Greek Orzo Salad is the perfect potluck, picnic or barbecue salad! Tender orzo pasta is tossed with fresh spinach, tomatoes, bell peppers, onion, olives, feta and drizzled with greek dressing.
At the request of my daughter, today I’m sharing with your the best orzo greek salad recipe!
As you nmay remember, Haileigh works at a local market that has a deli counter with a plethora of picnic salads. In fact, this macaroni salad was inspired by theirs. With that said, this greek orzo salad with spinach is H’s favorite and she has it for lunch on the weekends when she works on the regular. With fresh veggies like tomatoes, peppers, onions with brine-y olives and salty feta with the brightness of fresh herbs, it’s no wonder she loves it so much.
Because this salad is phenomenal and perfect with grilled chicken or fish!
To Make This Greek Orzo Salad You Will Need:
- orzo pasta – A fun rice shaped pasta that works great in pasta salad.
- sea salt – For seasoning pasta while it cooks.
- cherry tomatoes – Adds a burst of sweetness and acidity.
- bell peppers – To add color, crunch and flavor.
- red onion – Consider soaking in ice water to remove a lot of the bite.
- spinach – For a pop of deep green and added vitamins.
- kalamata olives – Gives this pasta salad that salty briny flavor.
- feta cheese – This adds a salty, tangy and creamy texture.
- fresh parsley – Adds an earthy herby flavor.
- dill – Adds a fresh herby flavor.
- homemade greek dressing – Rounds out this salad by adding lemon, garlic and richness from the olive oil.
First, bring a large pot of water to boil. Once boiling, stir in a palmful kosher salt (about 2 tablespoons) and add in the 1 pound of orzo pasta.
Follow package directions for cooking times, then drain and rinse under cold water. Doing this rinses off any of the starch clinging to the pasta, which in turn keeps the pasta from sticking together. It also halts any further cooking and cools the pasta down so you can quickly make the salad.
I only ever rinse pasta for cold salads. I believe it’s considered a culinary sin otherwise.
Meanwhile, prep the vegetables! Dice a small red and yellow bell pepper, finely dice 1 medium red onion, cut 1 pint cherry tomatoes in half, do the same with 1 cup pitted kalamata olives. Chop up 2 heaping cups of baby spinach and measure 1/4 cup chopped parsley, 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill herbs and crumble the feta cheese to get 1 cup.
Next, in a large mixing bowl, add the pasta, tomatoes, peppers, onions, kalamata olives, feta cheese, spinach and fresh parsley and dill, tossing to combine.
Then drizzle with some of the greek dressing, toss again and then cover with plastic wrap or a lid and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours.
Right before serving, drizzle with more of the dressing, taste-test and season with salt and pepper.
This orzo salad is so fresh and flavorful AND simple! It makes a lot which is great for feeding a crowd or meal prep!
How Long With This Greek Orzo Salad Last?
Store this salad in a container with a tight fitting lid in the fridge for 3 to 5 days.
Enjoy! And if you give this Greek Orzo Salad recipe a try, let me know! Snap a photo and tag me on twitter or instagram!
Greek Orzo Salad
- 1 pound orzo pasta
- sea salt, for pasta water
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 small red bell pepper, diced small
- 1 small yellow bell pepper, diced small
- 1 medium red onion, diced small
- 1 cup kalamata olives, pitted and halved
- 1 cup feta cheese, freshly crumbled, more or less to preference
- 2 cups (heaping) baby spinach, coarsely chopped
- 1 recipe greek salad dressing
- 1/4 cup parsley, chopped
- 2 tablespoons dill, chopped
- kosher salt, to taste
- black pepper, freshly ground, to taste
- Bring a pot of water to boil. Season the water with a small palmful of sea salt and add in the pasta. Stir and follow the package directions for cooking times. Once the pasta is cooked, drain and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking. Drain well.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine cooked pasta with halved cherry tomatoes, bell peppers, red onion, olives, feta, chopped spinach and fresh herbs.
- Drizzle with some of the dressing, toss to combine and refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Right before serving, toss with more dressing as desired. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
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THANK YOU in advance for your support!
Can this be frozen with the dressing already mixed in?
What is the liquid in the dressing ? There’s nothing listed.
Hi Deanne! Actually it is! It’s my Homemade Greek Dressing and it’s linked both in the post and in the printable recipe at the end of the post. Enjoy!
Wow! So not good. Too much orzo. Not enough Greek. Where are the cucumbers in the recipe! Will not make again.
Sorry to hear that, Jeff!
Loved this recipe!!! We made it to go along with steaks and it was the perfect side. Definitely one that we will make on a regular basis!
My husband and I love this recipe and make it all the time. Thanks so much for such a great recipe!!
Amazing!! Big hit with friends and family. Love the orzo because it’s not too pasta heavy. Will be making this again!
Have enjoyed making this delightful salad. Now wondering how far in advance I can make this salad before taking it to a gathering? Is making it the night before to early? Don’t want it dried out. Thanks.
This is absolutely wonderful. So fresh, tasty and satisfying. I wouldn’t make any changes. Be sure to make the homemade Greek dressing using the link provided. It really made a difference… so much better than bottled dressing and super easy to make. This will definitely be a go-to salad for me in the future.
I’m so glad, Laura! Thanks for taking the time to make this recipe and leave such a thoughtful review!
Wow…I’ve been making this salad for almost 20 years. Put it together for an event I catered in 2004. It is almost to the letter of how I make it.
Well, I concur….it’s a keeper.
Too funny! And I concur with you!
I just tried this recipe…and I’m in mad love! This makes a lot…you’ll be ready for any carry in for sure. I also made your GMa salad dressing…divine! This is a must try for sure!!
I’ve made this a few times & it has become a staple for BBQ’s. Everyone loves!
How far ahead of time can this be made for an event? Can I make it the day before?