What exactly are wheat berries? Wheat berries are unprocessed kernels of wheat, and they are higher in vitamins and essential nutrients when eaten in their whole form. When cooked, it has a chewy texture.
Having never cooked them before, I was intrigued to try. These were easily found at my local Whole Foods store (in their bulk bins area) for $1.40 per pound. You start off by cooking the wheat berries. While the wheat berries cooked, I chopped up my fresh veggies, and voila- Meal is done. I loved how you could taste the fresh flavors from your crunchy vegetables with the added tang from the red wine vinegar. I felt satiated… yet not heavy or bloated. Perfect as a side, or a main meal. For my meat-eating DB, I paired this with some grilled chicken breasts.
Here is what they look like raw:
Here is what they look like cooked (they darken in color):
Wheat Berry Salad
- 5 cups water
- 1/2 cup dry wheat berries, rinsed under cool running water and drained
- Pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup yellow or red onion, chopped
- 1/2 cup diced cucumber
- 1/4 cup diced red bell pepper
- 6-8 kalamata olives, quartered (Omitted)
- 2 Tbsp pumpkin seeds
- 2 Tbsp dried cranberries (These are the highlight of this salad!)
- ¼ cup crumbled feta cheese
- Few sprigs of fresh parsley, chopped (I substituted with a dash of dried parsley)
- 1 Tbsp EVOO
- ~2 Tbsp red wine vinegar, to taste
- Salt and pepper, to taste
1. Combine the water, wheat berries, and salt into a saucepan. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce to medium/low until wheat has desired texture – about an hour or longer, stirring occasionally. Take off heat, strain and put in the fridge to cool.
2. Once they have cooled, combine the remaining ingredients together.
3. Place back in the fridge for 30 minutes or longer.
Yield: 2 servings
Source: Adapted from Clean Eating Mama