There is great texture and big flavor in this Orzo, Grape, Feta Salad with spinach and balsamic. This pretty orzo pasta salad is great side dish choice for any summer meal.
I’ve been making this light, breezy, and beautiful Orzo, Grape, Feta Salad going on 7 years now and I love it just as much today as the first time I made it. It is delicious year round but I especially love it in the summer and serve it with pretty much anything that comes off our grill.
Cooked orzo is cooled and combined with baby spinach, red grapes, toasted walnuts, and crumbled feta and the whole thing is tossed with a simple balsamic dressing. This texture and flavor combo has me craving this orzo spinach salad on a regular basis.
I highly recommend making it ahead of time and letting it sit in the fridge for a hour or more since the flavor and texture only improve with a little chilling time (more on this below). In fact, the leftovers will be just as tasty since the salad holds up incredibly well in the fridge overnight. Try topping it with some sliced, grilled chicken for lunch or an easy dinner the next day. Heaven.
For the Orzo Spinach Salad
fresh baby spinach
diced red onion
crumbled feta cheese
Even though orzo looks like rice it is actually pasta and you’ll find it in the dry pasta section of your grocery store. For the full scoop on orzo check this article on Good Housekeeping.
For the Balsamic Dressing
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Cook the orzo according to the package directions. Rinse it with cold water and then drain it very well and set it aside while you prep the other ingredients.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and toast the walnuts in a small oven-proof dish for about 5 minutes. Remove them from the oven, coarsely chop them and set them aside.
Cut the grapes in half and mince up your red onion.
Combine all of the dressing ingredients in a small bowl.
Combine the well drained and cooled orzo, onion, baby spinach, the dressing, and about half of the grapes and feta, reserving the rest to garnish the top of the salad so it will be beau-tee-ful!
Toss the salad and then top it with the remaining grapes, feta, and the toasted walnuts.
To make this salad ahead of time, follow the directions as written above, adding everything except the walnuts, then cover and chill it up to 24 hours. Add the toasted walnuts just before serving.
More delicious things to do with orzo:
This recipe was originally published on August 31, 2013 and has been updated with new text and images.
There is great texture and big flavor in this Orzo, Grape, Feta Salad. This pretty orzo pasta salad is great side dish choice for any summer meal.
Course Salad, Side Dish
Servings 10to 12 servings
1/2cupdiced red onion
1cupcrumbled feta cheese
salt and freshly ground pepperto taste
Cook orzo according to package directions. Rinse with cool water and drain well. Transfer to a large serving bowl and set aside.
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place walnuts in a small dish and bake for 5 minutes or until warm and lightly toasted. Remove from the oven, coarsely chop, and set aside.
In a small bowl, combine the oil, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, garlic, garlic powder, and salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside.
Add the half of the grapes, all of the baby spinach, and all of the red onion to the serving bowl with the orzo. Add the dressing and half of the feta and toss well to distribute the dressing. Top with remaining grapes, feta, and chopped walnuts. Serve.
Follow as directed above but don't add the walnuts. Cover and refrigerate for up to 24 hours. Top with walnuts just before serving.