This healthy and hearty tuscan farro soup with white beans and kale is the perfect nourishing yet comforting winter meal! Made in one pot and ready in just 30 minutes, it's a great option for meal prep or a quick & easy weeknight dinner.
Disclosure: This recipe is sponsored by Roland Foods, a leading global importer of premium, high-quality ingredients. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Pinch of Parsley possible!
Inspired by zuppa di farro from Tuscany, this healthy soup is one of my favorites to whip up because it's loaded with veggies, can feed a crowd and is freezer friendly.
Why you'll love this recipe
- It's the perfect comfort food! If you need something warm and cozy on a cold day, this soup is the perfect choice.
- It's healthy, hearty & filling! This soup is packed with plant-based protein, complex carbs, healthy fats, veggies and fiber. Plus, it's naturally dairy-free and vegan, and can easily be made gluten-free, if needed.
- This soup is quick & easy to make. You only need one pot, simple ingredients and 30 minutes of cooking time!
- It's make-ahead and freezer friendly! Go ahead and meal prep this tuscan farro soup so you can have it for lunch or dinner throughout the busy work week. You can also freeze it to readily have on hand for another time.
This one pot recipe requires basic kitchen tools that you definitely already have on hand:
- Large pot or 5-quart dutch oven
- Mesh sieve or strainer: to rinse the farro prior to cooking
- Wooden spoon: for sauteing the vegetables and stirring the soup
- Ladle: for transferring the soup from pot to bowl
What is farro?
Farro is a hearty ancient grain that dates back to ancient Egypt and is now commonly used in Italian and Mediterranean cuisines. It's an unhybridized form of wheat that has a firm, chewy texture and offers a delicious nutty, earthy flavor. It's packed with 7 grams of fiber and 7 grams of protein per serving while also being rich in antioxidants, as well as vitamins and minerals such as iron, magnesium and zinc. Farro can refer to any of the following three nutrient-dense whole grains: einkorn, emmer, and spelt. It's great in soups, salads, grain bowls and more!
Pearled farro, which is what we're using for this soup, is the most common type of farro you can find in your local grocery stores. Its husk and bran are removed, making it quicker and more convenient to cook than whole farro or semi-pearled farro.
- Aromatics: A classic mirepoix including onion, carrots and celery plus some garlic creates the aromatic foundation of this soup. I used a yellow onion but you can use a sweet onion or shallots here as well.
- Broth: I prefer to use homemade or store bought vegetable broth for ample flavor. Vegan chicken stock (like the Bouillon no-chicken base) works great too, if you have it.
- Farro: The star of the show! I used Roland® Pearled Italian Farro not only because it's delicious, but it's pearled, making it quick and easy to prepare. Find Roland® Pearled Italian Farro on Amazon!
- White Beans: Creamy white beans add a one-two punch of plant-based protein and fiber. I prefer using great northern beans, however navy beans, cannellini beans (aka white kidney beans) or butter beans also work perfectly.
- Diced Tomatoes: For flavor and to add a bit of thickness to the soup. Feel free to use fire-roasted diced tomatoes for even more flavor.
- Kale: For a pop of color and extra nutrients, I like to stir in a few handfuls of hearty greens, like chopped kale.
- Parmesan Cheese: Parmesan is sprinkled in at the end for richness and extra flavor. The nutty flavor and umami notes add so much depth to this soup! Just make sure you save some for sprinkling over each bowl. I used vegan parmesan cheese of course but for my non-vegan readers, use regular parmesan and the parmesan rind for added flavor (just be sure to take out the rind before serving).
- Seasoning: We'll be using Italian seasoning, salt and pepper.
See recipe card below for a full list of ingredients and measurements.
Substitutions & Variations
- Make this soup gluten-free by swapping farro for either brown rice, wild rice, sorghum or quinoa. Be sure to adjust your cooking time accordingly.
- If you're not a fan of kale, feel free to use spinach, collard greens, escarole, or swiss chard instead. Alternatively, you can leave out the leafy greens entirely.
- Scale back on the sodium by using half water/half broth. Just note that this option won't be as flavorful as if you were to use broth for all 6 cups of liquid.
- Swap vegan parmesan for nutritional yeast for a similar flavor that will give you even more nutrients, while still keeping this recipe dairy-free.
- If you'd like to add more vegetables, potatoes, mushrooms, red bell pepper, zucchini or squash are all great options that also happen to be popular in Italian cooking.
