Greek Orzo Salad is bursting with zesty, Mediterranean inspired flavors like crisp cucumber, juicy cherry tomatoes, red onion, olives, dill, mint and feta cheese. A simple red wine vinegar dressing brings it all together in less than 20 minutes making it the perfect side dish for summertime grilling!
One of my favorite things about summer is enjoying light and refreshing cold pasta dishes when cooking on the grill. Most cold pasta recipes can be conveniently made ahead of time and kept in the fridge until ready to serve.
Pasta is so versatile and it can be transformed so easily! Whether you’re looking for a Tex-Mex twist with a Southwest Pasta Salad or this Mediterranean style pasta salad, the possibilities are endless!
How to Make Greek Orzo Pasta
- Cook the orzo pasta in boiling water that has been salted. It should be “al dente” meaning it is still firm. If the pasta is overcooked it will be mushy and it won’t be able to hold up to all the added ingredients. Once the pasta is finished cooking, pour into a colander and rinse with cold water to help bring the temperature down quickly.
- While the pasta is boiling, chop the vegetables and herbs. Place the orzo and remaining ingredients into a large mixing bowl.
- In a small bowl, use a whisk to combine and emulsify the red wine vinegar, olive oil, honey, salt and pepper together. This can also be done in a blender but I find it’s just as easy to do this with a whisk and a little elbow grease! Another way to mix the dressing is to put the dressing ingredients into a mason jar, cover and shake until well blended.
- Pour the dressing over the pasta and toss everything together to make sure everything is coated evenly. Cover and let chill in the fridge for at least one hour before serving.
Tips for making Greek Orzo Salad:
- Make up to 2 days ahead of time and keep covered in the refrigerator. Give the salad a quick toss before serving.
- Make this a Meatless Monday meal by adding a can of drained and rinsed chickpeas.
- Serve alongside grilled chicken, steak or fish.
- Use only the best olive oil for the dressing! I prefer to use extra light virgin olive oil for a lighter taste.
- Adjust ingredients to your liking. Feel free to add more or less of each ingredient to suite your taste!
- Serve cold or at room temperature.
Orzo Pasta Salad
- 1.5 cups dry orzo pasta
- 1 cucumber, seeds removed and chopped
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1/4 cup black olives, pitted and sliced
- 1/4 cup kalamata olives, pitted and sliced
- 1/2 small red onion
- 1 cup fresh dill, chopped
- 1/2 cup fresh mint, chopped
- 1 cup feta cheese, crumbled
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- Cook the orzo in salted, boiling water until "al dente". Drain the orzo in a colander and run cold water over it to help cool faster.
- In a large bowl, combine the cooked orzo, cucumber, tomatoes, olives, red onion, dill, mint and feta cheese.
- In a small bowl, use a whisk to emulsify the olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper together. Pour over the orzo and toss to coat ingredients evenly.
- Cover and place in the refrigerator for one hour before serving.