Vegan Summer Orzo Salad

Vegan Summer Orzo Salad

Orzo salads are one of my absolute favorite sides in the summertime, but so often they have feta or other types of cheeses mixed into it, so I decided to create a delicious vegan orzo salad that is perfect for summertime barbecues. I used my mom’s delicious vegan pesto recipe that I literally put on everything (she also has a nut free pesto recipe that I will post at some point!). If you want to make this recipe a bit easier and faster, you can use already prepared pesto that comes in a jar, and completely skip the homemade pesto step!

Ingredients:

Pesto:

  • 2 Cups of spinach, basil, or kale (or you can use a mix if you do not have enough)
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1/4 cup of walnuts (or any pine nuts or any other kind of nut)
  • 4 tablespoons of olive oil, and more as needed
  • salt 
  • (add parmesan if not vegan)

Orzo Salad:

  • Batch of Pesto
  • Orzo (cook however much you want)
  • Grape Tomatoes
  • Spinach
  • Lemons
  • Salt and pepper
  Directions:
  1. First start by boiling a pot of water and cooking the orzo according to box directions (I did half the box and it took about 10 minutes)
  2. While the Orzo is cooking prepare your pesto- Add all ingredients into a nutribullet, blender, or food processor and mix well (you might need to use a spatula of some kind and push down the sides)
  3. Once the pesto is at the desired consistency, set aside
  4. Wash and cut up the grape tomatoes
  5. Once the orzo is finished cooking, drain and rinse and put it back into the pot you used to cook it, and put the pot back on the stove on low heat
  6. Begin to mix in your pesto (measurements are different based on the type of pesto you used and the amount of orzo you made, so eye it!)
  7. Once you start mixing in the pesto, squeeze the juice of one lemon and add salt and pepper to taste
  8. Then add sliced grape tomatoes and spinach and mix well until the spinach is wilted and the ingredients are well incorporated.