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Creamy Vegan Farrotto with Butternut Squash

Vegan farrotto with butternut squash, cashews, miso, and herbs is a delicious cold weather supper that is both nourishing and cozy.
Cuisine Italian, Plant-Based, Vegan, Vegetarian
Diet Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword butternut squash, cashews, coconut oil, fall, farro, garlic, holiday entertaining, holidays, lemon, miso, nutritional yeast, shallots, thyme, winter
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 25 minutes
Servings 4



  • 1 small butternut squash
  • 4 cups low/no-sodium vegetable stock
  • 2 ¼ cups filtered water, divided
  • 1 ½ cups whole farro
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ cup finely diced shallots (about 1 large shallot)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 sprigs thyme, leaves minced
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • cup raw cashews, soaked for at least 2 hours and drained
  • 1 tablespoon mellow miso
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste to taste


  • Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment.
  • Cut the butternut squash down the middle lengthwise. Lay both halves, cut side down, on the parchment lined sheet. Slide the squash into the oven and roast until very tender, about 40 minutes.
  • In a medium saucepan, combine the vegetable stock and 1 cup of the water and place it over medium-low heat. Cover the stock, and let it simmer gently.
  • Place half of the farro in an upright blender. Grind the grains on high until they are evenly “cracked” and resemble steel cut oatmeal. Set aside.
  • Make the butternut and cashew cream: Retrieve 1 cup of cooked butternut squash from the cooked halves, discarding the seeds. Save any extra squash for another use. In an upright blender, combine the squash, cashews, miso, nutritional yeast, salt, pepper, and remaining water. Blend this mixture on high until it’s completely smooth. Set aside.
  • Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy pot over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook, stirring frequently, until very soft and translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and thyme and stir. Pour the whole and “cracked” farro into the pot and stir. Keep stirring until you hear crackling sounds and there’s a toasty aroma, about 2 minutes. Pour the lemon juice and ¼ cup of water into the pot and stir until the liquid is evaporated.
  • Carefully transfer the warmed vegetable stock to the pot with the farro. Stir to combine and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to a simmer, cover, and let it cook for 20 minutes. Then, stir the farrotto a bit and cook it for another 20 minutes—keep stirring it here and there at this point.
  • Transfer the butternut cream to the farrotto pot and stir to combine. Season generously with salt and pepper. Bring the farrotto to a boil and simmer, uncovered for another 20 minutes. You will need to stir this fairly often to avoid sputtering. The farrotto is ready when the grains look like they are lightly immersed in a creamy sauce. Whole farro grains will still have some chew to them. The farrotto will thicken as it sits, but it definitely shouldn’t be runny.
  • Serve farrotto hot with freshly ground black pepper and extra thyme leaves/other greens on top.


  • Recipe inspired by the cracking technique from Cook’s Illustrated, as well as recipes from The New York Times and Food & Wine.
  • I wouldn’t substitute the butternut with any other type of squash. You want that sweet creaminess!
  • This recipe is written with WHOLE farro. I would not try it with other versions (pearled, semi-pearled, quick-cooking etc) without significantly adjusting the amount of liquid.