This is another meal prep lunch favorite. You can do this pasta salad hot or cold, making it easily transportable (even though we’re all probably close to the microwave lately.) It combines nutritious orzo pasta with Mediterranean veggies, spices and olive oil. Lemon juice brings a pop of freshness, and the arugula adds a peppery punch, plus even more nutrients.
Like a lot of my recipes (especially the meal prep ones) this dish is easily customizable. Use your own creative veggie mix, leave out or swap out the protein, try a different spice mix or infused olive oil (a curry orzo salad perhaps?) Or you can stick to my Mediterranean style, which includes black olives, artichoke hearts and roasted red peppers.
Mediterranean Orzo Salad
- 1 cup orzo
- 2 large chicken breasts cut into bite size pieces
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- salt & pepper to taste
- 4 tsp olive oil
- 1 jar roasted red peppers chopped
- 1 can artichoke hearts chopped
- 1 small can black olives diced
- 2 tbsp pesto (store bought is totally fine here)
- 1 package arugala (*see note)
- 1/2 lemon (just the juice)
- Cook orzo according to package instructions (I usually do mine in a rice cooker! Works great!)
- Season chicken with salt and pepper and other spices.
- Heat 2 tsp of the olive oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook for about 15 minutes, until cooked through and the outsides start to get dark and crispy in some places. Remove from pan and set aside
- Add the peppers and artichokes to the pan and sauté for a few minutes.
- Add the cooked orzo and pesto to the pack. Then add the chicken back in and stir all together until combined, and everything is coated in pesto. Cool and store in containers in the fridge.
- Toss the arugula and olives with the remaining two teaspoons of olive oil and the juice of half a lemon. Store separately in the fridge.
- WHEN READY TO EAT: pile a heap of orzo salad over a bed of arugula and enjoy! If you want to re-heat the orzo salad before putting over the greens, that works too!