This Mediterranean Orzo Salad recipe is light, flavorful, and ready in just 20 minutes! Serve it as the main course, or it makes the perfect side to accompany any dish!
Do you love Mediterranean-inspired recipes as much as I do? Try these Beef Gyros, Hummus, or Chicken Shawarma Bowls!
Why I love this recipe:
- Quick – This Orzo Pasta Salad is ready to serve in just 20 minutes! Nothing beats 30-Minute Meals in the summer!
- Versatile – Since it has cooked chicken, I like to enjoy it as a light lunch or dinner with a side salad or slice of artisan bread, but it compliments practically any main dish so I often take it to BBQ’s and potlucks. I also love to omit the chicken and serve it with baked salmon or grilled shrimp.
- Fun Flavors: I’m obsessed with the unique flavor combinations in this Mediterranean orzo salad (the fresh tarragon is the star, so don’t skip it!). This is my favorite recipe for meal prep lunches.
How to make Orzo Pasta Salad:
Cook Pasta and Make Dressing: Cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain well and set aside to cool. Stir dressing ingredients together in a bowl.
Pour Dressing over cooled orzo pasta and stir to combine.
Combine: Add remaining ingredients to the salad bowl.
Serve: Toss salad to combine and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Serve this Mediterranean Orzo Salad with my Burrata salad, or Artisan No Knead Bread.
Make Ahead and Freezing Instructions:
To Make Ahead: You can make this Orzo Salad 1-2 days in advance, although I recommend waiting to add the dressing until just before serving.
To Store: Leftovers can be stored for for a few days in the refrigerator. I love to meal prep this salad for easy lunch during the week.
- Tarragon Substitute: White wine vinegar would work as a substitute for tarragon.
- Gluten Free: Substitute your favorite bite-size gluten free pasta.
- Veggies: Feel free to chop up summer veggies from your garden and toss them in! Diced cucumbers and bell peppers would taste delicious.
- Shrimp Orzo Salad: The chicken can be swapped out for cooked shrimp.
- Add-Ins: This orzo pasta salad is perfect to customize to your own preferences, feel free to add in chickpeas or sprinkle this orzo salad with feta cheese before serving.
More Salad Recipes:
- Ambrosia Salad
- Thai Quinoa Salad
- Lentil Salad
- Burrata Salad
- Pesto Pasta Salad
- Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad
- Brussels Sprouts Salad
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Orzo Pasta Salad
Orzo Pasta Salad:
- 1 lb orzo pasta
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes , halved
- 14 oz artichoke hearts , canned, drained and chopped
- 2/3 cup Kalamata olives , pitted and chopped
- 2/3 cup dried Craisins
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons capers
- 3 cups cooked chicken , chopped
- 1 cup olive oil
- 1/3 cup tarragon vinegar*
- 3 Tablespoons fresh tarragon , chopped
- 1 ½ Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 ½ Tablespoons dijon mustard
- Cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain well and set aside to cool.
- Combine dressing ingredients in a bowl and stir well to combine. Pour dressing over cooled orzo pasta and stir to combine.
- Add remaining ingredients and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
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I have a couple of bottles of atichoke hearta that I was wondering how I can use them in a recipe, so I am glad to come across this recipe. I love the idea of using small orzo pasta in a salad. I find the larger pasta uses a lot of dressing and it seems like orzo would just be so much prettier, too.I also have some fregola pasta, which is very small, that I am thinking I might try.Just love these summer salads!
I made this without the chicken (forgot to defrost it! 😂)
It’s a lot of interesting textures and flavors that work surprisingly well together! I’ll be making this one again for sure!