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Mediterranean Farro Lunch Bowls | sweetpeasandsaffron.com


Mediterranean farro chicken lunch bowls have balsamic roasted chicken breast, eggplant, zucchini and fennel, topped with fresh fennel fronds and crumbled feta cheese. Healthy yet filling, it’s a great lunch to prep ahead for the week!

If you are looking for make ahead lunches, you have arrive to the right place! From honey sesame chicken lunch bowls to turkey taco lunch bowls, we have over 130 meal prep lunch options for you to select from.

two meal prep containers with the mediterranean farro chicken lunch bowls

These Mediterranean farro chicken lunch bowls are another hearty yet healthy option that is full of flavor: with roasted veggies, balsamic vinegar, feta cheese and fennel, it’s a deliciously unique lunch recipe for the office!

Why you’ll ♡ Mediterranean farro chicken lunch bowls

  • is a delicious blend of flavors and textures: soft and slightly sweet roasted vegetables, salty feta and chewy farro
  • it holds up great for 4 days in the fridge
  • it will fill you up and abandon you satisfied

Recipe video

Watch the video below to see how simple it is prep these lunch bowls! You can find more recipe videos on my YouTube channel.

ingredients required to make farro lunch bowls

Ingredient notes

  • chicken– I’ve used boneless skinless chicken breasts for this recipe, but you can easily swap for an equal weight of boneless skinless chicken thighs; they should cook for roughly the same amount of time in the oven.
  • fennel– we are making use of both the bulb and the fronds of the fennel. It adds a unique and slightly ‘licoricey’ flavor to the bowls that is irresistible
  • eggplant and zucchini– I love the color and flavor that these veggies add, but consider them flexible- swap for cauliflower, broccoli, bell peppers, brussels sprouts, or your favorite roasting vegetable. Adjust the cook time as needed if you swap.
  • feta cheese– this adds salty flavor that really seasons the recipe; if you swap it out, you may need to add some salt to the vinaigrette.
  • farro– a whole wheat grain that is a great alternative to processed grains, it’s lower on the glycemic index, meaning it will keep you feeling full for longer. Note that farro is not gluten-free; you may swap for rice or quinoa (1/2 cup cooked)

How to cook farro

Farro is a whole wheat grain that originated in Mesopotamia. Farro is gaining popularity because it’s so healthy for you and a great alternative to processed grains. Farro differs slightly in its cooking method compared to rice or quinoa- rather than using the exact amount of liquid, we use a ‘boil and drain’ method.

You can cook farro on the stove top, or in the Instant Pot! Find more detailed information in this how to cook farro post.

collage image showing the steps required to make mediterranean chicken lunch bowls

Step by step directions

Scroll to the recipe card for ingredient quantities.

  1. Cook farro- We commence by cooking the farro, as it takes the longest. Rinse the farro in a colander under the tap, then add to a pot. Cover with 4 cups of water, cover and cook. You’ll want the farro to simmer for at least 25 minutes; at this point, have a taste and decide if you want to keep cooking. Drain the farro, and allow to cool before assembling the lunch bowls.
  2. Roast the chicken- We will next multitask by roasting the chicken and the vegetables at the same time. Toss the chicken in olive oil and balsamic vinegar, and roast in the oven for a total time of 25 minutes, flipping halfway. Chicken should reach an internal temperature of 165°F when tested with an instant read thermometer. Allow chicken to rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing.
  3. Roast the vegetables- chop fennel, eggplant and zucchini into equal-sized chunks (1/2 inch is a good size). Toss in olive oil and balsamic vinegar, and spread out on a sheet pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, then roast in the oven for a total time of 15-25 minutes, stirring it up half way.
  4. Make the vinaigrette- Combine olive oil, balsamic vinegar, maple syrup and dijon mustard in a small jar. Shake it up until completely combined.
  5. Assemble the bowls- After all ingredients are cooked and cooled, assemble the lunch bowls: Add 1/2 cup cooked farro, 4 oz or half a chicken breast, around 1 cup of vegetables and 1 tablespoon feta cheese per bowl. Top with some fresh fennel fronds and drizzle with the vinaigrette.

