This is a wonderfully light salad for those hot summer nights. If you like, it goes well with the addition of either tuna or grilled chicken, and you can vary the amount of feta depending on your taste.

Recipe Summary

prep:
20 mins
cook:
15 mins
total:
35 mins
Servings:
8
Yield:
8 servings
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Ingredients

8
Original recipe yields 8 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Bring the chicken broth to a boil over high heat. Add the orzo pasta, and cook until al dente, 8 to 10 minutes. Drain well, then pour the orzo into a bowl, and toss with the butter to keep it from sticking; set aside.

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  • While the pasta is cooking, heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in the garlic, and cook until the garlic softens and the aroma mellows, about 2 minutes. Stir in the basil, thyme, red pepper flakes, and pine nuts. Cook and stir until the pine nuts have toasted to a light golden brown.

  • Stir the pine nut mixture into the orzo along with the olives, capers, feta cheese, spinach, and lemon juice. Serve either warm or cold, but it's better the next day.

Nutrition Facts

554 calories; protein 19.3g 39% DV; carbohydrates 49.6g 16% DV; fat 32.3g 50% DV; cholesterol 43.6mg 15% DV; sodium 1004.1mg 40% DV. Full Nutrition

Reviews (90)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 4 stars
04/14/2008
This salad has good flavor. I especially liked the touch of thyme. I used reduced sodium broth but with feta capers and kalamata olives it was a bit salty. Next time I would omit the broth and cook the orzo in unsalted water. With all the other great flavors I don't think the broth would be missed. I would also omit the butter and just rinse the pasta to eliminate any sticking. I used fresh basil and thyme and added grape tomatoes to cut the salt taste it was a nice addition. Did a dry toasting on the nuts and drizzled the oil in the salad. Diced chicken would go very well in this salad. Thank you for the post. Read More
(53)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 2 stars
07/03/2012
Dont think I'll be making this again. Wasnt bad but also didnt "WOW" me. Read More
(2)
142 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 96
  • 4 star values: 38
  • 3 star values: 4
  • 2 star values: 2
  • 1 star values: 2
Rating: 4 stars
04/13/2008
This salad has good flavor. I especially liked the touch of thyme. I used reduced sodium broth but with feta capers and kalamata olives it was a bit salty. Next time I would omit the broth and cook the orzo in unsalted water. With all the other great flavors I don't think the broth would be missed. I would also omit the butter and just rinse the pasta to eliminate any sticking. I used fresh basil and thyme and added grape tomatoes to cut the salt taste it was a nice addition. Did a dry toasting on the nuts and drizzled the oil in the salad. Diced chicken would go very well in this salad. Thank you for the post. Read More
(53)
Rating: 5 stars
05/15/2008
Yummy!!! This was delicious and so easy to make. I was just cooking for me so I halved it it still made plenty. I skipped the capers and olives because I can't stand them but next time I make this (and I will be making this a lot!) I will add them. Shared this at lunch with coworkers and they liked it too thanks for an easy and delicious recipe! Read More
(30)
Rating: 4 stars
07/05/2008
This is really tasty. I also skipped the chicken broth used fresh herbs and plain feta. I did add xtra lemon and olive oil as mine turned out a little bit dry... Can't wait to try it tomorrow! Thanks prell2k4!! Read More
(23)
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Rating: 5 stars
05/28/2009
Oh wow. This is SO GOOD! Excellent combination of flavors and textures. The only changes I made were to use veg broth and fresh herbs (I added the basil with the spinach rather than sauteing it) and olive oil instead of butter. I'll dry-toast the nuts next time--they seemed a little soggy from toasting in the oil and my garlic started to burn. Still absolutely delicious--a new favorite! Read More
(19)
Rating: 5 stars
06/08/2009
This was delicious! A welcomed change from the regular ol' pasta salad. I used fresh basil and thyme and added them in with the spinach for fresher flavor. Another reviewer suggested dry roasting the pine nuts...next time I'll do that as well...to brown them up a little better and prevent my garlic from browning. I didn't have kalamata olives so I used black olives and I did add chopped artichoke hearts and grape tomatoes for color. BUT this recipe on it's own deserves 5 stars. Thank you for the recipe:) Read More
(18)
Rating: 5 stars
09/03/2008
Loved this recipe! I had almost all the ingredients but not the right AMOUNTS but it still worked out delicous. My package of Feta was only 6 oz. and my pine nut pkg. was only 2.5 oz. AND I was out of olives so omitted them. That being said... you can make this recipe a little cheaper and still be a 5 star! Light enough for summer heat eating and hearty enough for an entree AND nice enough for company! Thanks Prell2k for a wonderful recipe and Tizzylizz for suggesting! Read More
(13)
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Rating: 5 stars
05/11/2008
Scrumptious! Loved this as well as my family. Delicious flavors loved the fresh spinach capers and the basil feta. This was a delicious and yes Refreshing salad. Thanks Prell2K4! A winner recipe! Read More
(10)
Rating: 5 stars
07/05/2008
Yummy I loved this salad. it was a hit at yesterday's foruth of July celebartion. very easy to make. the only change i made was i had to use regular feta as my local store did not have the flavored. Yumm. thanks Prell for a great salad Read More
(9)
Rating: 4 stars
06/03/2008
I needed to use up a lot of fresh cilantro and this recipe was a great template! Omitted the Italian-style spices in this recipe and used cilantro EVOO and lemon juice in place. Great summer meal with some grilled chicken! Read More
(8)
Rating: 2 stars
07/03/2012
Dont think I'll be making this again. Wasnt bad but also didnt "WOW" me. Read More
(2)