Roasted Cherry Tomato, Arugula and Sorghum Salad

Light and healthy sorghum salad with roasted cherry tomatoes, arugula and feta (gluten free) -

Have you tried sorghum yet? Bob’s Red Mill asked me to create an original recipe using one of their ancient grains, and I took it as an opportunity to try something new. Sorghum is a gluten-free pseudo grain, like millet and quinoa. It’s actually a grass, but cooks up like a grain. It’s round like pearl couscous and a little chewy, like farro or wheat berries.

I’ve been using sorghum as a substitute in recipes that typically call for couscous (like tabouli), other small pasta shapes and whole grains like farro. It has been nice to offer my gluten-free friends something other than rice and quinoa. Bonus? My bag of sorghum cost only three dollars, which is significantly less than the same sized bags of quinoa and rice.

sorghum and cherry tomatoes

I like to geek out on ingredients, so I thought I’d share some of the more interesting facts I’ve learned about sorghum. It’s one of those surprising “grains” that doesn’t get much attention, even though it’s the fifth most important cereal crop in the world.

Sorghum first appeared near Egypt around 8000 years ago. It spread through Africa and eventually, China, via India. It’s grown primarily for human consumption in Africa and parts of Asia, but in the United States, it’s grown for livestock consumption and ethanol production. I happen to live in the state that produces the most sorghum of all, Kansas. We’ll probably hear more and more about sorghum as a crop, since it’s particularly drought resistant and requires less water than corn.

sorghum and lemon dressing

This recipe came to be after I got a hankering for sweet, roasted cherry tomatoes. I’m really excited about tomato season, so much so that I planted a cherry tomato plant in my back yard this weekend (grow, tomatoes, grow!). Once roasted, the cherry tomatoes turn from sweet-and-tart gems into concentrated sweet, saucy goodness.

I balanced the sweetness of the tomatoes with bitter arugula, and added sorghum for substance. Salty feta, lemon and garlic round out this hearty and healthy, gluten-free salad. Sorghum is one of the more time-consuming grains to cook, so plan on having a pot on the stove for an hour, but the rest comes together quickly. As always, see my notes for substitution and storage suggestions!

sorghum saladRoasted cherry tomatoes - cookieandkate.comRoasted cherry tomato and arugula salad - cookieandkate.comRecipe for roasted cherry tomato, arugula and sorghum salad - cookieandkate.comWhole grain salad with roasted cherry tomatoes, arugula and feta (gluten free) -

Roasted Cherry Tomato, Arugula and Sorghum Salad
4.0 from 4 reviews
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
A light and healthy sorghum salad featuring roasted cherry tomatoes, arugula and feta (optional) tossed in a lemony dressing. This salad is gluten free and vegan, if you skip the cheese. If you'd like to turn this salad into a full meal, add chickpeas for protein.
  • 1 cup sorghum, rinsed in a fine mesh colander
  • 3 cups water
Roasted cherry tomatoes
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Sea salt
Lemony dressing
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ¼ teaspoon fine grain sea salt
  • 1 clove garlic, pressed or minced
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Everything else
  • 3 cups baby arugula*
  • ¼ cup crumbled feta
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • Optional: 1 can (14 ounces) chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  1. First, cook the sorghum: Combine rinsed sorghum and three cups water in a small pot. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook until the sorghum is pleasantly tender but still has some chew to it, about 55 to 65 minutes. You can wait until the sorghum is halfway cooked before proceeding with the next steps.
  2. To roast the cherry tomatoes: Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a small, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper for easy cleanup. Toss the whole cherry tomatoes with one tablespoon olive oil and a sprinkle of salt. Roast until the tomatoes are soft, plump and starting to burst open, about 18 minutes.
  3. To make the dressing: Whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper until emulsified.
  4. Once the sorghum is done cooking: Drain off any excess water and pour the cooked sorghum into a serving bowl. Pour in all of the dressing, all of the cherry tomatoes and their juices, the arugula*, feta, Parmesan and chickpeas (optional). Toss well and serve.
Make it vegan/dairy free: Omit the cheese.
*Storage suggestions: If you won't be serving all of the salad in one sitting, store the arugula separately from the rest of the salad and mix the arugula into the sorghum salad just when you're ready to serve. The sorghum salad should keep well, covered and refrigerated with the arugula stored separately, for a couple of days. Serve cold or reheat the sorghum before tossing in the arugula.
Change it up: Feel free to substitute cooked pasta (penne, spirals or pearl couscous would be good) or another whole grain for the sorghum (farro, wheat berries, quinoa, millet).
Prepare in advance: You can pre-cook the sorghum and reheat it just before adding the roasted cherry tomatoes and everything else. I bet that extra sorghum would freeze well, if you want to make extra for later.
If you love this recipe: You'll also love my caprese pasta salad, Mediterranean pasta salad with raw squash and feta and quinoa tabouli.

