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The Best Mediterranean Salad is Here

Do you know those people who always bring the best food to potlucks? You know, the ones that everyone secretly wants to be friends with because of their excellent taste in food and their ability to create such delicious dishes? That’s what this Mediterranean orzo salad is: it’s the potluck dish you want to be known for.

It comes together fast, and the bold Mediterranean flavors make this the ultimate pasta salad! The best part is that it has simple-to-find fresh ingredients and a quick homemade Greek vinaigrette. It’s very flexible, and you won’t even have to measure after making it once or twice. This simple yet memorable orzo-based side dish recipe is packed with fresh and zesty flavors from tomatoes, Kalamata olives, feta cheese, capers, and fresh parsley dressed in a zingy Lemon Dressing. It’s great warm or cold, so feel free to make it ahead of time if you need more time on game day—or plan on doubling the recipe because you’ll eat half of it out of the mixing bowl – it is so good! Simple yet incredible.

  • Author: Kim Nicholson

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 cup uncooked orzo
  • One 15-ounce can of chickpeas, drained
  • 1 1/2 cups crumbled feta cheese, plus more for topping
  • 1 red onion, diced chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups red grape, cherry tomatoes, or yellow grape tomatoes, mix it up 
  • 34 mini cucumbers (or 1/2 English cucumber) chopped
  • 1 1/2 cup Kalamata olives pitted & halved or green olives; I love to mix it up
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano; fresh oregano is incredible too
  • 4 T shelled pistachios
  • 2 T capers
  • 3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley, plus more for topping (optional)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the Lemon Dressing:

  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 clove of garlic minced

Instructions

Cook orzo al dente according to package directions. Drain and rinse with cold water.

Prep your other ingredients.

Once the orzo has cooled, add all ingredients to a large bowl.

Next, shake up the bright and tangy Lemon Dressing that will dress the orzo salad. To a mason jar with a tight-fitting lid, add fresh lemon juice, garlic, honey, extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper then shake to combine.

Notes

  • If you are not a fan of olives, you can leave them out.
  • To make this salad vegan, don’t include the feta, or replace it with a plant-based alternative.
  • Other ingredients that would go great in this versatile salad are green or red bell peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, artichoke hearts, spinach, and arugula!

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