Make It Natural: Orzo Salad with Broccoli and Tomatoes


Cookout season is just around the corner, and nothing accompanies a juicy burger, grilled chicken or classic hot dog better than a pasta salad. Traditional pasta and potato salads are often made with a mayonnaise base that is high in calories and fat. As tasty as these side dishes are, there are some healthier options out there that taste just as delicious!Sue, one of our Whole Story readers, sent us an idea for an orzo salad recipe makeover just in time for the season. This salad uses an oil-and-lemon dressing for a lighter profile. We boosted the nutrition in this already healthy recipe by adding plenty of vegetables for their nutritional attributes as well as eye-catching appeal.

Check out the recipe we developed for Orzo Salad with Broccoli and Tomatoes.

(Click through on the link above for the full recipe, including comments and ratings!)

  • Tripling the broccoli adds calcium, fiber, potassium, vitamin C, folate and vitamin K. Broccoli is a cruciferous vegetable, and like other cruciferous vegetables, is an excellent nutrient-rich addition to any salad.

  • Grape tomatoes add potassium, vitamin A, fiber and vitamin C , not to mention flavor and bright color.

  • Even green onions are good for you! They contribute potassium and vitamins.

  • Olives, pine nuts and feta add tons of flavor to complement the veggies and mild orzo pasta.

This side dish is packed with essential vitamins and minerals, making it a great substitute for mayonnaise-based pasta and potato salads. Create your own variation on this salad by mixing up the combination of vegetables. Some nutrient-dense options include radishes, bell peppers of any color, red cabbage, cucumber, spinach or carrots. Choosing a variety of colors is appealing to the eye and helps you get the nutrients you need to be healthy.You’ll be a favorite guest at summer cookouts with this salad in your repertoire. Enjoy!Send us Your Recipe Request!Do you have a recipe you’d like us to make natural? Post it in the comments section below! If we select your recipe for a healthy makeover and publish the improved version on our website, we’ll send you a $25 Whole Foods Market gift card.

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