View Full Version : Cold orzo salads

05-17-2004, 10:52 AM
Looking for recipes for cold (or room temp) orzo salads. My current favorite is cooked/cooled orzo w/ Italian salad dressing, chopped cucumbers, red peppers, black olives, feta, & fresh parsley or basil.
Any one else have some simple favorites?

05-17-2004, 11:11 AM
Haven't made it in a long time but love one that has spinach, pine nuts, garlic, halved grape tomatoes, and feta cheese w/ olive oil. Don't remember the exact measurements off the top of my head but everyone raves about it.

05-17-2004, 11:37 AM
I love this one with lemon:

Lemony Orzo Salad

1 cup uncooked orzo (rice-shaped pasta)
1 1/3 cups diced zucchini
1/3 cup diced red onion
1/3 cup minced fresh parsley
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon minced fresh or 1 teaspoon dried basil
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 teaspoons minced fresh mint
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup diced tomato
1/3 cup (1 1/2 ounces) crumbled feta cheese
2 tablespoons chopped pitted kalamata olives

Cook orzo according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain well. Combine orzo, zucchini, and onion in a large bowl; toss well. Combine parsley and next 6 ingredients (parsley through pepper); stir well with a whisk. Stir into orzo mixture; add tomato, cheese, and olives, tossing gently to coat.

Yield: 6 servings (serving size: 3/4 cup)

TEST ; CALORIES 199 (% from fat); CALORIESFROMFAT 22%; TEST ; FAT 4.8g (test , satfat 1.5g, test ); MONOFAT 2.3g; TEST ; POLYFAT 0.6g; TEST ; PROTEIN 6.7g; TEST ; CARBOHYDRATE 32.7g; TEST ; FIBER 1.8g; TEST ; CHOLESTEROL 6mg; TEST ; IRON 2.1mg; TEST ; SODIUM 307mg; TEST ; CALCIUM 58mg;
Cooking Light, MARCH 2000

05-17-2004, 12:13 PM
I made up one for a potluck last week. I cooked about 2/3 package orzo in salted water, drained, and rinsed immediately in cold water until cool to keep them from sticking. When well-drained a drizzled about 1 Tbsp olive oil on the pasta and tossed thoroughly. In the meantime, I had roasted 1 bunch asparagus, sliced diagonally in i-inch slices, 1/2 a red bell pepper in small chunks, and 8 oz baby portabellas, thickly sliced, sprayed with olive oil cooking spray before putting in the oven. I tossed together the pasta and the vegetables, adding a can of artichoke heart quarters, drained. The dressing was 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar, 2 Tbsp dijon mustard, 1 tsp dried basil, 2 generous pinches of sugar, freshly-ground salt & pepper.

It was a hit -- it was the only dish that was eaten up completely.

05-17-2004, 01:36 PM
I love, love, love this salad. I often add chicken to it as well.

(this is a re-post!)

This is a Barefoot Contessa recipe I saw on the TV show. I made few changes with the veggies (zuccini instead of eggplant and added mushrooms). Just the pasta, dressing and veggies alone is pretty good (totally cut back on the oil, there was so much from the veggies, more than a couple tbls was too much for the dressing), the addition of green onion and feta (and I threw in some roasted chicken too) was outstanding. I've been eating it for lunch for the past few days, and it's still great.

It would be perfect for a lunchon or BBQ this summer too

Orzo with Rasted Veggies (Barefoot Contessa)

1 small eggplant, peeled and 3/4-inch diced
1 red bell pepper, 1-inch diced
1 yellow bell pepper, 1-inch diced
1 red onion, peeled and 1-inch diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/3 cup good olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 pound orzo or rice-shaped pasta

For the dressing:
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (2 lemons)
1/3 cup good olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

To assemble:
4 scallions, minced (white and green parts)
1/4 cup pignolis, toasted
3/4 pound good feta, 1/2-inch diced (not crumbled)
15 fresh basil leaves, cut into julienne

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Toss the eggplant, bell peppers, onion, and garlic with the olive oil, salt, and pepper on a large sheet pan. Roast for 40 minutes, until browned, turning once with a spatula.

Meanwhile, cook the orzo in boiling salted water for 7 to 9 minutes, until tender. Drain and transfer to a large serving bowl. Add the roasted vegetables to the pasta, scraping all the liquid and seasonings from the roasting pan into the pasta bowl.

