Orzo Pasta Salad

This light & fresh Orzo Pasta Salad is full of colorful veggies and a delicious homemade dressing. Perfect for BBQs or meal prep it for the week!

The post Orzo Pasta Salad appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Every now and then I come across a recipe at a restaurant that I absolutely love, then I spend the next few moments trying to guess what’s in it so I can recreate it at home…for a lot less! Well today, I’m sharing one of those recipes! This Orzo Pasta Salad is inspired by a dish at one of my favorite restaurants, J. Alexander’s, and it’s now going into my pasta salads rotation!🙌 It includes fresh veggies like bell peppers, tomatoes and onion, along with tart & slightly sweet dried cranberries, and the best homemade vinaigrette dressing to bring it all together. This pasta salad recipe will definitely become a new favorite!

Overhead view of Orzo Pasta Salad in a white serving bowl with wood serving spoons on the side.

Ingredients For Orzo Pasta Salad

The restaurant version of this recipe includes wild rice, but I decided to leave the rice out because for one…wild rice can be expensive, and two…wild rice takes quite a bit of time to cook. But I absolutely love this version instead! So here’s everything you need to make this simple orzo pasta salad recipe:

  • Orzo: Orzo is a small shaped pasta that looks similar to rice. It cooks quickly and is popular in soups and salads just like this one. If you don’t have access to orzo pasta, you can certainly substitute it for a different small-shaped pasta instead.
  • Vegetables: A combination of veggies like bell peppers, roma tomatoes, red onion and sweet corn, adds lots of color, flavor, and texture. I made sure to dice the vegetables small so they match the proportion size of the rest of the ingredients.
  • Dried Cranberries: One of the things I love most about this pasta salad is the addition of the dried cranberries. It adds a tart & slightly sweet flavor and compliments the sweet corn and dressing perfectly!
  • Vinaigrette Dressing: To keep things light and fresh, I opted for a homemade vinaigrette dressing made with simple pantry ingredients and sweetened with a bit of honey. It’s so good!!

Variations & Recipe Tips!

  1. Switch it up! If you’re looking to change up the flavor profile, then try adding some Kalamata olives, crumbled feta cheese, and greek salad dressing, for a Mediterranean-inspired orzo pasta salad!
  2. Wanna make it more filling? Add some grilled chicken, grilled shrimp, or a can of chickpeas (drained & rinsed). 
  3. Cool down the pasta. Don’t forget to give the cooked pasta and corn a quick rinse under cool water to stop the cooking process and cool off the pasta before adding the veggies, herbs and cheese.

Serving Suggestions

This light and summery orzo pasta salad is perfect for BBQs and cookouts! Add it to your summer menu and enjoy it with some turkey burgers or grilled salmon. It’s also great with leaner proteins like Baked Cod, Pan-Seared Chicken Breasts, or even some Garlic Butter Shrimp on the side.

Side view of orzo pasta salad in a white serving bowl.
Overhead view of Orzo Pasta Salad in a white serving bowl with wood serving spoons on the side.
Print

Orzo Pasta Salad

This light & fresh Orzo Pasta Salad is full of colorful veggies and a delicious homemade dressing. Perfect for BBQs or meal prep it for the week!
Course Lunch, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Total Cost $9.99 recipe / $1.24 serving
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 8 (1 cup each)
Calories 265kcal

Ingredients

Vinaigrette Dressing

  • 1/3 cup olive oil $0.96
  • 3 Tbsp white wine vinegar $0.39
  • 1/2 Tbsp Dijon mustard $0.04
  • 1 clove garlic, minced $0.08
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil $0.05
  • 1/4 tsp salt $0.02
  • 1 Tbsp honey $0.18

Pasta Salad

  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked orzo pasta $1.49
  • 1 cup frozen corn $0.41
  • 1 red bell pepper $1.59
  • 1 yellow bell pepper $1.59
  • 2 roma tomatoes $0.78
  • 1/2 red onion $0.40
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries $1.70
  • 1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley $0.29
  • 1/4 tsp salt $0.02

