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Freekeh salad recipe

Katherine Martinelli is an internationally published food and travel writer and photographer who contributes regularly to publications on three continents. She recently released her first cookbook, Puff Pastry at Brunch: 10 Sweet and Sa...

An ancient grain for modern health

Have you tried freekeh, also known as green wheat? Popular in the Middle East for centuries, it’s coming into the spotlight in America, where it’s being praised for its high nutritional content and pleasant taste.

An ancient grain for modern health

Freekeh (also called frikeh, farik and green wheat) is wheat that is picked when young, then dried and roasted. When shelled, it resembles bulgur or farro, and can be used in many of the same applications. While it has traditionally been popular in Lebanon, Syria, Israel, Palestine and Egypt, Oprah and others have brought this ancient grain into the modern limelight.

Read about 10 more superfoods to incorporate into your diet  >>

Indeed, freekeh is a superfood with four times the amount of fiber than brown rice. It also has more vitamins and minerals than traditional wheat. Use it to make a pilaf, in place of rice, or in a fresh grain and vegetable salad like this.

Freekeh salad

Makes 4 side servings


  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 cup freekeh (green wheat)
  • 1-3/4 cups water
  • 1 small cucumber, chopped
  • 6 cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered if large
  • 1/4 cup roughly chopped or torn basil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan or small pot over medium heat.
  2. Add the freekeh and stir until fully coated in oil and lightly toasted, about four minutes.
  3. Add the water to cover and bring to a simmer.
  4. Simmer until the water has reduced by half, about 10 minutes.
  5. Lower the heat and cover. Cook for another 10 minutes, or until the water is fully absorbed.
  6. Remove from the heat and allow to rest, covered, for five minutes.
  7. Fluff with a fork.
  8. Transfer to a large bowl and allow to cool.
  9. Add the cucumber, tomatoes, basil and lemon juice, and toss.
  10. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

More about healthy grains

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Top 10 secrets to cook the best grains
Get kids to eat more whole grains

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