Vegan Roasted Veggie Orzo Salad is a healthy, budget-friendly dish, packed with plant-based protein and heart healthy fats. Crispy roasted chickpeas and toasted walnuts add a delicious crunch to this warm and comforting salad.
Perfect for fall, or anytime of year, this nutrient-rich warm orzo salad takes less that 30 minutes to make from start to finish. Serve warm or chilled. Both ways are equally delicious.
This was inspired by my Sweet Potato & Quinoa Salad with Tahini Dressing on this site, as well as this Tortellini & Chickpea Kale Salad.
- Sweet potato
- Brussels sprouts
- Red onion
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- Red Wine Vinegar
- Maple syrup
- Dried basil
- Dried oregano
- Crushed red pepper
- Fresh parsley
- Dried cranberries
- Salt & pepper
See recipe card for quantities.
This recipe is simple to follow, and there's not much cleaning up to do, which is why it's a weeknight favorite.
Although it's called, 'Vegan Roasted Veggie Orzo Salad', most small pasta shapes will work in this recipe. You can use what you already have on hand.
Cook the pasta according to the directions on the packet until al dente.
Preheat the oven to 425ºF.
Transfer the chopped veggies to a large bowl. Toss with olive oil, and salt to taste.
While the veggies are cooking, toss the chickpeas and walnuts in olive oil, and salt to taste. Transfer to a medium rimmed baking sheet and place in the oven on a rack below the veggies.
Meanwhile, make the dressing for the Vegan Roasted Veggie Orzo Salad. Add the dressing ingredients to a small jar with a lid, or use a medium bowl. Shake the jar until all the ingredients are fully incorporated, or whisk until combined. Set aside.
You will need give the dressing another good shake or whisk right before adding it to the salad.
Add the dressing and orzo to the other ingredients, and mix to combine. Serve warm or refrigerate before serving.
- Veggies - broccoli, cauliflower, baby potatoes, bell peppers, butternut squash, and carrots would all work great in this recipe
- Pasta - use gluten free orzo (Jovial Grain-Free Cassava Orzo is a fave) , or any small pasta shape
- Beans - The chickpeas can be replaced with cannellini, pinto, navy or Great Northern beans. Add the drained beans directly to the salad without roasting.
- Nuts - omit the walnuts, or substitute for slivered almonds, roasted peanuts, pistachios, or pecans
- Dried cranberries - substitute for dried raisins, or dried tart cherries
See this Orzo Salad with Oil-Free Pesto on my website for an oil-free pasta salad.
Grating garlic directly into the dressing adds more flavor. A microplane or fine grater works perfectly. Or you can use a garlic press if preferred.
Consider using a silicone baking sheet to line your baking sheet. It's nonstick, cuts down on parchment paper waste, and is easy to clean. Choose a brand that is heat resistant up to 500ºF that can withstand broiling.
Refrigerate any remaining Vegan Roasted Veggie Orzo Salad in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Enjoy chilled or reheat for serving.
These ingredients don't stand up well to freezing.
Toss the veggies in balsamic vinegar, coconut aminos, lemon juice, or veggie broth for roasting. Season with a variety of herbs and spices you have on hand.
Use my oil-free tahini dressing in this Creamy Tahini Chickpeas u0026 Veggies recipe.
My 12 favorites are: broccoli, cauliflower, eggplant, carrots, kale, beets, red onions, butternut squash, bell peppers, Brussels sprouts, asparagus, and potatoes.
Roasting veggies brings out their sweetness, making them irresistible even to kids.
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Vegan Roasted Veggie Orzo Salad
- 1 cup dry orzo
- 1 medium-large sweet potato peeled, cut into ½-inch pieces (about 2 cups)
- ¾- pound Brussels sprouts trimmed, and quartered (about 3 cups)
- 1 medium red onion roughly chopped
- Drizzle of olive oil plus more for dressing
- Salt to taste
- 15 ounces chickpeas canned, drained and rinsed
- ⅔ cup walnuts
For the dressing:
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- ¼ teaspoon dried basil
- ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
- ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1 small garlic clove
- ¼ teaspoon salt or to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- ⅓ cup chopped fresh parsley
- ⅓ cup dried cranberries
- Preheat the oven to 425ºF.
- Cook the orzo according to the directions on the packet until al dente.
- Roast the vegetables: Place the sweet potato, Brussels sprouts, and red onion into a large bowl. Toss with a generous drizzle of olive oil and salt to taste. Transfer to a large nonstick rimmed baking sheet. Roast for about 20 minutes, or until the sweet potato is fork tender. Toss after 10 minutes so they cook evenly.
- Roast the chickpeas & walnuts: Place the chickpeas and walnuts in two separate medium bowls. Toss with a drizzle of olive oil, and salt to taste. Transfer to a small rimmed baking sheet. Place the chickpeas on one side, and the walnuts on the other. Roast with the vegetables on a lower rack.
- Remove the walnuts: Remove the walnuts from the oven after about 5 minutes, or once they are golden and fragrant. Continue cooking the chickpeas until the vegetables are ready.
- Make the dressing: Meanwhile, add the olive oil, red wine vinegar, maple syrup, basil, oregano, and crushed red pepper to a small jar with a lid. Grate the garlic into the jar using a microplane or fine grater. Add salt and pepper. Cover and shake until well combined. Set aside.
- Assemble: Transfer the orzo, sweet potato, Brussels sprouts, red onion, chickpeas, and walnuts to a large bowl. Add the dressing, parsley, and cranberries. Mix to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
- For serving: Serve warm or refrigerate for later use and enjoy as a chilled salad.
- Substitute canned chickpeas for 1 ½ cups cooked.
- Cook the veggies in a single layer for even browning.
- Keep checking on the walnuts as they brown quickly.
- Roasting the chickpeas is optional. They can be added directly to the salad.
This information is provided as a courtesy and is an ESTIMATE only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased can change the nutritional information in any given recipe.
Ran out of olive oil half way through the recipe so I substituted the olive oil in the dressing for tahini and it came out sooooo good!!!
I bet it's good with tahini! Thank you.