Farro is an ancient whole grain that tastes nutty and resembles a plumper version of barley. It has a relatively short cooking time—about 30 minutes when prepared like rice—and a long shelf life (six months in the pantry and 12 months if frozen). It’s higher in both fiber and protein than pasta, and is a powerful source of complex carbohydrates, which is why it’s embraced by athletes. “It works
well in place of rice in risotto,” says Chazin, “and it’s great when added to soups that call for pasta or rice.” It’s a versatile grain, so you can toss it in salads, serve it as a side dish with peas and chopped pancetta, or make porridge with maple syrup, cinnamon, and almond milk.