It’s that day of the week again when Monday blues turn a shade darker and weekend seems a lifetime away but we have a perfect knack to lift up your drooping mood in a jiffy with a mouthwatering recipe of lemon orzo chickpea salad that can be munched on as a healthy snack. Attention herb lovers and vegans! If you are looking for a fresh, vibrant and easy-to-make snack that is oozing with flavours and a perfect welcome to Spring-Summer evenings, try this recipe of lemon orzo chickpea salad that hardly takes 10 minutes to prepare and will surely turn your Tuesday frown upside down.

Before you raise your eyebrow at the thought of healthy and the inclusion of orzo pasta together, we have some news for you. Orzo is different from regular flour and is made with semolina flour which comes in a refined state and includes a little protein and fiber.

Mix it with all those veggies, chickpeas and herbs and you have a health-packed bowl that is not only nutritious but also serves as a perfect meal to beat the hunger pangs. Check out the recipe of lemon orzo chickpea salad here:

Ingredients:

Orzo Salad

1 1/2 cups dry orzo

1/2 medium cucumber, deseeded and cubed

1/4 medium red onion, finely diced

1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

1/4 cup sliced almonds

2 tbsp nutritional yeast

1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

Handful chopped parsley, minced

Zest of one lemon (optional)

1 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)

Lemon Garlic Dressing Recipe

Salt and pepper to taste

Lemon Garlic Dressing

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 tbsp white balsamic vinegar

Juice of one lemon

1-2 cloves garlic, finely minced

1 tbsp agave syrup

1/4 tsp dry basil

1/4 tsp dry oregano

Salt and pepper to taste

Method:

Cook orzo according to package recommendations and instructions. Drain the orzo but do not rinse it! Just set it aside and prep the remaining ingredients.

To prepare your lemon garlic dressing, to a small bowl or jar combine olive oil, white balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, garlic, agave, basil and oregano. Adjust with salt and pepper to taste.

Now, to a large bowl add in your orzo then add in cucumber, onion, tomatoes, almonds, nutritional yeast, chickpeas, parsley, lemon zest, red pepper flakes and pour over your dressing.

Toss the salad together to coat and mix ingredients well. Adjust salt and pepper to taste and serve. To really allow the flavours to meld, chill for at least an hour in the fridge before serving. Enjoy!

Benefits:

Apart from containing protein which aides bone, muscle and skin health, chickpeas also contain other nutrients which help prevent a number of health conditions. They can be included in a healthful diabetes meal plan, help manage blood pressure, support heart health, help protect the body from cancer and also have a positive impact on brain and nervous system function.