Mediterranean Couscous Salad

This Mediterranean Couscous Salad is packed with Pearl Couscous, artichoke hearts, tomatoes, red onions, fresh parsley, asparagus, Greek olives, roasted red peppers, Goats Cheese and tossed in a homemade vinaigrette dressing. It’s the perfect side dish for any meal, Pot Luck, or gathering.

I love a good salad, and it’s that time of year again to start making our favorite Salad recipes. Mediterranean Couscous Salad is the perfect salad to celebrate spring and summer. Heck, who am I kidding? Living in Central Florida, we pretty much have free access to fresh veggies that are locally grown almost all year-long.

 

Mediterranean Couscous SaladCouscous is one of those beautiful ingredients that you can do so much with, such as cold salads, soups, side dishes, and hot dishes. You name it, and you can pretty much do it. I prefer Israeli Couscous (Pearl Couscous) for my Mediterranean Couscous Salad, it has a beautiful texture that is perfect for salads. This Israeli Couscous is just big enough to have a delicious bite, yet not take over your salad.

For this version of Mediterranean Couscous Salad, I decided to use fresh organic bite-sized asparagus pieces, halved grape tomatoes, freshly roasted red bell peppers, fresh chopped parsley, diced red onions, artichoke hearts, Mediterranean olives, and quality Goats cheese crumbles, and Homemade Greek Dressing for a total flavorful, delicious salad.

Have you ever made fresh Roasted Red Bell Peppers? If so, you know they are always a billion times tastier than the ones in a can or jar. If you haven’t below, you will find instructions on how to easily roast your own Red Bell Peppers right in your oven. Keep in mind if you would instead take a short cut, there are some decent quality jarred Roasted Red Bell Peppers out there as well. This is an optional step.

 

Easy How to Roast a Red Bell Pepper Instructions:

  1. Wash, clean, and dry the Red Bell Peppers
  2. Slice the Red Bell Peppers in half, remove all seeds and the white membrane. 
  3. Preheat the oven to 450 Degree F
  4. Place the Red Bell Peppers on a metal baking sheet lined with Parchment paper. 
  5. Let the top side of the Red Bell Pepper char then turn and repeat, until all sides of the pepper are charred about 25-minutes
  6. Once done, remove the Red Peppers and let cool on a heat-resistant surface for a few moments, just long enough to handle safely about 2-3 minutes.
  7. Place in a Ziplock bag and let the red bell peppers sweat about 5-8 minutes to make the skins come off quickly.
  8. Once skins are removed, reserve in an airtight container until needed will safely store up to 5 days.

 

 

 

 

 

Mediterranean Couscous SaladLet’s talk a bit more about the ingredients. Preferably all veggies should be organic, or at least locally grown for maximum flavor and freshness. If you are in an area that some of the vegetables are not in season, you can always use organic frozen veggies for some of the required ingredients, such as the artichokes and asparagus. I have even used organic jarred artichokes and roasted red peppers in the Mediterranean Couscous Salad.

Fresh parsley is a must; please don’t use dried parsley, as it’s not even remotely close to the flavor of the fresh parsley. The taste of dried parsley is exceptionally minimal and just not what we are looking for when making the Mediterranean Couscous Salad. You will also want to also look for Israeli Couscous, not plain the couscous. The size and texture are day and night in comparison, and the recipe will not come out as it should.

 

 

A few tips on vegetables 

  1. Know the season of the vegetables, buying vegetables and fruits off-season produce will usually cost more due to shipping.
  2. Watch the sales and take advantage of the lower-priced vegetables. They will usually change week to week.
  3. Use fresh vegetables and fruits that are in season. Your local farmer’s market is usually a great place to buy seasonal produce.
  4. Some varieties of fresh vegetables and fruits will not last long. Buy them in small amounts to ensure you can eat the foods without having to throw them away.
  5. For fresh vegetables or even fruits you use more often, a large size bag is the better buy. Canned, frozen fruits or vegetables can be bought in larger sized quantities when they are on sale since they will last much longer.
  6. Buy vegetables and fruits in their purest form. Pre-cut, pre-washed, ready-to-eat, and processed foods are convenient but usually cost more.

