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Cold Orzo Pasta Salad Recipe With Tomatoes and Feta Cheese
Have you tried the pasta salad? Let us know what you think!
Cold pasta salad is a classic, easy, healthy summer dish. This recipe is designed to be a side dish, but with the addition of another ingredient or two, it can easily become a main dish. The vinaigrette, lemon juice, and feta cheese give it lots of flavor, and the tomato and pepper give it added color and nutrition. Once you've tried your hand at a few pasta salad recipes, you'll be able to customize them to fit your tastes and preferences however you like.
Are you serving a larger group of people?
Simply double or even triple this recipe.
You can substitute any of the following for the orzo.
Alternatives to Orzo
Another egg or whole wheat pasta
White or brown rice
- 6 oz. (half a box) orzo pasta, uncooked
- 1/2 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
- 1/2 of one red, orange, or yellow pepper
- generous sprinkling of feta cheese
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinaigrette dressing
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice, fresh squeezed or bottled
- 1 avocado, sliced
You can easily add meat to this dish!
Just a Few Options
Thinly sliced, grilled pork
Any type of cooked sausage, sliced
Canned or fresh, seared tuna
Baked or fried tilapia
- Cook the orzo according to the directions on the box. After you've cooked and drained it, rinse it with cold water.
- While the pasta is cooking, chop the tomatoes and pepper.
- Combine the orzo and vegetables in a large bowl. Add the lemon juice, feta cheese, and vinaigrette dressing. Mix well.
- Ideally refrigerate for at least a couple hours or overnight before serving. You can serve it right away, but refrigerating it for a few hours will give the flavors a chance to combine more.
- When you're ready to eat the pasta salad, slice the avocado and serve it along side the salad. Alternatively, you can chop it and mix it right in the salad.
A side of sauteed vegetables will complete this summer meal.
Tip: Look for seasonal vegetables. You can customize this dish to fit the current time of year.
Alternative: I sauteed my vegetables in a pan on the stove, but you can easily grill them in a foil packet or bake them in the oven.
Grilling Vegetables with Herbs
Sauteed vegetables are a perfect compliment for this summer meal. I sauteed the following vegetables as pictured above:
2 large portobella mushrooms
1 yellow squash
Wash and chop all of your vegetables. Coat a large frying pan with a couple tablespoons of olive oil. Add your vegetables and a few dashes of salt and pepper to the pan. Cook the vegetables, stirring regularly, for 7-8 minutes or until they are cooked through.
As this comes together fairly quickly, you can start preparing it 10-15 minutes before you're ready to serve the orzo salad.
Are you looking for more vegetable ideas? Cara has a great list of vegetables in this article.
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More Orzo Pasta Salad Recipes
If you enjoy orzo pasta salad, you may also enjoy one or more of the following recipes.
- Orzo Salad with Artichokes, Tomatoes, Chickpeas, Feta, and Lemon Basil Dressing. This is a similar recipe with artichokes and chickpeas. The lemon juice goes into the lemon basil dressing. Cooking the orzo in broth will give it extra moisture.
- Strawberry & Broccoli Orzo Pasta Salad with Lemon Poppy Seed Vinaigrette. Go for another classic summer food combination with strawberries and broccoli. This time the vinaigrette has poppy seeds.
- Orzo Caprese Salad in Tomato Cups. If you love caprese salad, this one is for you. I love the idea of serving it in tomato cups. That is such a great serving option for so many different salads.
- Grilled Salmon Orzo Salad. Grilled salmon is the perfect compliment for a light pasta salad.
- Orzo Chicken Salad. If you weren't sure how to create a great chicken addition to your orzo pasta, you're in luck.
- Mexican Orzo Pasta Salad. If you like the avocado addition to my recipe and are looking to take it one step further, this is for you.
- Mediterranean Orzo Salad. This is a nice take on the Greek version with a citrus dressing.
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Complete your meal with a summer drink!
- Sangria Recipe with Red Wine
Sangria is an easy, delicious summer beverage that you can enjoy any time during the summer. This recipe includes red wine and brandy.
- Iced Tea Drink Recipes
Make your own iced tea at home with one of these great recipes. There are classic recipes as well as winning combinations, fruit teas, international recipes, and alcoholic options.
- Iced Coffee Drink Recipes
Are you looking for an iced coffee recipe? Make a delicious classic, sweet, seasonal, international, blended, or alcoholic coffee drink right at home.