This zesty, peppery orzo arugula salad is topped with sweet and tangy cranberries, sun-dried red peppers and a homemade lemon basil vinaigrette.
Orzo arugula salad has so many textures and flavors going on and would be delicious served with a Pork roast, Oven roasted turkey, or Crispy lemon pepper chicken. It’s a fresh, vibrant salad perfect for those last few days of summer and early fall.
A Tasty Seasonal Salad
This salad is perfect for late summer and early fall. It’s got fresh greens and a homemade lemon basil vinaigrette, but also cranberries and toasted almonds. It’s a unique yet flavorful combination that I love. And don’t even get me started on the burrata being all cool over in the corner.
Inspired by one of our favorite pizza places in SLC, this dish is easy to make yet so impressive looking. It’d be perfect for dinner club, a busy weeknight meal, or as a holiday side.
The original, authentic recipe includes pine nuts, not almonds. Pine nuts can be pretty expensive, so we opt for almonds. It also called for a scoop of ricotta which is probably a lot easier to find in most grocery stores, however, if you can find burrata I highly recommend grabbing some!
Making Simple Orzo Arugula Salad
PASTA. Set a large saucepan with water over high heat, bring to a boil. Cook orzo according to the package’s instructions. Drain, rinse with cold water, then drizzle with olive oil. Set aside.
SALAD. In a large mixing bowl combine arugula, bell peppers, cranberries, nuts, salt, and pepper.
DRESSING. In a food processor or blender, combine all ingredients for the dressing, pulse until emulsified.
ASSEMBLE + SERVE. Add cool orzo to greens. Toss with dressing and plate on a large platter or on individual salad plates. Add the burrata and drizzle with olive oil, add a crack of black pepper and a pinch of flaky sea salt.
Tips + Storing Info
Burrata is a ball of fresh Italian mozzarella cheese filled with rich, thick cream. It is perfect in salads or with grilled fruit and vegetables. It also tastes amazing with toasted bread and fresh pesto or bruschetta.
Orzo is a rice shaped pasta. To toast it, melt 2 tsp of butter in a pan and toast the orzo for 4 minutes or until it is lightly browned.
You can prepare the orzo ahead of time and keep it in an airtight container in the fridge until you’re ready to combine all of the ingredients.
STORE this salad, undressed, in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week. The greens will become soggy overtime, so try to eat this salad as soon as possible!
A few more restaurant inspired salads to try:
Orzo Arugula Salad Recipe
For the orzo:
- 1 c. uncooked orzo
- 2 tsp. olive oil
For the salad:
- 5 oz. baby arugula or baby arugula blend - washed and dried
- 3 tbsp. chopped sun-dried red bell peppers in oil - chopped
- ¼ c. dried cranberries
- ¼ c. sliced almonds or pine nuts - toasted
- ¼ tsp. coarse kosher sea salt
- ¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- 2 balls burrata or ⅓ c. ricotta cheese
For the dressing:
- ¼ c. fresh lemon juice + 1 tsp. lemon zest
- ¼ c. olive oil
- ½ tsp. dijon mustard
- 1 clove garlic
- half a small shallot
- 1 tsp. sugar
- 8 basil leaves
- ¼ tsp. coarse kosher sea salt
- pinch ground black pepper
- Set a large saucepan with water over high heat, bring to a boil. Cook orzo according to the package's instructions. Drain, rinse with cold water, then drizzle with olive oil. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl combine arugula, bell peppers, cranberries, nuts, salt, and pepper.
- In a food processor or blender, combine all ingredients for the dressing, pulse until emulsified.
- Add cool orzo to greens. Toss with dressing and plate on a large platter or on individual salad plates. Serve with burrata.