Instructions

  • Start by making the vinaigrette dressing. In a medium bowl whisk together the olive oil, white wine vinegar, Dijon mustard, minced garlic, basil, salt and honey until smooth. Set the vinaigrette aside.
  • Cook the orzo pasta according to the package directions. Add the frozen corn to the boiling water during the last 3 minutes of the pasta cook time.  Drain the pasta and corn in a colander and rinse briefly with cool water to cool off the pasta.
  • While the pasta is cooking, prepare the veggies. Dice the bell peppers and tomatoes, finely dice the red onion, measure out the dried cranberries, and chop the parsley.
  • Transfer the pasta and corn to a large bowl. Add the chopped vegetables, chopped parsley and dried cranberries.
  • Give the vinaigrette dressing another stir. Pour the dressing over the pasta salad and season with 1/4 tsp salt. Toss the salad ingredients together until everything is evenly coated in the dressing. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to enjoy.

See how we calculate recipe costs here.

Notes

*Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 265kcal | Carbohydrates: 41g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 10g | Sodium: 163mg | Fiber: 3g
Overhead view of two white bowls of orzo pasta salad.

How to Make Orzo Pasta Salad – Step by Step Photos

Vinaigrette dressing for orzo pasta salad.

Start by making the vinaigrette dressing. In a medium bowl whisk together 1/3 cup olive oil, 3 Tbsp white wine vinegar, 1/2 Tbsp Dijon mustard, 1 minced garlic clove, 1/2 tsp basil, 1/4 tsp salt and 1 Tbsp honey until smooth. Set the vinaigrette aside.

Cooked orzo and corn drained in a colander.

Cook 1 1/2 cups of orzo pasta according to the package directions. Add 1 cup frozen corn to the boiling water during the last 3 minutes of the pasta cook time.  Drain the pasta and corn in a colander and rinse briefly with cool water to cool off the pasta.

Chopped vegetables on a cutting board.

While the pasta is cooking, prepare the veggies. Dice 1 red bell pepper, 1 yellow bell pepper, 2 roma tomatoes, finely dice 1/2 red onion, measure out 3/4 cups dried cranberries, and chop 1/4 cup fresh parsley. (Frozen corn is pictured on the cutting board, but is added in the previous step with the boiling pasta).

Cooked orzo, corn, and chopped vegetables in a large bowl with vinaigrette dressing being poured on top.

Transfer the cooked pasta and corn to a large bowl. Add the chopped vegetables, chopped parsley and dried cranberries. Give the vinaigrette dressing another stir. Pour the dressing over the pasta salad.

Orzo pasta salad ingredients mixed together in a large bowl.

Toss the salad ingredients together until everything is evenly coated in the dressing. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to enjoy!

Overhead view of orzo pasta salad in a large white serving bowl with wooden serving spoons on the side.

Enjoy this light, fresh and summery orzo pasta salad at your next BBQ, cookout or family gathering! Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

The post Orzo Pasta Salad appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Spicy Jalapeño Pimento Cheese Recipe

This Spicy Jalapeño Pimento Cheese Recipe is made with sharp cheddar, cream cheese, mayonnaise, and a kick of jalapeños. It’s perfect with crackers!
The post Spicy Jalapeño Pimento Cheese Recipe appeared first on Southern Bytes.

This Spicy Jalapeño Pimento Cheese Recipe is made with sharp cheddar, cream cheese, mayonnaise, and a kick of jalapeños. It's perfect with crackers!

The post Spicy Jalapeño Pimento Cheese Recipe appeared first on Southern Bytes.

Sorbet

Made with simple and budget-friendly ingredients, this sorbet recipe is endlessly customizable and ridiculously delicious.

The post Sorbet appeared first on Budget Bytes.

