I really like free things. I’m the girl who tries multiple flavors at the frozen yogurt place, has a collection of toothpicks in hand at a farmers market and shoves all toiletries in my bag when leaving a hotel. Whoever said 'there is no such thing as a free lunch', has never been to Costco/Sam's Club on the weekend. When POM Wonderful sent me a box of 100% POM juice, I felt all blog efforts had paid off. I’ve seen the nubby bottles in the produce section, but breeze right past, as juice doesn’t tickle my fancy. I will start by saying it makes a refreshing slushy after a short stint in the freezer. This grain salad however, packed with bold flavors, is a perfect way to take advantage of the end of cherry season. Wheat berries are easily found at Whole Foods or a local health food store. They look like plump brown rice, but have a nuttier flavor.

The recipe below makes a great vegetarian side dish, and Hugh mentioned he thought it would be great along side of a burger. I made this for a dinner party at my parent’s house and added some crispy, salty bacon into the final toss. I hate to admit this, seeing as bacon doesn’t have a seat in the Sprouted Kitchen, but it was a layer of flavor that put this salad over the edge. The recipe below does not include the pound of crispy bacon I added in for my parent’s party, but if you partake in eating little piggies, just make sure it’s extra crispy. Eish, can't believe I suggested that.wheatberry_02


1 Cup Wheat Berries
3 Cups Arugula
2 Cups Bing Cherries, pitted and cut in half
1 tsp Kosher Salt
Zest of one Lemon

POM DRESSING // This will look like a lot of dressing and seasoning, but the wheat berries are very dense and soak up a lot of the liquid from the dressing while in the fridge. Use less if you prefer, but it is what gives the wheat berries any flavor.

1 Shallot, roughly chopped
Big Handful of Fresh Fennel Fronds or Dill, Chopped
3/4 Cup Soft Goat Cheese
1/3 Cup POM, 100% Pomegranate Juice
2 tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
½ tsp. Cumin
1/2 tsp. Kosher Salt
2 tsp. Fresh Ground Pepper wheatberry_03wheatberry_04wheatberry_05

Rinse the wheat berries in a strainer. Bring 4 cups of water to a boil, add the wheat berries. Boil for about 45 minutes or until tender and split open a bit, add water if they dry out before cooking. Put them in a large mixing bowl.
While the wheat berries are cooking, make your dressing. In a processor or blender, add the shallot, fennel frond/dill, POM, cumin and pepper. Blend to combine. Add the goat cheese and olive oil and give another whirl.
While the wheat berries are still warm add the dressing and mix. Let it cool for a few minutes. Add the arugula and cherries (and bacon if you please) and mix again. At this point, add the lemon zest and taste for salt and pepper. Don't be shy with the seasoning.

~You can either serve at room temp, or chill in the fridge to let the flavors saturate and serve it as a cold side salad.wheatberry_06

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    WHEAT BERRY SALAD - SPROUTED KITCHEN - A Tastier Take on Whole Foods

Reader Comments (35)

Oh my god, the photography!!! Catch me! I'm swooning!

August 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDana

Love your final plating pictures. Beautiful.

August 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterWhitneyinchicago@gma

Oh my this looks amazing! This is one thing that I have not ate much of- wheatberries!

August 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJen @ MaplenCornbread

"Whoever said ‘there is no such thing as a free lunch’, has never been to Costco/Sam’s Club on the weekend."

I laughed out loud when I read that. When my husband and I were first married and dirt poor, we used to make the trip to Sam's a regular weekend event!

August 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCooking Bride

I've always wondered what to use wheat berries in. Salad...brilliant!

as one who also has a penchant for free things...i {heart} costco

August 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commentermichelle

Looks divine, and as always beautiful photographs from Hugh.
I am dying to try this looks like such a lovely combination of flavours & textures.
am currently scouring the internet for where to buy wheat berries in Sydney!!

August 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterZoe

Nicely done, Sara - and I am so with you on the free things. :) When are you and Hugh going to make a cookbook? Seriously. It needs to be a big hardcover, the kind you set on the coffee table and people flip through it when they visit. I would love that.

August 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterShannalee

Beautiful last two shots - love the textures on the plates, too.

August 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterliz {zested}

w o w, the colors are so beautiful. i need a plate of this salad and i need it now!

