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Orzo pasta salad recipe

Orzo pasta salad recipe


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  • Recipes
  • Dish type
  • Salad
  • Pasta salad

A lovely pasta salad made with orzo, spinach, tomatoes and feta. Add pine nuts or sunflower seeds for a bit of a crunch.

1 person made this

IngredientsServes: 4

  • 225g orzo pasta
  • 200g cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 75-100g spinach, washed and chopped
  • 150g feta, crumbled
  • 1 or 2 tablespoons pine nuts or sunflower seeds
  • 50ml olive oil
  • 50ml balsamic vinegar
  • a handful fresh basil leaves, torn
  • salt and pepper

MethodPrep:15min ›Cook:10min ›Ready in:25min

  1. Cook the orzo pasta according to the instructions on the package; drain and rinse with cold water. Transfer orzo pasta to a salad bowl.
  2. Stir in chopped spinach and cherry tomatoes. Add the feta, oil, balsamic vinegar, fresh basil and pine nuts; mix well and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  3. Chill salad in fridge for at least 1 hour; serve cold or at room temperature.

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Mediterranean Orzo Salad

Mediterranean Orzo Salad is a simple vegetarian side dish recipe that's packed with fresh and zesty flavors.

This post may contain affiliate links.

The thought of grilling season on the horizon has me dreaming of picnic and BBQs recipes, so I whipped up this awesome little side dish to serve at any spring or summer get together – Mediterranean Orzo Salad!

This simple, orzo-based side dish is packed with fresh and zesty flavors from tomatoes, kalamata olives, feta cheese, capers, fresh parsley, and a zingy Lemon Dressing, plus it’s great warm or cold.

This is the perfect side to serve with grilled chicken, fish, or steak. Totally addicting, too, so grab a fork and get ready to dig in!

How to Make Mediterranean Orzo Salad:

Start the Mediterranean Orzo Salad with 6oz orzo (gluten-free if you need it) which is pasta that kind of looks like rice. It’s a great little shape for side dishes! Cook the orzo in salted, boiling water until al dente, then drain and set aside to cool off for a bit.

Roasted Balsamic Butternut Squash

Meanwhile, whip up the Lemon Dressing that will dress the pasta salad. First add 1/4 cup lemon juice and lots of salt and pepper into a food processor or bowl, then add 1 teaspoon honey, and 1 clove garlic (minced if you’re going the bowl/whisk route). Process or whisk while slowly drizzling in 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil.

Taste then add more salt and pepper if necessary, and then set aside. You can make this ahead of time, FYI.

Next, to a large bowl add 1-1/2 cups grape or cherry tomatoes cut in half.

Plus 1/4 cup pitted kalamata olives, sliced into rings.

Followed by 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese.

Next add 1/4 cup chopped parsley.

and 2 Tablespoons capers. Just…yum.

Toss everything together with the cooked pasta and enough lemon dressing to coat then serve immediately or pop into the fridge until you’re ready to eat. I hope you love this light and flavor packed side dish recipe – enjoy!


How to cook Orzo for salad?

When cooking orzo pasta for salad it is best to rinse the orzo first. This removes excess starches, if you don't the orzo may clump together.

Another, tip to stop it clumping together is to use plenty of water to boil the orzo in.

How long to cook orzo?

Once boiling, cook for 7-10 minutes. You can taste check it see when it is cooked. You want it to be fairly firm still, but not hard!

Once it is cooked drain immediately. Add the lemon and garlic olive oil dressing as soon as possible to prevent the orzo from sticking to itself.


Summer Orzo Pasta Salad

Summer is quickly approaching and this Summer Orzo Pasta Salad is the perfect way to celebrate. It is only April and I have already made it twice.

We have had a few 75 degree days, which is crazy but makes these salads a must.

Every time I have guests over and serve this salad it is a huge hit and almost always gone at the end of the meal.

Warm weather means lots of salads, especially pasta salads.