There’s nothing I crave more on a hot summer day than a refreshing scoop of sorbet. It’s lighter and more refreshing than ice cream, so I never feel too full after eating it, and it’s so fast and easy to whip up! Made with simple and budget-friendly ingredients– frozen fruit, maple syrup, and lemon juice– this sorbet recipe is endlessly customizable and ridiculously delicious.

a serving of swirled yellow and purple sorbet in a glass coupe.

As someone who has a major interest in vegan and gluten-free options, let me tell you, this sorbet checks all the boxes and does not disappoint! It’s naturally gluten-free, vegan, and brings the summertime vibes year round. It will keep in your freezer in an air-tight container for up to one month without losing any quality. (But, trust me, all restraint goes out the window once you try this sorbet. I don’t see any leftovers in your future!)

What is Sorbet?

Sorbet is a frozen dessert made from blended fruit, juice or water, and sugar (though in this case, I’m using maple syrup to achieve a “chewier” and less icy texture.) It is typically fat-free (but if you choose to make an avocado sorbet, please invite me over), and it’s considered a great palate cleanser in multi-course meals. This sorbet recipe is smooth and has a great mouthfeel, a bit creamier and less icy due to the frozen banana addition!

Sherbet Vs. Sorbet

The main difference between sherbet and sorbet is that sherbet contains dairy, whereas sorbet does not. Sherbet has a creamier and slightly less icy texture, but the fruit flavors may be less pronounced. A great bonus is that sorbet is vegan!

Ingredients for Sorbet

Here’s what you’ll need to make sorbet:

  • Frozen Mango: I used frozen mango chunks which come in a pretty big package, so plan to use the rest to make meal prep smoothie packs!
  • Real Maple Syrup: Traditional sorbet has sugar and ice added, but this sorbet is special because the maple syrup (agave syrup also works—and it’s cheaper!) gives it a creamier, smoother texture. The lack of added ice/water makes it easy to re-freeze and enjoy another day without the risk of it turning icy and losing its smooth mouthfeel.
  • Lemon Juice: Adds tartness to enhance the natural flavor of the fruit and counteract the sweetness.
  • Frozen Ripe Bananas: Help achieve a creamy texture without adding any dairy! Make sure to use very ripe bananas for the creamiest texture. Grab a big bunch on sale, cut them up, and freeze for meal prep.

Flavor Variations

The great thing about this sorbet recipe is how adaptable it is. Swap out the mango for any of these frozen fruits:

  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Açai berry
  • Pitted cherries
  • Pineapple chunks
  • Raspberries
  • Blackberries
  • Dragon fruit
  • Peaches

Tips for Making Sorbet

Sorbet can be a bit finicky, so follow these tips for a perfect scoop every time!

  • Use frozen fruit. This allows us to skip adding ice, creating a richer texture and a more concentrated flavor. This is a nutrient-dense treat!
  • To achieve the swirl look, just make batches of different flavors separately and then pour each flavor into a larger freezer-safe dish.
  • Make sure you cover your sorbet when you pop it in the freezer to set! Fruit gets a gummy unpleasant texture if it becomes freezer-burnt.
overhead view of different flavors of sorbet in glass coupes.
a serving of swirled yellow and purple sorbet in a glass coupe.
Print

Sorbet

Made with simple and budget-friendly ingredients, this sorbet recipe is endlessly customizable and ridiculously delicious.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Total Cost $4.43 recipe / $0.88 serving
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 5 (3-ounce) scoops
Calories 108kcal

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 2 cups frozen mango chunks $2.98
  • 1/4 cup real maple syrup $1.07
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice $0.05
  • 1-2 very ripe frozen bananas (about 1 cup diced) $0.33

Instructions

  • Gather frozen mango chunks, maple syrup, lemon juice, and frozen banana.
  • Blend the mango, maple, lemon juice, and banana in a blender on high.
  • Stop periodically to scrape the sides of your blender down, pushing the fruit towards the blade, then blend again until completely smooth and creamy. Do not add water! Just keep stopping and scraping to achieve the creamy, dense texture of this sorbet.
  • Pour the sorbet batter into a freezer-safe bowl or dish (preferably one that has an air-tight lid).
  • Cover and freeze sorbet for approximately 1 hour, until it is not quite rock hard just soft enough to scoop with an ice cream scoop or spoon. Enjoy!

