Pasta, salads, are an easy win during the summer months. When it’s hot out, having a few lighter meal options can go along way toward eating well and not feeling the weight of the meal. And pasta salads are an easy way to get in a variety of vegetables, and try out new flavors with dressings and spices. Greens like kale or spinach add color and a ton of nutrients. Vegetables like colorful peppers, zucchini, squash, tomatoes and asparagus are all great choices as they don’t require precooking for salads. There are lots of ways to change this up to have a different version of this salad every night of the week.
This is a dish that can be prepared vegetarian, vegan or with any proteins of choice. If you are trying to reduce animal protein, this is an easy way to do so where you can try out different combinations to feel and stay satisfied. I have prepared it with vegetarian, with blackened salmon and also shrimp as my meal prep for the week. Check out the video walk-through on Instagram or TikTok.
With the array of vegetables, try out these dressing ideas for added flavor!
Balsamic and garlic: make a quick dressing with a couple tablespoons of balsamic vinegar and fresh pressed garlic with crushed red pepper flakes, and sea salt.
Lemon and rosemary: make a quick vinaigrette with fresh lemon juice, a teaspoon or two of fresh or dried rosemary, some fresh pressed garlic and olive oil.
- 2 cups of cooked orzo pasta
- 1 cup of cherry tomatoes, sliced
- 1 1/2 cups sliced asparagus
- 1/2 cup, diced Kalamata olives
- 1/2 cup feta cheese
- 1/2 cup fresh basil
- 1/4 cup diced green onion
- 2 tbsp red pepper flakes
- 2 tsp sea salt
- Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Add a half a tablespoon of sea salt, and 1 cup dried orzo
- While pasta cooks, slice vegetables and set aside.
- Strain pasta and add to a medium bowl.
- Add and vegetables, thinly slice basil and add to pasta.
- Top with feta cheese, red pepper flakes, and sea salt, and mix well
- Serve as is, or with protein a choice.