This Spring Veggie Orzo salad is bursting with so much flavor and color! Whole wheat orzo paired with beautiful, fresh spring produce, sharp feta cheese, crunchy walnuts, and peppery arugula. Plus, topped with a bright, lemon dressing. It’s the best of Spring on a plate!
Spring Veggie Orzo Salad
It’s finally Spring! This is my favorite time of year! The weather finally starts to warm up, we get to enjoy longer, more sun-filled days, my favorite flowers, like peonies and hydrangeas, start to bloom, and the delicious, fresh, Spring produce is plentiful.
Spring boasts some of my favorite veggies and greens: asparagus, snap peas, radishes, rainbow carrots, spring onions, and spinach + arugula. I incorporated most of these beauties into this colorful Spring orzo salad.
This salad contains roasted and fresh Spring veggies, tender whole wheat orzo, sharp, salt feta, earthy, crunchy walnuts, and peppery, fresh arugula. Then, it’s topped with a bright, tangy lemon dressing. It’s bursting with vibrant flavors, textures, and colors – making for an irresistible side dish or main!
Ingredients in this Spring Veggie Orzo Salad
This salad showcases the best of Spring produce:
- arugula and spinach; the beautiful greens help tie all the components together and create a true salad.
- radishes; radishes have a sharp, peppery taste. Roasting them tames down their peppery bite while also making them incredible creamy and tender. The work so well in this salad with the other roasted veggies!
- rainbow carrots; I’m obsessed with rainbow carrots. Each carrot has it’s own beautiful, unique hue and distinct taste. It makes for a delicious tasting and pretty visual experience!
- red onion; roasted red onions get sweet and charred, making for a delicious bite; Plus, it adds a touch of purple that looks so pretty with the other colorful produce.
- snap peas; add extra color and a fresh, snappy bite.
- parsley; adds a fresh, aromatic earthy component that gives the salad an unexpected pop of herby goodness. Not only is parsley the perfect garnish, it’s also good for you; it’s rich in iron and vitamins A and C!
- feta cheese; it’s sharp, salty flavor works perfectly with the sweet, earthy, and savory flavors happening in this dish.
- lemon; it’s bright, punchy bite helps wake up the veggies and cut through the richness of the pasta and cheese.
- whole wheat orzo; Orzo is a small rice-shaped pasta (it’s not actually a grain!) that adds a toothsome bite to this dish. I like to use whole wheat orzo for added fiber and nutrients.
- lemon + olive il dressing; I found a great, organic, and wholesome lemon dressing at my local Jewel-Osco, which is what I used in this salad. It’s bright and rich, pairing perfectly with the roasted and fresh produce in this salad. Any good quality lemon dressing will work for this dish (just make sure it’s made with wholesome, real ingredients). You could also simply use fresh lemon juice, olive oil, and salt and pepper.
How to mix it up
If you are not a fan of any of the veggies I used in this dish, you can swap them out for any of your favorites. Here is an awesome guide on what is in season right now!
Also, goat cheese instead of the feta would be a great alternative. The creamy, tangy goat cheese pairs well with Spring produce.
Instead of walnuts, try pine nuts! Pine nuts are bit more expensive, but totally worth it for that buttery, nutty bite! I recommend trying to buy pine nuts in the bulk nuts section so you only buy what you need and it doesn’t get too pricey.
Want a bit more substance?! Add some grilled chicken or baked fish to make this a complete meal!
Finally, there are tons of different dressings that would work with this season: a classic balsamic dressing, lemon tahini dressing, or even a creamy, Italian dressing would work great!
Is this healthy?!
Yes! This is bursting with nutrient-rich spring produce! Plus, I opted for a fiber-rich whole wheat orzo instead of white orzo. The dressing is organic and made with simple, wholesome ingredients, like olive oil and lemon juice. Finally, it’s loaded with goodies like heart-healthy walnuts and nutrient-filled greens like arugula and spinach!
This dish is also easily vegan or diary-free friendly. Just omit the cheese or switch it for vegan cheese for a delicious, vegan dish!
Gluten-free concerns?! You can totally omit the orzo for a grain-free option like quinoa or gluten-free pasta.
other delicious spring recipes
This Spring Veggie Orzo salad features whole wheat orzo, beautiful, fresh spring produce, sharp feta cheese, crunchy walnuts, and peppery arugula. Plus, topped with a bright, lemon dressing. It’s the best of Spring on a plate!
If you make tis Spring veggie orzo salad, please leave a comment below. I absolutely love to hear from you guys and your thoughts on my recipes. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram or pin it on pinterest, because sharing is caring!
Spring Veggie Orzo Salad
- 4-5 radishes cut into chunks
- 3-4 medium to large rainbow carrots peeled and cut into thick strips
- Half a large red onion cut into chunks
- 1 cup arugula
- 1 cup spinach
- 1 cup fresh snap peas cut in half
- 1-2 tablespoons fresh parsely;
- 1/2 cup feta cheese
- 1/2 cup walnuts or pine nuts
- 1 cup cooked whole wheat orzo regular orzo works too
- Store-bought lemon vinaigrette I used this organic lemon dressing
Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees and grease or line with parchment paper a large baking tray.
Toss together the radishes, red onion, and carrots with olive oil and a heavy pinch of salt (plus pepper to taste). Spread out veggies evenly on baking tray. Bake for 12 minutes, flip, then baking for another 10-15 minutes or until veggies are browned and tender.
On a large serving platter, add the arugula and spinach, roasted veggies, fresh snap peas, and orzo. Top with feta cheese, nuts, and parsley.
Finish with desired amount of dressing. Toss before serving. Adjust seasonings as desired.
Serve and enjoy!