See how we calculate recipe costs here.

Nutrition

Serving: 1(3-ounce) scoop | Calories: 108kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 0.3g | Sodium: 2mg | Fiber: 2g
3 scoops of mango sorbet in a glass coupe.

how to make Sorbet – step by step photos

ingredients for sorbet on a cutting board.

Gather 2 cups frozen mango chunks, 1/4 cup real maple syrup, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, and 1 cup of frozen banana.

mango and banana chunks in a blender.

Blend 2 cups frozen mango chunks, 1/4 cup real maple syrup, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, and 1 cup of frozen banana in a blender on high.

side view of partially blended mango sorbet in a blender with a rubber spatula.

Stop periodically to scrape the sides of your blender down, pushing the fruit towards the blade, then blend again until completely smooth and creamy.

blended mango sorbet in a blender.

Do not add water! Just keep stopping and scraping to achieve the creamy, dense texture of this sorbet.

mango sorbet in a white rectangular dish.

Pour the sorbet batter into a freezer-safe bowl or dish (preferably one that has an air-tight lid).

frozen mango sorbet in a white rectangular dish.

Cover and freeze sorbet for approximately 1 hour, until it is not quite rock hard just soft enough to scoop with an ice cream scoop or spoon. Enjoy!

Make the sorbet of your dreams come true with this simple recipe!

The post Sorbet appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Portobello Mushroom Burger

This vegetarian, oven-baked, Portobello Mushroom Burger is loaded with healthy veggies and full of bold umami flavor! It’s perfect for busy weeknight dinners and vegan-adaptable.

This oven-baked Portobello Mushroom Burger is loaded with healthy veggies and full of bold umami flavor! It's perfect for busy weeknight dinners and vegan-adaptable.
This vegetarian, oven-baked, Portobello Mushroom Burger is loaded with healthy veggies and full of bold umami flavor! It's perfect for busy weeknight dinners and vegan-adaptable.

Grilled Lemongrass Shrimp

Tender mouthwatering Grilled Lemongrass Shrimp is easy and versatile. Serve with coconut rice, in lettuce wraps, or in a rice noodle bowl. Gluten-free.

Tender mouthwatering Grilled Lemongrass Shrimp is easy and versatile. Serve with coconut rice, in lettuce wraps, or in a rice noodle bowl. Gluten-free.
Tender mouthwatering Grilled Lemongrass Shrimp is easy and versatile. Serve with coconut rice, in lettuce wraps, or in a rice noodle bowl. Gluten-free.

Pasta Salad

This easy Pasta Salad is full of fresh flavors and tossed in a zesty Italian dressing. It will be the star at your next BBQ or summer cookout!

The post Pasta Salad appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Friends, this is the pasta salad recipe that I grew up on! A simple mix of cucumbers, tomatoes, bell peppers, and pasta, all tossed together in a zesty and tangy Italian dressing. It’s a classic! And it was always everyone’s favorite side dish at summer BBQs and cookouts! It’s fresh, vibrant, and it definitely feeds a crowd. There are also lots of ways you can customize this easy pasta salad to fit within your budget and make it your own. I’m sharing a basic version in today’s post, but I’ll also share lots of fun ways to switch things up!

Overhead view of pasta salad in a large white serving bowl with wood serving utensils on the side.