Recipe tips

Use separate pans for chicken and vegetables

The chicken and vegetables require different cook times, so it makes it simple to pull one out sooner than the other by using separate dishes. I like to use a sheet pan for the vegetables and a baking dish for the chicken.

Don’t overcrowd the pan

When roasting vegetables, rule number one is do not overcrowd the pan. You want to make sure there is space between the vegetables so that they roast up and obtain kind and golden; if they are too close together, the water released from their neighbor will cause them to steam rather than roast.

A note about fennel

If you are modern to fennel, here’s a great tutorial with step by step photos to show you how to prep the bulb. For this recipe, we are cubing the fennel, and it retains a certain amount of chew in the lunch bowls. If you’d prefer the fennel to be completely soft, go for lean slices instead.

Hot or cold

This recipe was intended to be a salad eaten cold (hence the vinaigrette). However, feel free to reheat it if you’d prefer! Simply pop it in the microwave and heat until warmed through.

close up of mediterranean chicken lunch bowls

Storage

These farro lunch bowls keep really well for meal prep, even after dressing in the vinaigrette. Here are tips for storage:

  • fridge– cool everything completely before portioning out into meal prep containers. Store in the fridge for up to 4 days.
  • freezer- I do not recommend freezing roasted vegetables (they obtain really slimy).
  • reheat- while this recipe was intended to be served as a cold salad, if you prefer, you can reheat in the microwave until steaming hot.

Check out my favorite meal prep containers!

More lunch bowls

Mediterranean Chicken Farro Lunch Bowl Recipe

Course: Lunch

Cuisine: Mediterranean

Keyword: farro, meal prep, salad

Calories: 411kcal

Servings: 4

Mediterranean farro chicken lunch bowls have balsamic roasted chicken breast, eggplant, zucchini and fennel, topped with fresh fennel fronds and crumbled feta cheese. Healthy yet filling, it’s a great lunch to prep ahead for the week!

Prep Time15 mins

Cook Time40 mins

Total Time55 mins

  • Cook farro- Rinse the farro in a colander under the tap, then add to a pot. Cover with 4 cups of water, cover and cook. Simmer for 25 minutes and taste for chewiness. If you’d like it softer, simmer for 5 more minutes. Drain the farro, and allow to cool before assembling the lunch bowls.

  • Roast the chicken- Heat oven to 425°F. Toss the chicken in olive oil and balsamic vinegar, and roast in the oven for a total time of 25 minutes, flipping halfway. Chicken should reach an internal temperature of 165°F when tested with an instant read thermometer. Allow chicken to rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing.

  • Roast the vegetables-Toss the eggplant, zucchini and fennel in olive oil and balsamic vinegar, and spread out on a sheet pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, then roast in the oven for a total time of 15-25 minutes, stirring it up half way.

  • Make the vinaigrette- Combine olive oil, balsamic vinegar, maple syrup and dijon mustard in a small jar. Shake it up until completely combined.

  • Assemble the bowls- After all ingredients are cooked and cooled, assemble the lunch bowls: Add 1/2 cup cooked farro, 4 oz or half a chicken breast, around 1 cup of vegetables and 1 tablespoon feta cheese per bowl. Top with some fresh fennel fronds and drizzle with the vinaigrette.

1- you may swap for boneless skinless chicken thighs; it should take the same amount of time in the oven, but check with an instant read thermometer that they reach 165°F internally.
This recipe was also SUPER delicious with butternut squash!
The fennel is tender but still has some bite to it. If you want the texture to be softer, be sure to slice the fennel thinly.

Serving: 1lunch bowl | Calories: 411kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 34g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 78mg | Sodium: 353mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 9g


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