I am addicted to orzo pasta. Maybe it’s the shape or the texture?? I have an Orzo Artichoke Pasta Salad that I make all the time and I can’t get enough of it!
As I was buying ingredients to make it yet AGAIN, I decided to switch things up and make a Mediterranean version of this favorite salad. And I have to say that I love it.
And the best part of this salad? It gets better the longer you refrigerate it (up to a certain point of course LOL). I do like it even better the day after. It lets the juices settle in and it is even more flavorful!
Here’s the easy recipe:
- 1 box of Orzo pasta, cook al dente
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 1 medium red onion, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1.5 pints of cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
- 8 oz. ex. small artichoke hearts (you can add these whole or cut them up)
- 3 Tablespoons Capers, drained
- 1/2-1 cup of pitted Kalamata Olives
- 1 teaspoon Sea Salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper or lemon pepper is good too (to taste)
- 1 cup Butter Lettuce, torn (optional)
- 1/2 cup Feta Cheese
- 1 Large bunch of Basil, chopped - reserve a few leaves to garnish the salad
- If you want to add protein — you can add some cooked and sliced chicken breast
- Cook Orzo according to directions
- Drain, reserving about 1 cup of the pasta water. Pour the reserved liquid back in with the orzo. This liquid helps create a “sauce” when the other ingredients are added.
- In large skillet, heat 1/4 cup olive oil over medium-high heat.
- Add onion and cook until the onion becomes transparent.
- Then add garlic and cook for about 1 minute.
- Add chicken if you are going to use it, artichoke hearts, capers and cook about 4-6 minutes — take off the heat.
- Add pasta and stir in the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil, tomatoes and basil, chopped.
- Season with salt and pepper to your taste.
- Once cooled, add butter lettuce and garnish with basil.
- Serve this dish warm, room temperature, or I even prefer it the next day straight out of the refrigerator. You can even add some chopped romaine lettuce to the salad once it’s cooled and it makes a wonderful green/pasta salad.
You can’t go wrong!!
And here’s a link to the other Orzo Pasta Salad that I love:
And another family favorite is this Springtime Pasta Salad:
Have a wonderful day!
Let me know how this recipe goes for you — and if you’ve made any variations I’d love to try them!