I find pasta salads, like this Summer Orzo Pasta Salad really easy to make and always a huge hit with guests.

When it comes to summer entertaining I know I like to make things as easy as possible with as little work to do as possible when my guests arrive.

This Summer Orzo Pasta Salad is easy to put together the day before or the morning of your party, leaving you with more time to enjoy your guests and the nice weather.

If I am not entertaining, I still like to make my pasta salads on Sundays when we grill out and then I eat the leftovers during the week for lunch.

They make the perfect quick and easy leftovers that pairs nicely with grilled chicken or salmon for extra protein.

This pasta salad recipe mixes orzo pasta , crumbled feta cheese, chickpeas, crisp summer vegetables, fresh herbs and is mixed with a red wine vinaigrette.

Orzo is one of my favorite things to add to side dishes and salads.

If you agree you should give this 4 Ingredient Cheesy Orzo or this Greek Orzo Pasta Salad a try too. I also love adding chickpeas to my salads for extra protein.

HOW TO MAKE THIS ORZO PASTA SALAD?

If you don&rsquot want a huge batch then just cut the recipe in half. Also, for the salad dressing the recipe will make about half of a quart size mason jar of dressing.

You will want this much if you plan to have leftovers or if you plan to make the salad ahead of time.

This salad really just involves chopping and prepping your ingredients, mixing it all together and adding the dressing. It is that easy!

I suggest when you make the salad, you add 1/4 cup of the dressing and then when you are ready to serve the salad, you add another 1/4 cup of dressing or more if you think it needs it.

The red wine vinaigrette is a very versatile dressing so it never hurts to have a extra on hand for other salads throughout the week.

I like to serve this salad in a large serving bowl like this one.

WHAT INGREDIENTS ARE IN THIS PASTA SALAD?

VEGETABLES: This salad uses fresh vegetables including tomatoes, cucumbers and red onion.

Feel free to add whatever fresh vegetables you have in your fridge. I love bell peppers, zucchini, carrots and celery if I have them.

FRESH HERBS: The fresh herbs are one of my favorite additions to this salad. I use fresh basil, mint and parsley, but feel free to use whatever herbs you like.

CHICKPEAS: One can of chickpeas add a nice texture and protein to this salad. Other ideas would be white beans or kidney beans.

CHEESE: I love the feta cheese in this orzo pasta salad but you can also use goat, sharp cheddar or whatever you like.

THE DRESSING: Homemade salad dressings take the salad to the next level. Feel free to dress this salad with your favorite dressing.


40 Best Orzo Recipes That Prove It's the Most Versatile Pasta

These work as sides, lunches, dinners, or even an afternoon snack.

When you're thinking of all the types of pasta out there, there's likely one little guy you're overlooking. While varieties like rigatoni, penne, and spaghetti tend to be the all-stars of the pasta world, we're here to make a case for one of the tiniest out there: orzo. Though you may have a few orzo recipes up your sleeve already, because it's often used in delicious pasta salads, we've rounded some other great dishes that make for easy dinners your family will love.

One of the best uses for orzo is tossing it in various soup recipes. Many Italian soups call for this type of pasta, so we've made sure to include several cozy bowls, like the Italian sausage orzo soup. Or, you could try one of the many side dishes or main courses listed. In particular, the garlic orzo shrimp scampi will make for a great weeknight meal. Ree Drummond loves a good orzo salad, so check out some of these pasta salads that would make for perfect barbecue sides like the Mediterranean orzo salad. It'll be gone in no time!

After reading through these delicious orzo recipes, one thing's for certain: You'll want to keep a box of it on hand at all times after you see just how versatile it is.


How many calories are in this Orzo Primavera Pasta Salad?

There are 213 calories per portion in this Orzo Primavera Pasta Salad, which means it falls into our Everyday Light category.

This Orzo Primavera Pasta Salad is perfect if you’re following a calorie controlled diet and fits well with any one of the major diet plans such as Weight Watchers.