 

 

 

 

 

Mediterranean Couscous Salad

 
 
 

 

Ingredients needed to make the recipe

  • Eight-ounces Israeli Couscous (Pearl Couscous)
  • 1/2 Pound Thin Asparagus, ends trimmed
  • One and 1/2 cups Grape Tomatoes, halved
  • One Freshly Roasted Red Pepper or 1 Jarred Red Pepper, chopped
  • One-6-ounce Jar of Quartered Artichoke, preferably not marinated
  • 1/3 cup Diced Red onion
  • 1/3 cup Chopped Fresh Parsley 
  • Ten Greek Olives, optional
  • Four-ounces Crumbled Goat’s cheese +more if desired
  • 1/4 cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • Two tablespoons Red Wine Vinegar
  • Juice of 1 Lemon
  • Two Cloves of Garlic, minced
  • One and 1/2 teaspoons Dried Greek Oregano, or plain Oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon of Kosher Salt, or to own taste
  • Freshly Ground Black Peppercorns, about ten grinds

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 from 25 votes
Mediterranean Couscous Salad
Mediterranean Couscous Salad
Prep Time
25 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
Chill
1 hr
Total Time
35 mins
 
This Mediterranean Couscous Salad is packed with Pearl Couscous, artichoke hearts, tomatoes, red onions, fresh parsley, asparagus, olives, roasted red peppers, Goats Cheese and tossed in a homemade vinaigrette dressing. It’s the perfect side dish for any meal, Pot Luck, or gathering.
Course: Salad
Cuisine: Mediterranean
Keyword: Couscous Salad, Israeli Couscous, Mediterranean Salad
Servings: 8 People
Author: hmccallum
Ingredients
  • 8- ounces Israeli Couscous (Pearl Couscous) cooked per package instructions
  • 1/2 pound Thin Asparagus, ends trimmed, steamed lightly
  • 1 1/2 cups Grape Tomatoes, halved
  • 1 large Roasted Red Pepper or 1 Jarred Red Pepper, chopped
  • 6- ounce Jar of Quartered Artichoke hearts, preferably not marinated drained
  • 1/3 cup Diced Red Onion
  • 1/3 cup Chopped Fresh Parsley
  • 10 Greek Olives optional
  • 4 ounces Crumbled Goat’s cheese +more if desired
Homemade Greek Dressing
  • 1/4 cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 tablespoons Red Wine Vinegar
  • Juice of 1 Lemon
  • 2 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Dried Organic Greek Oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt, or to own taste
  • 10 Grinds Black Peppercorns
Instructions
Homemade Greek Dressing
  1. Combine all ingredients in a small glass bowl, whisk thoroughly until combined. Reserve until needed for the recipe.
Mediterranean Couscous Salad
  1. Cook the Israeli Couscous according to the package directions in a pot of salted boiling water- about 8 minutes, Drain the couscous and lightly rinse. Once rinsed place in a large salad serving bowl.
  2. Meanwhile, while couscous is cooking, lightly steam the trimmed bite-sized asparagus- about 3-4 minutes.
  3. Add halved grapes tomatoes, chopped Roasted peppers, quartered artichoke hearts, diced red onion, chopped parsley, Greek Olives, and Goat's Cheese to the salad serving bowl. Toss to combine, then add 3/4 of the Homemade Greek Dressing and toss again to combine.
  4. Place in the refrigerator for 60 minutes to chill, remove from refrigerator and add the remaining 1/4 Homemade Greek Dressing, lightly toss the Mediterranean Couscous Salad before serving.

 

 

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This Mediterranean Couscous Salad is packed with Pearl Couscous, artichoke hearts, tomatoes, red onions, fresh parsley, asparagus, olives, roasted red peppers, Goats Cheese and tossed in a homemade vinaigrette dressing. It's the perfect side dish for any meal, Pot Luck, or gathering.

 

 

 

 

 

 

© Heidy L. McCallum and The McCallum’s Shamrock Patch, 2019-2013 unauthorized use and/or duplication of content/ material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Heidy L. McCallum and The McCallum’s Shamrock Patch with proper and specific direction to the original content.

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