This orzo salad is a copycat of the one sold at Piada Italian Street Food… it’s crunchy, a little sweet, a little savory, and always a hit at parties!
If you’ve ever been to Piada Italian Street Food, you’ve probably had, or heard of, the orzo salad. This copycat recipe tastes JUST like it!!
You guys. We had a Piada Italian Street Food open up here a few years back, and once we tried it…. WOWzers! All the food tastes so fresh and bright. I swear this post isn’t an ad for them, as I’m not affiliated with them in any way, but it all comes down to this one side dish they sell. It might be seasonal, but all I know for sure is that it is flat-out amazing!
I literally would order this orzo salad every. single. time we went there, and over the years I’ve been working on a copycat version. I’m SO happy to say, this is IT. It tastes exactly like the original, and is absolutely perfect for any occasion!
To me, it’s awesome for a cookout or BBQ, but we also have it a side dish on a regular weeknight.
What makes this orzo salad the best, is that it’s a make-ahead dish! It’s actually better, the longer it sits. Of course, you can totally make this and eat it right away, but all the flavors won’t be perfectly blended together. Plus, if you make it up ahead of time, then when it’s time for dinner or the cookout, you don’t have to do anything 😉 Boom!
I have to stop for a second to laugh at that picture up there…. it’s such a smallllll portion size. Actually it might be a standard portion, but for me, it’s small. Because one bite of this orzo salad, and you’ll be wanting way more!
Okay, so what to serve this salad with… honestly the sky is the limit! But here are a few of my favorites:
- Caribbean Citrus Habanero Chicken Skewers
- Grilled Steakhouse Kebabs
- Maple Balsamic Glazed Pork Chops
- Grilled Chicken Salad with Strawberries
- Coffee-Rubbed Burgers or Pepper Crusted Bacon Cheeseburgers
Please please please do yourself a favor and give this orzo salad a try this summer… the combination of textures and sweet/savory flavors is amazing!
Did you make this? Be sure to leave a review below and tag me @the_chunky_chef on Facebook and Instagram!
LEMON BASIL DRESSING:
- 3 Tbsp lemon juice (fresh is best)
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp fresh basil, minced
- 1/2 Tbsp honey
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1 lb orzo pasta
- heaping 1/3 cup fresh sugar snap peas, sliced
- 1/8 cup currants (raisins will also work if you can't find currants)
- 1/4 cup red bell pepper, minced
- 1/8 cup sliced raw almonds
- 1/8 cup candied pecans, crushed or minced
- 1 Tbsp fresh basil, minced
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
MAKE THE DRESSING:
- Add all dressing ingredients except olive oil to a small mixing bowl. Slowly pour in olive oil, while whisking continuously. Set aside.
MAKE THE ORZO SALAD:
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add a pinch of salt and orzo. Cook until al dente, according to package directions. Drain, rinse lightly with cold water and set aside.
- To a large mixing bowl, add cooked orzo, and all remaining ingredients. Toss to combine.
- Give lemon basil dressing a whisk, then pour over orzo salad. Toss to combine again.
- Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour, or up to 2-3 days. Toss gently before serving.
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