My Barley Salad with Roasted Carrots and Chickpeas is a hearty, vegetarian, whole grain dish packed with nutrients and flavor.
One of my favorite things to do when I have a day off is to visit my local farmers market. When I go grocery shopping for a blog post, I have to plan ahead and take a very organized list with me because recipe testing requires that kind of diligence. But when I have a day off and am cooking just for my family, I like to go without a list and see what inspires me.
So the other day I grabbed my shopping bag and set off to Marando Farms, a local farmers market down the road. When I got to the farmers market, I was delighted to find the most beautiful organic rainbow carrots so I immediately snatched up a bunch! I also found lovely oranges, apples, and cucumbers, which I added to my bag.
When I got home, I decided to make a Barley Salad with Roasted Carrots and Chickpeas- a nutritious, veggie-forward meal featuring my lovely farmers market produce. Searching my pantry, I found a bag of barley so I decided to make a barley salad featuring those rainbow carrots. But if you don’t have barley, this dish would work just as well with any whole grain such as farro, quinoa or wild rice.
One of my favorite ways to cook carrots and intensity their flavor is to roast them at a high temperature in the oven. To complement the natural sweetness of the carrots, I decided to toss them with some rich, savory Middle Eastern spices including cumin, turmeric and paprika. Since I was turning on my oven for the carrots, I threw in a tray of chickpeas as well. Roasted chickpeas are a great addition to salads and also make a nutritious snack. I tossed the chickpeas with the same spice blend, giving them plenty of color as well as flavor.
Once my carrots and chickpeas were done, I tossed them with the cooked barley, some crunchy pistachios and fresh parsley. To tie my Barley Salad with Roasted Carrots and Chickpeas all together, I made a Lemon Tahini dressing using tahini, a sesame paste commonly used in Middle Eastern cuisine (and one of the main ingredients in hummus). The dressing packs a bright, citrusy punch that perfectly complements the sweet vegetables and earthy spices. Hearty enough to be a main course, this plant-based salad is sure to please. And if you make enough, it’s perfect to pack up for lunch the next day.
Barley Salad with Roasted Carrots and Chickpeas
- 1 cup barley
- 3 cups reduced sodium vegetable broth or water
- 6 rainbow carrots peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
- 4 teaspoons olive oil, divided use
- 1 can chickpeas (15.5 ounces), drained and dried with a towel
- ½ cup roughly chopped, fresh parsley
- ¼ cup shelled pistachios
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika (or any type of paprika)
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
Lemon Tahini Dressing:
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon tahini
- ½ clove garlic
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon water
- ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- Place the barley and vegetable broth in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce to a simmer. Cook until barley is soft and chewy (cooking time will vary depending on the type of barley used). Transfer the barley to a large mixing bowl.
- Toss the carrots with 2 teaspoons olive oil on a baking sheet. Toss the chickpeas with 2 teaspoons olive oil on a second baking sheet.
- To make the spice mix, mix the cumin, turmeric, paprika, and salt in a small bowl.
- Toss the carrots with half of the spice mix and toss the chickpeas with the other half of the spice mix. Roast the carrots and chickpeas in the oven until crisp tender, 20-25 minutes. Remove from oven and add to the bowl with the barley.
- To make the dressing, whisk the lemon juice, tahini, garlic, olive oil, water, salt and pepper together in a bowl.
- Add the dressing and the parsley to the bowl and stir to combine all ingredients. Adjust seasoning to taste. Transfer to a serving platter and top with pistachios and extra parsley.
Kris ~ Big Rigs 'n Lil' Cookies says
You have me so excited for the carrots we have growing in the garden! So excited for all the recipes waiting for me when I pick our fresh veggies!
Shannon K. says
I made this for dinner last night and my husband and I both loved it! Absolutely delicious, although my presentation was not nearly as pretty!
Barley is one grain I have not tried. Sounds easy. I do keep all the ingredients except barley and Naked juice. Time for me to shop for these 2 ingredients and experiment with this new recipe. Thanks much for my new experiment.
The recipe looks delicious and yummy too. I'll try it soon. Thanks for sharing.
Kristy from Southern In Law says
This looks deeeeeelicious! I can't get enough of roasted carrots at the moment!
Alisa Fleming says
That dish looks amazing! Definitely going on my list to try. I can't get enough roasted vegetables. I hadn't seen those juices - will have to keep an eye out for them. I've heard good things about that brand.
Sooooo.... I just realized I've never made barley! I have to try it now! Also. I had no idea that Naked made cold pressed juices – amazing!
These NAKED Juice blends look wonderful! Time to amp up on the veggies now that they are everywhere! I love this time of year!
This salad looks delicious and packed with flavor! I love the addition of roasted carrots and the tahini dressing!
Taylor Kiser says
What a delicious salad and perfect for Meatless Monday! Those rainbow carrots are gorgeous! And those Naked Cold Pressed Juices are a great way to get in extra fruits and veggies!
I am so bad at lists when shopping for new recipe posts. I always forget something! And I'm all about a good summer farmer's market! We have a good one here in town!
Emily Kyle says
This juice looks delicious! I love how you used this in the recipe, it is so clever and unique! I can't wait to try it this summer 🙂
This sounds so delicious Sonali! I couldn't agree with you more, recipe testing definitely requires a list but the most fun I have is when I go with an open mind and whip up whatever I can find that sparks my fancy! Love this recipe, it sounds like a perfect meal for summer too!
I can't WAIT for the farmer's market to open up here! This recipe looks absolutely delicious!
AZ@...And A Dash of Cinnamon says
Roasted veggies are AMAZING!