As a guide, an average man needs around 2,500kcal (10,500kJ) a day to maintain a healthy body weight. For an average woman, that figure is around 2,000kcal (8,400kJ) a day. Obviously, if your goal is to lose weight then you might want to adjust these slightly! You can read more about these recommendations on the NHS website .


Orzo Pasta Salad with a Greek Spin

Though it looks a bit like rice, orzo isn’t a grain. It’s pasta!

This orzo salad is packed with flavor and is quite filling. I love the Greek twist on a classic. The brightness of the veggies and the creamy feta are just a perfect combo. And I love a good salad. It is a simple dish to whip up and is so refreshing.

Greek Orzo Salad is the perfect potluck, picnic or barbecue salad! It is great as a side or as a stand alone dish.

This Greek dressing is sure to make your go-to list. It is perfect on these orzo grains as it soaks in for extra flavor, but you are sure to find yourself whipping it up for more salad needs.


Grilled Vegetable and Orzo Salad

Equipment

Ingredients

  • ▢ 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil and/or parsley
  • ▢ 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest plus 2 tablespoons juice preferably organic
  • ▢ 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • ▢ 1 garlic clove minced
  • ▢ 1/2 teaspoon plus 1/8 teaspoon table salt plus salt for cooking pasta
  • ▢ 1/4 teaspoon plus 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • ▢ 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • ▢ 1 medium (10 oz) red onion peeled and sliced into 1/2‑inch-thick (12-mm) rounds
  • ▢ 2 red, orange or yellow bell peppers (14 oz | 400 g) stemmed, seeded, and quartered
  • ▢ 2 medium (14 oz) zucchini or summer squash* halved lengthwise
  • ▢ Mild vegetable oil spray
  • ▢ 1 cup orzo
  • ▢ 2 ounces feta or goat cheese crumbled (1/2 cup)

Directions

Notes

*What is a summer squash?

Show Nutrition

Recipe Testers' Reviews

This orzo salad with grilled vegetables is a fun idea for a warm pasta salad—not too much pasta, and loads of veggies. The dressing wasn't overpowering with the lemon, so next time I think I’ll take a half lemon and give it a little extra acid for the final toss with the goat cheese. I chose goat cheese over feta as I prefer its tanginess.

I made a dressing with 100% basil, and I’ll try a 50/50 blend next time, as the basil was quite pronounced. The char on the vegetables provided a subtle smoky flavor that makes this dish a great accompaniment to some sort of grilled meat or fish. I grilled up some Alaskan sablefish and that pairing was great.

This orzo salad with grilled vegetables was absolutely delicious and visually pleasing! A very fresh, summery, and light vegetable and pasta salad that is heavy on vegetables and flavor. My daughter and I enjoyed it for lunch but it would go beautifully with a lemony grilled chicken and a glass of crisp rosé for a nice summer meal.

I like a combination of herbs (basil and parsley but you could easily add others such as dill) for the dressing. For more efficient timing, I'd recommend starting the grill immediately and then prepping the vegetables and dressing while the grill preheats a grill pan would make easier work of this as well (you could avoid the slightly tricky act of skewering the thick onion slices). Using two different colored peppers (I used red and orange) adds vibrancy and artistic beauty to the dish. The crumbled feta on top gives the dish a slight tang and is the perfect final touch.

This orzo salad with grilled vegetables was a perfect addition to our Memorial Day dinner. The charred, grilled vegetables add such a difference and the lemony dressing is better than any bottled dressing you may typically use for a pasta salad. I chose to grill the vegetables the night before for convenience and finished assembling the next day. I tasted the salad right away and it was good at room temperature.

This would make a great vegetarian dinner (without the feta) with at least four generous servings. I chilled the salad for about 6 hours before serving and found the pasta had absorbed some of the dressing. I had saved 1/2 cup pasta water and added this before serving to loosen it up some. I'll make this all summer long. Easily served 8 for a generous side with fresh corn, smoked pork steaks, watermelon, and German chocolate pie for a great Memorial Day dinner.