August 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterchez danisse

ps--i'm all for adding the crunchy bacon.

August 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterchez danisse

The best thing about this recipe is that it makes me want to try something new (I've never had wheat berries before). The second best thing is that I have all of the ingredients for this (minus the wheat berries) in my kitchen. I love it when that happens.

August 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLisa's Cocina

This sounds extraordinarily tasty! Loving the addition of goats cheese in the dressing too. The finished dish must be super bright and flavorful with such a variety added in to the dressing.

August 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterEmily

Your blog is quickly becoming one of my favorites for the beautiful photography. The final shot of the plate with the sun behind it is my favorite!

August 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterElissa

Okay, you win. I love your writing and your photography! The one with the light shining down on the salad like a blessing from the kitchen Goddess, is......words fail me. I am truly thrilled to find your blog and will be putting it on my blog roll as soon as I press "post."

August 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDana Zia

Holy meow, this looks amazing. Cherries and wheatberries, I am about to raid the pantry for that bag O wheatberries that are twiddling their thumbs in the dark.

August 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMadame Fromage

man. I really want to like wheatberries, but hardly ever find something that they shine in. I'm going to have to try this, even though I don't like pitting cherries, AT ALL.

August 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterTracy

stunning photos!! :)

August 17, 2009 | Unregistered Commenternora@ffr

I've been looking for a chance to use wheatberries on a good recipe. This looks great.

August 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLainey

Looks yummy! Random question... where did you get those pretty dishes?

August 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterTessa

I love savory & fruity salads, especially ones with grain. This looks delish.
PS I think there should always be a little room for bacon.

August 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnne

how lovely. this looks divine. thank you so much for posting this. i always am intimidated by wheatberry - don't ask me why. silly i know. the dressing really sounds interesting. can't wait to make this one. stunning images as always. i especially love the setting at the table with the sun beating down.

August 18, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterlinda

this dish looks delicious! great recipe idea. i love your photography work also, it's really great!

August 18, 2009 | Unregistered Commentersimplehungrybroke

I love free stuff! If I can get it free...I will take it:) I'm so jealous you got free POM juice. You made a great meal with this free juice. Those wheat berries look awesome. I need to try some!

August 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterNutmeg Nanny

This looks amazing! I love that bottom left photo!

August 18, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterfresh365

Talk about a clean design and gorgeous pictures - wowee! Love it! Thanks for stopping by :)

August 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCaitlin

beautiful, beautiful photos! This looks absolutely delicious, I love anything with pom juice in it.

August 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterHannah

The salad looks excellent and the photos are just sooooo lovely!

August 18, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterredmenace

These photos should be against the law. They are too beautiful. I can almost taste those chewy wheat berries.

August 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterThe Leftoverist

Ugh, the amazing. Absolutely breathtaking. Oh, and the recipe sounds delicious as well--I really love how in one of the photos all of the salad ingredients are in their own little area of the bowl before being stirred up. Looks wonderful!

August 19, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterdragonfly pie

I am now in the habit of dropping by every few days just to breathe in some of this beauty

...and hope some of this healthy eating will rub off on me. It's like a little spray of water in my face. I just thought I'd say "thanks" for the refreshment.

August 19, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKim (@ Paper Apron)

I'm completely speechless and a lot starstruck that the person behind my favorite blog came to visit my humble digs. I found out about you a week or so ago thanks to Mae Bird too! thank you for the kindest words, for coming up with such fantastic recipes, and jaw-dropping pictures. I know I'm one amongst many whose days are made a lot brighter thanks to your posts.

August 20, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterceline

Wow, what an interesting mix of ingredients. I bet it would be AMAZING alongside a burger! Your pictures are just gorgeous.

August 25, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKasey

This is really delicious! I used cranberries instead of cherries though. I'll definitely have to try the cherries when they're in season!

January 7, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLaura

Do you think i could use bookwheat or spelt instead of the wheat berries?
Thanks a lot!

May 19, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterelisabeth

yes the pictures are amazing. we actually made the recipe - and IT was amazing. i might dress the arugula with a little lemon juice, EVOO and S&P, just to wilt it a little. i love goat cheese and would save a little to add it chunky at the end. just for color. so so good.

June 16, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterlauren

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