For the dressing, combine the lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper and pour on the pasta and vegetables. Let cool to room temperature, then add the scallions, pignolis, feta, and basil. Check the seasonings, and serve at room temperature. (Although, it's good cold as well)

05-17-2004, 01:37 PM
This is my favorite. SO good!

* Exported from MasterCook *

Orzo Salad with Chickpeas, Dill, and Lemon

Recipe By :Cooking Light Magazine. August 2002. Page: 130.
Serving Size : 4 Preparation Time :0:00
Categories : MeatlessSalads

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
1 cup uncooked orzo (rice-shaped pasta)
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions
1/2 cup (2 ounces) crumbled feta cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
1 can (19-ounce) chickpeas (garbanzo beans),
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon cold water
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon bottled minced garlic

The bright flavor of this salad pairs well with a crisp romaine-mint side salad. If you're not a big dill fan, use half the amount. Quick-cooking couscous can replace the orzo.

Total time: 30 minutes

1. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain and rinse with cold water; drain.

2. Combine pasta, onions, cheese, dill, and chickpeas in a large bowl, tossing gently to combine.

3. Combine juice and remaining ingredients in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Drizzle over pasta mixture; toss gently to coat. Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1-1/4 cups).

05-17-2004, 05:58 PM
I love the Black Bean and Orzo salad from several years back. I actually just made it again on the weekend. I don't know why, but DH always keeps calling the orzo RICE. :rolleyes:

* Exported from MasterCook *

Black Bean-and-Orzo Salad

Recipe By :
Serving Size : 6 Preparation Time :0:00
Categories : Cooking Light 1994 Salads

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
3 1/2 cups cooked orzo -- (rice-shaped pasta)
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped purple onion
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
15 ounces black beans -- drained
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon pepper
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 cloves garlic -- minced

Combine first 6 ingredients in a large bowl; toss well, and set aside.

Combine red wine vinegar and next 7 ingredients in a bowl, and stir well.

Pour over orzo mixture, and toss well. Cover and chill.

(serving size: 1 cup)

"Cooking Light, Sept 1994, page 134"
" Cooking Light"

05-17-2004, 09:36 PM
How timely! I made this salad for lunch (and dinner...) today, and it was really great. I wish I hadn't halved it! It's a very light, springy, garlickly, yummy salad that's easy to put together. It's from Weight Watcher's Take out Tonight. I made the pesto, too, which was actually really tasty. I liked it without all of the oil, which surprised me. Usually I love my pesto swimming in oil.

Pesto Shrimp and Orzo Salad
4 servings

1 cup orzo
4 cups bite-size broccoli florets
1/3 cup fat-free mayonnaise
3 T prepared pesto (see below)
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/2 pound cooked shrimp, cut into bite-size pieces

Cook the orzo according to package directions; drain, reserving 2 T of the cooking liquid in a cup. Rinse the orzo under cool water until lukewarm, then drain well.

Put the broccoli in a steamer basket; set in a saucepan over 1 inch of boiling water. Cover tightly and steam the broccoli until bright green and crisp-tender, about 2 minutes. Rinse under cool water until lukewarm, then drain well.

Stir the mayonnaise, pesto, the 2 T of reserved cooking water, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Add the orzo, broccoli, and shrimp; toss to coat.

per serving (1 1/2 cups): 306 Cal, 7 g fat, 114 mg Chol, 40 g carb, 3 g fiber, 22 g protein, POINTS: 6.

1 1/2 cups lightly packed fresh basil leaves
2 T pine nuts, toasted
2 T low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, sliced
1/4 tsp salt

Puree the ingredients in a blender or food processor until a smooth paste is formed.

05-18-2004, 11:18 AM
Originally posted by funnybone
[B]I love the Black Bean and Orzo salad from several years back. I actually just made it again on the weekend. I don't know why, but DH always keeps calling the orzo RICE. :rolleyes:


Oh my does this sound fabulous!! I'm going to make this for my bbq party i'm having on June 5. Going to replace the pasta salad I was going to make. I guess I will quadruple it for 35+ people?? Since I will be making a potato salad also. Thanks funnybone!


05-18-2004, 11:19 AM

05-20-2004, 11:59 AM
I sort of made the Black Bean and Orzo Salad last night. Our tomatoes are getting ripe very fast, so I subbed tomato for the red bell pepper. Didn't have any orzo so I used barley, and subbed cilantro for the parsley. YUM-excellent-a keeper for sure. I can't believe I've never made this recipe before.