Mediterranean Orzo Salad
Each bite of this Mediterranean Orzo Salad is packed with fresh veggies, perfectly cooked orzo pasta, protein-packed chickpeas and mouthwatering Greek salad dressing. Serve it as a side dish, a light lunch, or at a potluck to really impress!
Mediterranean Orzo Salad
If you’re already a fan of my famous Mediterranean Chickpea Salad, then you’re really going to love this Mediterranean orzo salad too! It’s got all of the delicious key ingredients that give it that classic Mediterranean flavor, and it’s tossed up with delicious orzo. I’ve been told before that orzo is actually healthier than other rices, but even if it wasn’t, I’d still be obsessed. It’s the perfect base for this flavorful salad recipe!
I’m not a picky eater, so I really love all of the different flavors and textures in this mediterranean orzo salad. There’s so much going on, yet it all blends together so perfectly! The juicy grape tomatoes, potent red onions, bold olives and crunchy cucumber slices are just a few of my favorite ingredients that make this salad so irresistible. A great thing about this medley is also how customizable it is! You can omit or add ingredients as you see fit while still enjoying a truly tasty dish.
Of all the ingredients I love in this salad, the most important one if the homemade Easy Greek Salad Dressing. Please do not go through the effort of making this beautiful Mediterranean orzo salad just to toss it with a store-bought bottle of dressing! The store-bought stuff really can’t hold a candle to my homemade salad dressing recipe. Homemade dressing is ten times more fresh and delicious, and it really elevates the entire dish. Plus, it’s wonderfully easy to make!
How to Make It
Cook the orzo. Cook the orzo according to package directions. Drain and cool to room temperature. Be very careful not to over or under cook the orzo! Since it’s the base of this salad recipe, it’s important to get it just right.
Toss. Transfer the orzo to a large mixing bowl and add the chickpeas, cucumber, tomatoes, red onion, manzanilla olives, black olives, parsley and mint, if using. The mint is optional, but HIGHLY recommended! Toss to combine.
Coat. Pour the dressing over the salad and stir to coat.
Chill. Cover and chill for 30 minutes before serving.
Stir and serve. Right before serving, stir the salad to redistribute any dressing that may have settled at the bottom of the bowl.
How long will Mediterranean orzo salad stay fresh?
In an airtight container in the refrigerator, this orzo salad will stay fresh for about 2-3 days. Just remember that before enjoying your refrigerated leftovers to stir the salad and redistribute the juices, just like you initially did before first serving.
What should I serve with this pasta salad?
Like I mentioned earlier, I like this orzo salad all by itself sometimes! It makes a wonderful light lunch that’s filling enough to get me through the day without slowing me down.
However, this salad really shines when it’s paired with a delicious main entrée. So far, I’ve plated this salad with grilled proteins like shrimp, steak, and chicken, and it’s always a hit. If you like that this is a vegetarian salad and want to keep it that way, you can pair it with some Crispy Baked Tofu!
How does the mint taste in this salad?
Have you ever tasted so much mint in a dish that it feels like you’re brushing your teeth? Yuck! Thankfully, the mint in this orzo salad does nothing more than help bring out the other bold flavors even more. It’s an herbaceous addition that I love sprinkling right on top of my salad! Just be careful not to add more than about a fourth of a cup, though, or it’ll be all that you’re tasting.
Pasta salad is so much better than normal salad, right? Here are a few more of my favorites!
Get the Recipe: Mediterranean Orzo Salad Recipe
- 1 pound Orzo Pasta
- 1 15 ounce can Chickpeas, rinsed and drained well
- 1 English Cucumber, Chopped
- 2 cups grape tomatoes, sliced in half
- 1/2 cup diced red onion
- 1/2 cup sliced manzanilla olives
- 1/2 cup sliced black olives
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh mint, optional
- 1 cup Greek Salad Dressing
- Cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain and cool to room temperature.
- Transfer the pasta to a large mixing bowl and add the chickpeas, cucumber, tomatoes, red onion, manzanilla olive, black olive, parsley and mint, if using. Toss to combine.
- Pour the dressing over the salad and stir to coat.
- Cover and chill for 30 minutes before serving.
- Right before serving, stir the salad to redistribute any dressing that may have settled at the bottom of the bowl.