Looking for a great new grain to use in salads, side dishes, and more? This guide has the answer! From popular grains, like quinoa, to those growing in prominence, like freekeh, these good-for-you grains are the perfect addition to any meal.

By Andrea Beck

Your Guide to Grains

Never heard of freekeh or farro? No problem! This guide has all the info you need to try out a brand-new grain, plus a few familiar ones. With dozens of delicious recipes to try, you'll definitely want to keep these versatile grains on hand in your pantry.


Farro was the first-grown wheat-grain: It has been cultivated for more than 20,000 years. It lost popularity as other faster-growing varieties of wheat gained prominence, but has since made a comeback as an important whole grain. Farro can be used in salads, soups, pilafs, and more.

Wheat Berry

Wheat berry is an entire kernel of unrefined whole grain wheat; it includes the bran, germ, and endosperm. Like the rest of these grains, it's delicious in salads, pilafs, and more.


Spelt, an easy-to-digest ancient whole grain, is enjoying newfound popularity because of its place among trendy health foods. Spelt has a mild nutty flavor and a firm, chewy texture, even after it has been cooked. This grain can be used in salads and chili, and even ground into flour.


Bulgur is a dried cracked wheat that is processed through steaming and drying. Next, the wheat grains are ground into coarse, medium, or fine pieces. This go-to grain in the Middle East is great for pilafs, tabbouleh, and salads.

Try bulgur in this Tabbouleh recipe.


Freekeh is a new ingredient to American markets, but it has long enjoyed popularity in the Mediterranean and the Middle East. This grain is the kernel of green durum wheat that is roasted, then beaten and dried in the sun to develop the desired flavor. Freekeh can be used in soups, salads, and stuffings, and more.


You've probably heard of this popular ancient grain. As a source of complete protein, it has become a favorite of healthy eaters everywhere. Considered the "mother grain" of the ancient Peruvian Incas, quinoa is a staple in much of South America. This versatile grain can be eaten for breakfast, lunch, and dinner—and can even be baked into a casserole.

Healthy & Fast Recipes

How to Pop Quinoa

More Delicious Grain Recipes

Try out these grains—plus a few more—in some of our favorite grain and quinoa recipes:


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