This orzo salad with grilled vegetables is a great summertime salad. You can use your homegrown vegs or vegs from your CSA or a farmers’ market. The ratio of orzo to vegetables is perfect as is the amount of dressing. I served this with grilled salmon, which was a great way to use the full capacity of my gas grill without creating any extra heat or clean-up in the kitchen.

This salad would be a great accompaniment to any other grilled seafood as well as grilled poultry, pork, or beef. As a stand-alone dish, it would make a lovely lunch, perhaps served on a bed of lettuce. Be sure to allow time for the orzo to cool a bit to room temperature before serving. I found that allowing the assembled dish to rest for a while helped the flavors to meld.

HUNGRY FOR MORE?

#LeitesCulinaria. We'd love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.


Orange Orzo Salad with Almonds, Feta and Olives

First of all, I’m so excited that you’re so excited about the new Cookie + Kate app! I had no idea that you wanted an app so badly (why didn’t you tell me?!), but I’m happy that I have one for you now. Please tell your friends and family about the app, and I’ll add more recipes to it soon!

To celebrate, I’m sharing this fresh, bright and irresistible orzo salad recipe. It’s bursting with Mediterranean flavors—juicy orange, parsley, toasted almonds, crumbled feta and Kalamata olives.

I don’t use oranges nearly as often as I use lemon and lime, but this salad reminds me not to overlook those sweet, quiet oranges, especially while they’re in season.

This orzo salad was also a lesson in pasta salads. First lesson? You must rinse the pasta immediately after cooking it so it doesn’t get sticky and lopsided. Adding some of the starchy cooking water to the dressing adds body to the salad, while keeping the oil content in check.

Let the salad marinate for at least 10 minutes, so flavors have time to meld and the pasta has time to absorb some of the moisture. It doesn’t taste all that special until it’s had a little rest, and then it tastes spectacular. Trust me!

If you are an olive hater or raisin hater, just omit those parts. The salad still works well without them, although I like it best as written. You can also omit the feta to make this a vegan salad. It’s so good, however you make it.

This salad was inspired by a salad offered in the deli at a local grocery store called Hen House. Which is to suggest that it packs great for lunch (and picnics, I imagine), and keeps well for several days in the fridge.

As always, please let me know how you like it. If you’re looking for more fresh salads, here they are!


Orzo Pasta Salad

This orzo pasta salad with broccoli, bell pepper, red onion and chickpeas is a great summer side dish. It’s tossed in a lemony vinaigrette making it a fresh and light companion for grilled steak, chicken, or seafood. Make it ahead to let all the flavors marry together and serve it cold or at room temperature.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups Broccoli Florets
  • 1 cup Orzo
  • 2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
  • 1 Tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons Salt, Plus 1/2 Teaspoon Divided
  • ¼ teaspoons Black Pepper
  • ¼ cups Olive Oil
  • 1 whole Red Bell Pepper, Diced
  • ½ whole Red Onion, Finely Chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon Chopped Parsley
  • 16 ounces, weight Chickpeas, Drained.

Preparation

Place ice cubes and water in a medium-sized bowl.

Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add the broccoli florets and let them boil for 2 minutes. Scoop them out of the water and submerge them in the bowl with the ice and water to stop them cooking. Drain them and set them aside.

In the same pot that you used to blanch the broccoli, boil the orzo. There’s no need to change the water, just be sure and bring it back to a rolling boil and add 2 tablespoons of salt before adding the orzo. Cook the orzo according to package directions. While the orzo is boiling, chop the cooled broccoli florets into small pieces.

In a large bowl, combine the lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, ½ teaspoon salt and pepper. While whisking, slowly add the olive oil. Whisk until the oil is fully incorporated.

Drain the orzo and transfer it to the bowl with the dressing. Add the broccoli, bell pepper, red onion, chopped parsley, and chickpeas and toss well to combine.