- Add 1-2 tablespoons of red wine vinegar or lemon juice for a touch of acidity and brightness.
- Make this soup spicy with the addition of red pepper flakes.
This recipe has not been tested with any other substitutions or variations than the ones listed above. If you replace or add any ingredients, please let us know how it turned out in the comments below!
Step 1: Add farro to a strainer or fine mesh sieve and rinse with cold water until the water that's being drained runs clear.
Step 2: Heat extra virgin olive oil in a large stock pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots and celery. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened. Add garlic and cook for 1 more minute, until fragrant.
Step 3: Add veggie broth and bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat. Once boiling, add farro, tomatoes, white beans, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper. Simmer for 15-20 minutes.
Step 4: Reduce to low heat then add kale and vegan parmesan cheese. Cook for 5 minutes, or until the kale has wilted. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired.
Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with fresh herbs (I like fresh basil or fresh parsley), cracked black pepper, grated parmesan cheese and a drizzle of good olive oil!
While this Italian farro soup recipe is satisfying enough on its own, here are some of my favorite pairings:
- Bread: A crusty bread or a fresh baguette are perfect for dipping into the flavorful broth or scooping up some of the contents of this hearty soup.
- Salad: A simple salad, like this kale caesar salad, is the perfect option to pair with this hearty soup.
- Sandwich: You can't go wrong with a soup + sandwich combo! This chickpea salad sandwich is always a hit.
- Let the soup simmer. This gives the flavors time to develop. You could simmer the soup for up to 1 hour for optimal flavor but the instructed 20 to 30 minutes will still result in a delicious, flavorful soup.
- If you're making ahead, you may want to consider cooking and storing the farro separately. This will keep it from absorbing all of the broth and getting a bit mushy after a few days in the fridge.
How to Store and Reheat
Refrigerator: Allow the soup to cool completely then transfer to an airtight container. Store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Freezer: Once the soup has cooled, transfer it to either one large or multiple individually portioned freezer-safe, airtight container(s). Freeze for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
Reheating: This soup reheats best on the stovetop, however, you can also reheat it in the microwave for convenience. For stovetop reheating, transfer soup to a saucepan and cook over medium heat for 5-10 minutes, or until warmed through. Alternatively, heat individual portions in a microwave-safe bowl, stirring every 30 seconds for 2 minutes, or until warmed through. Keep in mind that the farro will absorb liquid as it cools and after being stored in the fridge or freezer! Add ¼ cup of broth at a time, as needed, to thin the soup to your desired consistency.
You can definitely make this soup ahead of time and store it in the fridge until you're ready to serve it. Refer to the storage and reheating section for more info.
Yes! This helps to remove any dust or debris that could be remaining on the farro after it has been processed and packaged.
Other recipes you might like
Tuscan Farro Soup with White Beans and Kale
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup (150 g) yellow onion diced
- ½ cup (70 g) celery trimmed and chopped
- ½ cup (80 g) carrots peeled and chopped
- 3 (12 g) garlic cloves minced
- 6 cups (48 oz) vegetable broth
- 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup (225 g) Roland® Pearled Italian Farro
- 1 can (15 oz) diced tomatoes do not drain
- 1 can (14 oz) white beans drained and rinsed
- 2 cups (50 g) kale chopped
- ¼ cup (56 g) vegan parmesan cheese grated, and more for garnish
- Add Roland® Pearled Italian Farro to a strainer or fine mesh sieve and rinse with cool water.1 cup Roland® Pearled Italian Farro
- Heat oil in a large stock pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Once hot, add the onion, carrots and celery. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened. Add garlic and cook for 1 mote minute, until fragrant.2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 cup yellow onion, ½ cup celery, ½ cup carrots, 3 garlic cloves
- Add broth and increase to high heat to bring mixture to a boil. Once boiling, add farro, tomatoes, white beans, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper. Simmer soup over medium-high heat for 15-20 minutes, or until farro is tender and chewy but still has an al dente bite.2 teaspoons Italian seasoning, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, ½ teaspoon black pepper, 6 cups vegetable broth, 1 can diced tomatoes, 1 can white beans
- Reduce heat to low then add kale and vegan parmesan cheese. Cook for 5 minutes, or until the kale has wilted.2 cups kale, ¼ cup vegan parmesan cheese
- Taste/adjust seasonings as needed. Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with fresh basil, cracked black pepper, vegan parmesan cheese and a drizzle of olive oil, if desired.