Change up your pasta salad with this Orzo Pasta Salad with Feta Cheese. Packed with vegetables and a zesty Italian dressing, this pasta salad does not disappoint.
Spring is here! Gather your spring recipes and get to making them. We love making pasta salads and this Orzo Pasta Salad with Feta Cheese is a nice change from our normal pasta salad.
For this orzo salad, you can change up the vegetables to what you have on hand or like. You can even change up the dressing used. We are big fans of zesty Italian dressings and I normally purchase a bottled one, but this time I made my own. It was great to be able to use what I had in the pantry and not have to run to the store.
Making pasta salad with orzo
This recipe couldn’t be easier to prepare. While the orzo is cooking, you can chop up all the vegetables you are using and also make the dressing. However, my best tip is to make the zesty Italian dressing in the morning and let it chill to allow the flavors to mingle for a couple of hours. I have made it when I am cooking the pasta and it’s perfectly good that way, too.
Important to note that the ingredients for the zesty Italian dressing are a mix that you can store in a mason jar and make multiple servings of the dressing. Once you mix the DRY ingredients for the dressing, you will ONLY use 2 tablespoons of it with 2 tablespoons water, 1/4 cup white vinegar (or white wine vinegar), 2/3 cup oil light olive oil and a sprinkling of lemon juice.
Chop the vegetables into smaller pieces than you would if you were using a bigger pasta shape.
I like to add the dressing and combine everything before I add the feta cheese. This way I am mixing it once and the feta doesn’t break into too small of pieces.
The dressing makes MORE than you need for the pasta salad. I like to add a bit more before serving, as the pasta does soak it up, and sometimes the next day too.
Be sure to check out more Easter Brunch ideas from my fellow #OurFamilyTable blogger friends below the recipe!
Orzo Pasta Salad with Feta Cheese
- 8 oz uncooked orzo pasta
- 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
- 1/2 green bell pepper, diced
- 1 cucumber, seeded and diced
- 1 pint (2 cups) grape tomatoes, halved
- 2/3 cup red onion, diced
- 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
Also will need the following for the dressing
- 2 tbsp dry mix of Zesty Italian dressing, see below for big batch mix of this dressing
- 2 tbsp water
- 1/4 cup white vinegar (or white wine vinegar)
- 2/3 cup light olive oil
- sprinkling of fresh lemon juice
Dry Ingredients for Zesty Italian Dressing (for multiple uses)
- 2 tbsp dried oregano
- 1 tbsp garlic powder
- 1 tbsp onion powder
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp dried basil leaves
- 1 tsp lemon pepper seasoning
- 1 tsp dried thyme
You will only use 2 tablespoons of this mix for each batch of dressing you want to make. Store the remaining mix in an airtight container.
- Cook orzo according to box instructions, drain, rinse with cold water, drain again, and let cool.
- Add orzo and the diced vegetables together in a large mixing bowl. Combine.
- ONLY use 2 tablespoons of the dry mix for the zesty Italian dressing. Place the 2 tablespoons of dry dressing mix in a small bowl along with 2 tablespoons water, 1/4 cup white vinegar (or white wine vinegar), 2/3 cup oil light olive oil and a sprinkling of lemon juice. Whisk to combine. Refrigerate until ready to serve, or use immediately.
- Once you are ready to add the dressing, top the pasta salad with the feta cheese and then drizzle over the dressing and stir to combine. Refrigerate until chilled and add more dressing as needed.
Fresh Spring Sides Dishes
- Blueberry Ginger Slaw by Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
- Creamed Beet Salad by Art of Natural Living
- Creamy Parmesan Asparagus Soup by Cheese Curd In Paradise
- Grilled Asparagus with Fresh Gremolata by That Recipe
- Honey Roasted Carrot Salad by A Day in the Life on the Farm
- Lemony Asparagus Pasta Salad by Making Miracles
- Orzo Pasta Salad by Blogghetti
- Roasted Balsamic Asparagus and Mushrooms by Hezzi D’s Books and Cooks
- Roasted Carrots, Potatoes, and Green Beans by Eat Move Make
- Sweet and Sour Cabbage by A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
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