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Bob’s Red Mill and I was compensated for recipe development. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Cookie and Kate!


  1. Christianna says

    Thank you Kate! Try as I might, I just don’t like quinoa so I have been looking for a “new” gluten free grain to add into my rotation. I love farro and wheat berries because of their texture so I’m going to give this a try for sure!

  2. says

    Yes, I really could use something other than couscous or quinoa! Not that I mind, but this sounds like a much-needed change-up. Glad you got to develop a recipe for it, I’m sold! Thanks for sharing, Kate!

  3. says

    These tomatoes look so delicious! I have some on my counter that are going to meet a similar fate now.
    I don’t think I’ve ever eaten sorghum, but I definitely remember my uncles feeding it to their cows. I am intrigued by the idea, as well as the relatively cheap price!

  4. says

    I have never seen sorghum before and I am quite sure that it’s not available in Russia, but it’s always interesting to learn smth new. Amazing recipe, Katie, I will def try it with quinoa, thank you for the idea!

  5. Ellen Pollak says

    I am constantly surprised: all these people who are obviously interested in food and cooking have never heard of sorghum? Where have they been? Are they terribly young? Like babies? My grandchildren, all 10 of ’em all are comfortable in the kitchen, males as well as females. And I am referring to REAL everyday cooking! Some of them also bake but both my daughters-in-law & my daughter trusted their husbands to cook for as well as bathe, dress, read stories to, comfort when hurt etc. my grandchildren when they had to go out of town on business. Now the oldest 6 grandchildren are adults. They are lawyers, doctors, teachers & artists. 2 are married and at the next family wedding (this July) I am going to ask them if they’ve heard of sorghum. And have they cooked it? I’ll let you know what I find out!!

    • says

      I’m looking forward to those answers, Ellen! I’ve heard my dad mention sorghum as a crop, but I’d never cooked it until recently.

  6. says

    Never tried sorghum either, but you’ve definitely convinced me to some time. I would definitely add the optional chickpeas. Another simple but super tasty salad – my favourite kind!

  7. Mary Hicken says

    I’m another reader who has never eaten this. I do plan on trying it soon though.
    Can you tell me if sorghum is high in protein like Quinoa?

  8. says

    Oh my, this is gorgeous! And thank you SO much for the 411 on sorghum! I have seen sorghum flour in the past, but not the whole grain itself. I need something for my “Try Something New Tuesday” feature next week, and I think you’ve just helped me decide what that is. Thanks Kate! :)

  9. says

    This salad sounds lovely and refreshing, and sorghum sounds super interesting! Anything that resembles Israeli couscous can definitely hang out in my kitchen. I’m going to have to keep an eye out for it the next time I need to replenish the grain supply.

  10. says

    I’ve never eaten sorghum but I’ve seen it in health food shops. Nice to see that Bob’s have sorghum in their amazing range also! Love the ingredients that you’ve combined with it… roasted cherry tomatoes have become one of my recent fave things. The colours are fabulous! x

  11. says

    Sorghum is very popular here and we often make flatbreads from sorghum flour and eat with garlic and onion chutney. I loveeeee this idea of transforming it into a salad! I’ve never eaten sorghum in its whole form and cannot wait to give this a try! :)

  12. says

    Not to sound like a broken record, but I have never tried sorghum either. I’m always looking for new grains to cook with though! Roasted cherry tomatoes are one of my favorite things ever, so I know that I would love this salad :)

  13. says

    I’ve never had this before but I’m going to go searching my small-town groceries for Sorghum! Thanks for the recipe. It looks delicious!

  14. says

    I’ve been using lots of sorghum flour in GF baked goods–it works AMAZING at replicating a true gluten-y texture, especially in muffins. I’ve seen this on the shelf, and now that I’ve been equipped with a recipe I may just have to try it! Great idea on subbing for cous cous.

    • says

      Cool! I’m glad to know that sorghum flour works well in baked goods. I’m going to mention that to my GF baker friends!

  15. Kathleen says

    Can I just say I think it’s awesome that you have a post sponsored by Bob’s Red Mill because I actually love them. Love their products, love their history.

  16. says

    Yummy! I’ve just started using sorghum flour in my cooking, but I’ve never tried the whole grass/grass seed (?) (whatever) before. I will have to try and find it in my local health food shop because everything about this recipe is calling my name! Thanks Kate :)

  17. says

    I’ve never seen Sorghum here in the UK before, but I had heard of it before. When I work out the best substitution for arugula is (also doesn’t exist over here) ill make it with cous cous tho! And I admire you for growing your own! I hate gardening and am perfectly happy buying my produce from the store.

  18. Rachel says

    My sorghum is currently cooking right now and I’m so excited to try it!! I’m doing a green bean, chickpea, scallion & parsley salad with your lemon tahini dressing I found on an old post. If you see it on IG later consider it a success ;)

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