There's nothing better than a light salad on a hot summer day. Try one of these summer orzo salads tonight!
Watermelon and Feta Orzo Salad
Nothing screams summer like a fresh slice of juicy watermelon. This summer orzo salad is not only refreshing and tasty, but packs a color punch.
- 1 cup orzo pasta
- 4 cups seeded, diced watermelon
- 4 cups firmly packed baby arugula
- 4 ounces crumbled feta cheese
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 shallot, minced
- 1 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup parsley
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Cook orzo according to the instructions on the package, drain, and place in large mixing bowl.
- Add lemon juice, shallot, olive oil, parsley, honey, and mustard to orzo. Toss well.
- Chill pasta mixture for at least three hours, and up to 24 hours.
- Remove pasta mixture from the refrigerator.
- Carefully toss watermelon, baby arugula, and feta cheese with pasta mixture.
- Season the pasta salad with salt and pepper to taste.
Creamy Chicken and Orzo Salad
Grilled chicken is a classic part of any summer barbeque. This year, let your grilled chicken shine by placing it front and center in this unique orzo salad.
- 1 1/2-cups orzo pasta
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1 1/2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon grated orange rind
- 4 cups grilled chicken breast, chopped
- 1 cup grapes, cut in half
- 1 medium-sized cantaloupe, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 3/4 cup unsalted cashews, coarsely chopped
- 1 head lettuce leaves, if desired
- Cook pasta according to the directions on the package, drain, and set aside.
- In large bowl, combine olive oil, orange juice, white wine vinegar, salt, and orange rind. Whisk until thoroughly mixed.
- Add grilled chicken to marinade mixture.
- Carefully toss cooked orzo, cantaloupe, grapes, and mayonnaise into chicken and marinade mixture.
- Chill orzo salad for at least four hours, and up to 24 hours.
- Before serving, stir cashews into orzo salad.
- Serve orzo salad over torn lettuce leaves, if desired.
Pea and Orzo Summer Salad
Packed with summer vegetables -- including sugar peas and zucchini -- this orzo salad is sure to please!
- 1/2 pound orzo
- 1 pound sugar peas, trimmed and cut in half
- 1 small yellow zucchini, cleaned and diced into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 small green zucchini, cleaned and sliced
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
- Add orzo to pot, and cook for five minutes.
- Add prepared peas and zucchini to pot.
- Cook for an additional three minutes, or until vegetables are crisp-tender and orzo is al dente.
- Drain pasta and vegetables, and place them in a large mixing bowl.
- Add lemon juice, olive oil, and Parmesan cheese to orzo mixture, and toss carefully.
- Season orzo salad with salt and pepper to taste.
Salads don't have to be boring. By using fresh ingredients and a little ingenuity, you can create a delicious summer orzo salad that will leave your guests begging for seconds.