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A rimmed, round white plate has been filled with an orzo pasta salad that's packed with vegetables and herbs. It rests on a white surface.
4.29 from 14 votes

Lemon Orzo Pasta Salad

Author - Gena Hamshaw
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Yields: 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 lb asparagus (ends trimmed and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces)
  • 1 cup green peas fresh or frozen and thawed
  • 8 ounces marinated, quartered artichoke hearts
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas (1 14.5-ounce can, drained and rinsed)
  • 12 ounces orzo (1 1/2 cups dry)
  • 4-5 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped shallot
  • 1 clove garlic, minced (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt (adjust to taste)
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (adjust to taste)
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh dill
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped parsley
  • 1/4 cup cashew parmesan cheese (optional)

Instructions

  • Bring a large pot of salt water to boil. Add the orzo. Cook for about 8 minutes, or until the orzo is al dente and not quite ready. Add the asparagus pieces; cook for another 2 minutes. Add the peas and cook for 1 more minute. Drain the pasta and vegetables.
  • While the pasta water is coming to a boil, whisk together 4 tablespoons of the olive oil, the lemon juice and zest, shallots, garlic (if using), salt, and pepper.
  • When the pasta and vegetables are ready, transfer them to a large mixing bowl. Add the dressing and toss everything well to combine. Finally, fold in the chopped parsley and dill, along with the parmesan, if using. Taste the salad and adjust salt and pepper to taste. Add up to 1 extra tablespoon olive oil as needed. Serve.

Notes

*Gluten free orzo can be used in place of regular orzo.
The pasta will keep overnight in an airtight container in the fridge. If you plan to store it before sharing, prepare as directed but leave out the fresh parsley. Right before serving, fold the parsley in.