A few weeks ago I wrote about McCormick’s annual global report, compiled by McCormick chefs, trend trackers and food technologists, which unveiled trends and flavors that they predict will drive culinary innovation in years to come. You can read my post, here, as I was specifically attracted to the Empowered Eating forecast.

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Empowered Eating – people are making healthier choices, using spices to enhance flavors–like the dessert that includes “farro grain” which I’m sharing today. The study shows we are making food more thoughtful, more personal, more conscious driven to what’s best for our bodies, how we feel, what’s right for us.

After a light dinner salad as our week night meal a few weeks ago, our guests (who are very health conscious), loved the dessert that I served: Farro “Rice” Pudding.

Have you ever cooked with farro? If you’re looking for a new grain to try, I totally recommend it. Also known as emmer, farro is a variety of wheat that originated in the Middle East, but is primarily grown in Northern Italy. It’s similar to barley and wheat berries, and can be used in place of rice, quinoa, or other similar grains. You can find it in the rice and pasta or organic sections in grocery stores.

Because I learned farro is rich in fiber and protein, I didn’t stress a heavy entree for the meal I served, saving it for dessert. Who would have thought you could make a dessert–delicious rice pudding–taste so favorful?

The Farro Rice Pudding (deliciously enhanced with McCormick spices of Cinnamon sticks, Ground Cloves, and Vanilla) has a satisfyingly chewy texture similar to brown rice, very different for a dessert, but you can cook in advance, and store the pudding in the fridge along with the sauce.

After dinner, warm each bowl separately as dessert time draws near, and spoon on a bit of the blackberry sauce. The sauce is amazing!

Your healthy-eating guests will love you!

Have you ever cooked with farro?


Recipe: Farro “Rice” Pudding {ReluctantEntertainer.com}

Summary: Versatile farro is prepared like a rice pudding with milk, cinnamon, vanilla and raisins. Serve warm with a vibrant Blackberry Sauce for a new take on the classic dessert.


  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup farro*
  • 1 quart (4 cups) whole milk
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 stick McCormick® Cinnamon Sticks
  • 1/4 teaspoon McCormick® Ground Cloves
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 2 teaspoons McCormick® Pure Vanilla Extract
  • Blackberry Sauce: 1 cup frozen blackberries
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon blackberry liqueur


  1. For the Farro “Rice” Pudding, bring water and farro to boil in large saucepan on medium heat. Reduce heat to low; simmer 15 minutes or until farro is tender. Drain and return farro to saucepan.
  2. Stir in milk, half-and-half, sugar, eggs, cinnamon stick and cloves. Bring to boil on medium heat. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cook 45 minutes or until mixture is thick and creamy, stirring occasionally. Remove cinnamon stick. Stir in raisins and vanilla.
  3. Meanwhile for the Blackberry Sauce, bring blackberries, water and sugar to boil in small saucepan. Cook until blackberries soften and sugar is dissolved. Carefully pour into blender. Add cornstarch and liqueur. Cover. Blend on medium speed until smooth and thickened. Strain. Cool to room temperature. Serve with warm Farro “Rice” Pudding.
  4. Make Ahead: Transfer pudding to large bowl. Place plastic wrap directly on surface of pudding. Cool slightly then refrigerate. Refrigerate Blackberry Sauce. Warm pudding in microwave oven.

Preparation time: 10 minute(s)

Cooking time: 1 hour(s) 10 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 6


I’ve partnered with McCormick & Company for this post; but as always, all opinions are my own.