Orzo Pasta Salad

This orzo pasta salad is filled with Spring/Summery goodness: peas, asparagus and fresh herbs. Chewy orzo pasta with tender green veggies, loads of fresh herbs and crispy bell pepper along with feta cheese and dressed with a tangy dressing. Perfect for serving as a main dish or side dish, and easy to customize with your favorite add-ins. Mint and peas are fresh and fabulous together - we couple the two in this orzo salad along with more veggies and a tangy dressing for a great pasta salad you will be enjoying all season long!

Orzo Pasta Salad in a white bowl

Orzo Pasta Salad Recipe Ingredients

  • ORZO: Or any short pasta shape/ gluten-free orzo or regular is fine
  • VEGETABLES: Peas, asparagus, red bell pepper. Feel free to vary or add extra veggies - see alternatives below.
  • SHALLOT & GARLIC: I like to use shallot for a sweeter finish but you could definitely swap it out for red onion or even green onions. The garlic is for the dressing, I like to use fresh but dried garlic powder works too. Use as little or as much as you like
  • HERBS & SPICES: My favorite combination for this orzo salad is fresh parsley and fresh mint - but please chose the ones you love. This would be great with basil or fresh dill as well. I keep things simple with just salt and pepper for spices but feel free to add a little dried thyme or even some dried oregano
  • LEMON JUICE & BALSAMIC: I love the combo of fresh lemon juice and balsamic vinegar together but you can either do one or the other or swap the balsamic with apple cider vinegar or red wine vinegar
  • HONEY: This sweetens the dressing and can easily be swapped with maple syrup or even sugar
  • OLIVE OIL: Don’t skimp on the olive oil with this recipe
  • FETA CHEESE: Good feta crumbled or cubed works well here or you could also use goat cheese or mini bocconcini.
  • ALTERNATE ADD INS: Feel free to add in more crunchy veggies like cucumber, broccoli (blanch the pieces the same way as you blanch the asparagus) or celery or add some more colour by adding some sliced cherry tomatoes/grape tomatoes and corn and even Kalamata olives would be delicious in this salad. Add more protein by grilling chicken and adding it or serving it with it or toss in some chickpeas or white beans

Orzo Pasta Salad ingredients all visible

How to make the tastiest orzo pasta salad:

  1. Cook Orzo: It couldn’t be easier. Simply start by cooking the orzo — since it’s small it takes no time to cook. Before it finishes cooking add in the peas and asparagus for a quick blanch. Then drain, rinse with cold water and then strain.
  2. Make Dressing: Whisk the dressing ingredients
  3. Toss in Veggies, Cheese & Herbs: Combine the orzo, peas and asparagus with the bell peppers, shallots and herbs. Drizzle with dressing and toss well to combine

Orzo Pasta Salad Step by Step Directions

How To Serve This Orzo Pasta Salad

  • Straight from the bowl The noodles and all of the vegetables make this salad plenty filling for a light meal.
  • Atop fresh greens If you want to add even more nutrition and veggie goodness, you could toss this pasta recipe with fresh greens, like arugula then add on a bit of extra dressing to create a satisfying green salad.
  • As a side dish I typically serve this as a side with grilled meats, burgers or sandwiches. Or toss in some grilled shrimp or grilled chopped chicken

Orzo Pasta Salad being served in a bowl with a spoon

Make Ahead & Storage Recommendations

  • MAKE AHEAD: This is great to make several hours in advance of serving because it’s best when served chilled. You can even cook the orzo pasta along with the peas and asparagus - cook and dress and chill for up to a day ahead.
  • STORAGE: Place leftover salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator for about 3 days. Before serving again, give it a good stir, taste and season again as needed.

Orzo Pasta Salad in a bowl on a table

More Pasta Salads You Will Love:


Servings: 4-6
Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 10 mins
Total Time: 25 mins


For The Orzo Pasta Salad

  • 1½ cups (8 ounces) dried orzo pasta
  • 1 cup (220 g) fresh peas or frozen
  • 1 cup diced asparagus
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeds and stem removed and diced
  • ½ cup chopped fresh herbs; use any combination of fresh parsley, and mint
  • 1 shallot, peeled and minced
  • ½-1 cup crumbled feta

For the Dressing

  • ⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 small clove of garlic peeled and minced or grated
  • ½ teaspoon honey or maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ¾ teaspoon sea salt
  • Black pepper, to taste
  • Optional: zest of 1 lemon (for a stronger lemon flavor)


  1. Cook the Orzo: Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add in the tablespoon of salt. Add the orzo to the pot and cook for 5 to 7 minutes (or 2-3 minutes less than cooking time on package directions), then add the fresh peas and the asparagus and cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes, until both the orzo, peas and asparagus are tender. Drain and rinse with cold water until cool.
  2. Make the dressing: add the oil, lemon juice, balsamic, dijon, honey, garlic, salt, pepper, and optional lemon zest to a small mason jar. Seal the jar and shake vigorously until emulsified or whisk in a bowl; set aside.
  3. Assemble: Transfer the drained orzo, peas and asparagus to a large mixing bowl, then add in the herbs, bell pepper, shallots and the feta cheese. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss until well-combined. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste, if desired.
  4. Serve: Serve immediately, or place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes and serve cold. Leftovers will keep in the fridge for up to 3-5 days.

A macro shot of Orzo Pasta Salad