepper.
  3. Grill for 6 to 8 minutes on a grill preheated to medium, flipping halfway through.
  4. Your asparagus is ready when it’s tender and lightly charred. Remove from the grill and assemble the salad!

Grilled Asparagus Lemon-Thyme Farro Salad

This recipe is easy if you prep everything before you start grilling: cook the farro, make the tangy thyme dressing, chop the pistachios, crumble the cheese… When you’re ready to serve the salad, grill the asparagus, grill the lemons, and assemble!

Grilled Asparagus Lemon-Thyme Farro Salad

I love this colorful salad for spring! 💛

It has a nutty flavor from the farro and pistachios and a tangy bite from the quick pickled radishes. These form the perfect base for the grilled asparagus. Top it all off with a squeeze of the juicy grilled lemon.

I should mention that I got these delicate pea shoots from the farmers market this weekend. Pea shoots have a short season – if you can’t find them, top your salad with a few micro greens. Soft herbs like basil, mint, and/or tarragon would be also delicious.

Grilled Asparagus Lemon-Thyme Farro Salad

If you love this grilled asparagus salad…

Try grilling avocados, or use more asparagus in this spring salad, a breakfast casserole, or a frittata.

5.0 from 3 reviews

Farro Salad with Grilled Asparagus

Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This bright grilled asparagus salad is the perfect side for a spring cookout. Prep the other ingredients ahead of time, toss the asparagus on the grill, and you'll have a beautiful salad in no time.
Recipe type: Salad, side dish
Serves: 4 as a side
  • 1 cup uncooked farro (about 2 cups cooked)
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • 1 bunch asparagus, tender parts
  • 1 lemon, halved
  • ½ cup frozen edamame, thawed
  • 2 tablespoons crumbled ricotta salata or feta, optional
  • 2 teaspoons capers
  • 2 radishes, sliced raw or quick pickled*
  • handful of pea shoots or micro greens, chopped
  • ¼ cup chopped pistachios
dressing: (you may have extra)
  • 2 tablespoons Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  • ¼ teaspoon pure maple syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons water
  1. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil and cook the farro and until tender but not mushy, 15 to 25 minutes, depending on the farro. (They vary, so check the packaging for a more specific time range). Drain and spread on a plate to dry and drizzle with a tiny bit of olive oil to keep it from sticking. Chill until ready to use. The farro can be made ahead.
  2. Make the dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, white wine vinegar, mustard, thyme leaves, maple syrup, salt, several grinds of pepper, and the water. Set aside.
  3. Prep all salad ingredients before grilling the asparagus. Toss the farro with half of the dressing and a pinch of salt and set aside.
  4. Preheat the grill to medium. Drizzle the asparagus and lemon halves lightly with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Grill for 6 to 8 minutes, or until charred but still bright green, flipping or rolling once. Grill the lemons cut-side down without flipping.
  5. Remove the asparagus and lemons from the grill. Assemble the salad with the dressed farro, the asparagus, edamame, cheese, capers, radishes, pea shoots, and pistachios. Drizzle with more dressing, as desired, and squeeze the grilled lemon over the salad. Season with more salt and pepper, as desired.
*to quick pickle the radishes, place them in a jar and cover them with a combination of rice vinegar, white wine vinegar, a splash of water, a pinch of salt and a pinch of sugar. Shake and chill until ready to use.

Grilling tray pictured in photo #2 is the Falcon Enamelware Serving Tray in Pigeon Grey.


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Rate this recipe (after making it):  

  1. Margaret

    I have made this countless times. It is my absolute favorite fancy-but-not-time-consuming recipe! I bought a few packs of TJs frozen edamame to keep on hand just for this. I actually never have radish, pistachio, or microgreens to add, but even without these I find the recipe to be perfect! My entire family loves it!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Margaret, I’m so glad you’ve enjoyed it so much!

  2. Sandy from 4carpetcleaning.com

    Asparagus is one of my favorites

  3. I’m really working on getting more veggies into my daily diet and asparagus is coming available again so this looks like a great recipe to prepare!

  4. Sabrina from newkitchenlife.com

    really lovely and substantial salad without hordes of lettuce! Love these ingredients, especially together, thank you for this recipe

  5. Sandra

    Absolutely delicious salad and very light Summer food. I added crumbled feta on top which gives it the ultimate twist. Compliments for the dressing that is so yummy!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Sandra, I’m so glad you loved it!

    • Kathy

      It’s so nice to see a comment from someone who actually made this recipe. Thank you!

  6. Nutrition Stripped

    Can’t wait to try this one! It looks amazing 🙂

  7. Brittany Audra @ Audra's Appetite

    Been having a moment with farro recently, so this recipe is perfect! 🙂

  8. Gaby Dalkin

    This recipe just got me SO excited for grilling season!

  9. Tuere

    This looks delicious! Is there a substitute for asparagus that you recommend? I love the look of them and their diuretic effect, yet the taste isn’t one of my favorites.

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Tuere, I’d do grilled broccolini, slice it in half vertically of the ends are thick. They might need to grill a tad longer than the asparagus, but it would be delicious here with no other changes. Green beans would be delicious as well.

  10. Susan

    This salad sounds absolutely spectacular. Looking forward to trying it.

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.