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20-Minute Lemon Spinach Orzo Salad

  • Author: Chew Out Loud
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 8 mins
  • Total Time: 18 mins
  • Yield: 8 1x
  • Category: side, salad
  • Method: stovetop
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

Nothing is as refreshingly delicious as a bowl of Lemon Spinach Orzo Salad during the spring and summer months. Perfect for lunch at work, a light dinner, or for a picnic.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 cup dry orzo pasta
  • 5 TB fresh lemon juice
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 3 TB extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 tsp pure honey
  • 1 tsp coarse ground or whole seed mustard
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 shallot, chopped
  • 4 cups baby spinach leaves
  • 1 cup diced/sliced cucumber
  • 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese
  • Optional: 1/2 cup crumbed bacon, 1/2 cup toasted nuts (almonds or pecans work well)

Instructions

  1. In a heavy pot of well-salted water, cook orzo just until al dente. Drain and rinse; Toss with 1 TB olive oil to prevent sticking; set aside.
  2. While orzo is cooking, make the dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, zest, 2 TB olive oil, honey, mustard, kosher salt, pepper, garlic, and shallots (dressing can also be made ahead of time; cover and keep chilled until ready to use.)
  3. Gently toss dressing with orzo. Add remaining ingredients and gently toss to combine well. Sprinkle with bacon and/or nuts, if desired.

Notes

Dressing can be made 1-2 days ahead of time and chilled in airtight container. 

Keywords: Lemon Spinach Orzo Salad