Orzo and Shrimp Salad with Asparagus

This is a dish that goes together quickly, can be doubled easily, and looks beautiful! Orzo , shrimp and fresh asparagus tossed with a light olive oil, lemon and basil dressing. Perfect for a warm weather picnic. Can be served chilled, at room temperature, or heated!

Original recipe makes 6 servings


12 extra-large shrimp
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 quarts water
8 ounces orzo pasta
1 pound fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1 inch pieces
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 green onions, chopped
1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons honey mustard
2 tablespoons minced fresh basil
salt and pepper to taste

  • PREP

    20 mins

  • COOK

    20 mins


    2 hrs 40 mins


  1. Peel shrimp, reserving the shells. In a skillet over medium heat, cook the garlic and shrimp in 2 tablespoons of olive oil, stirring frequently to keep the garlic from browning. When shrimp are cooked through, remove from heat, cool and cut into 1/2-inch pieces.
  2. Bring water to a boil in a Dutch oven over high heat. Add shrimp shells, boil for 5 minutes, then strain out shells and discard. Stir in the orzo and cook for 5 minutes. Stir in the asparagus pieces and continue cooking until the pasta is al dente, about 4 minutes. Drain into a mesh sieve, and rinse in cold water.
  3. Toss pasta and asparagus with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, shrimp, and green onions until evenly coated. In a separate bowl, whisk the vinegar, lemon juice, mustard, and basil until incorporated. Pour over pasta mixture and toss well; season to taste with salt and pepper. Chill for 2 hours.


Calories: 302 kcal
Carbohydrates: 33.5 g
Cholesterol: 86 mg
Fat: 10.8 g
Fiber: 2.9 g
Protein: 18.6 g
Sodium: 112 mg