Orzo Salad with Low Fat Chipotle Ranch Dressing – bursting with great fresh flavour, this tasty pasta salad can even be made fat free by using non-fat yogurt in the dressing!
The best picnics and barbeque meals are often defined by the great side dishes that are served and this orzo salad is sure to be remembered. We served this fantastic little pasta salad at one of the earliest grilling get-togethers of the season and it was very well received indeed. It is a very flavorful cold salad that’s also delicious served with good cold cuts for a tasty lunch. The fact that the dressing uses fat-free yogurt as a base is an added bonus and we use whole wheat pasta to make it even heather and more nutritious. If you cannot find whole wheat orzo any small whole wheat pasta like fusilli can be easily substituted.
- 1 to 1 1/2 cups dry whole wheat orzo or other small whole wheat pasta
- 1/2 cup sliced radishes
- 2 small tomatoes diced
- 1 small red onion finely chopped
- 1 yellow orange or red bell pepper, diced small
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh herbs chives, basil, thyme and oregano all work well or a combination of any
- pinch black pepper
- 1 cup drained non fat or low fat yogurt
- 1 clove garlic very well minced
- 1 tbsp basil very finely chopped
- 1 tbsp fresh dill finely chopped
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
- 2 tsp Dijon mustard
- 1/2 tbsp honey
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 tsp chipotle powder more or less to taste
- 2 tbsp buttermilk or nonfat milk
Begin by making the dressing.
Strain the yogurt by lining a colander with coffee filters and then pour in the yogurt. Place the colander over a bowl so that there is ample space between the bottom of the colander and the bottom of the bowl. Let the yogurt drain for several hours or overnight in the fridge.
Whisk together well until all the ingredients are well combined. let stand in the fridge for a couple of hours or overnight for the flavors to fully blend and develop.
Cook the orzo in salted boiling water until cooked al dente. drain and rinse with cold water.
Drain well and add the prepared ranch dressing along with the radishes, tomatoes, red onion, bell peppers, herbs and black pepper.
Toss together well. Refrigerate until ready to serve.