Ingredients You’ll Need

Here’s everything you need to make this traditional pasta salad recipe:

  • Pasta: I opted for rotini pasta because it’s easy to grab with a fork and it’s little crevices are perfect for holding the salad dressing. With that being said, my mom always made this recipe with spaghetti pasta…and it was always a hit! So use your favorite pasta or whatever you have on hand. Bowtie pasta also works well!
  • Vegetables: A variety of fresh vegetables like bell peppers, cucumber, onion and tomatoes adds lots of color, flavor, and texture! I chose red and orange bell peppers for lots of color, but feel free to use whichever color you prefer.
  • Salad Dressing: Tangy Italian dressing is a classic with this recipe and brings the entire salad together. I’ll list a couple more options below.
  • Cheese: Just a little bit of feta cheese adds a nice creamy-salty flavor to the salad.
  • Fresh Herbs: Fresh chopped parsley tops off this veggie-packed pasta salad!

Pasta Salad Dressing

Since I usually make this recipe for potlucks & BBQs, along with a few other dishes, I find it a lot easier to buy bottled Italian dressing simply for convenience. But if you have a well stocked pantry, you can totally make your own vinaigrette dressing to add to this pasta salad. You can also try our homemade Italian dressing, a greek vinaigrette, or a balsamic vinaigrette dressing.

What Else Can I Add?

Salad Seasoning: McCormick salad seasoning is another popular ingredient in pasta salads and something that I often use when making this recipe. I was tempted to add it this time until I saw the current price at my local store. It’s definitely a splurge! I also find myself not using the entire bottle before it expires. But I’m happy to report this version tastes just as good without the added seasoning mix. But if you do have the extra coins, add 2 Tbsp of salad seasoning to your pasta salad for even more flavor!!

Other Ingredients: What I love most about pasta salads is that they’re super easy to customize. Try swapping out some of the veggies or adding any of these options: 

  • Broccoli florets, roughly chopped
  • Kalamata olives
  • Roasted red peppers
  • Zucchini
  • Salami
  • Mozzarella cubes or pearls
  • Parmesan cheese

Storing Leftovers

This pasta salad recipe stores very well in the refrigerator. It often tastes better the next day after the salad has had plenty of time to marinate in the dressing. You can store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Side view of pasta salad in a white serving bowl.
Overhead view of pasta salad in a large white serving bowl with wood serving utensils on the side.
Print

Pasta Salad

This easy Pasta Salad is full of fresh flavors and tossed in a zesty Italian dressing. It will be the star at your next BBQ or summer cookout!
Course Lunch, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Total Cost $13.44 recipe / $1.34 serving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Total Time 18 minutes
Servings 10 (1.5 cups each)
Calories 307kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. rotini pasta $1.25
  • 1 english cucumber $1.49
  • 1 red bell pepper $1.59
  • 1 orange bell pepper $1.59
  • 10 oz. grape tomatoes $2.49
  • 1/2 red onion $0.37
  • 2 Tbsp fresh chopped parsley $0.29
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese $1.83
  • 16 oz. bottled zesty Italian dressing $2.50
  • 1/4 tsp salt $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp freshly cracked black pepper $0.02

Instructions

  • Cook the pasta according to the package instructions. Drain the pasta in a colander and rinse briefly with cool water to cool off the pasta. Drain well.
  • While the pasta is cooking, prepare the veggies. Slice the cucumber into half moons, chop the bell peppers, slice the tomatoes in half, thinly slice the red onion, and chop the parsley. Set the vegetables and chopped parsley aside.
  • Once the pasta has drained, transfer it to a large bowl. Add the chopped vegetables, chopped parsley and feta cheese.
  • Pour the dressing over the pasta salad. Toss the salad ingredients together until everything is evenly coated in the dressing. Add salt and pepper to taste, I added about ¼ tsp of salt and ¼ tsp ground black pepper. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to eat.*

See how we calculate recipe costs here.

Notes

*I prefer to let the pasta salad refrigerate overnight or at least 4 hours prior to serving so all the flavors can marry together. If you are making this ahead of time, wait to add the feta cheese until right before serving.
**I portioned this into generous servings, but this recipe can definitely feed a lot more people if you’re serving this with other side dishes.

Nutrition

Serving: 1.5cups | Calories: 307kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 11g | Sodium: 558mg | Fiber: 3g
Overhead view of a serving of pasta salad on a plate with a fork on the side.

How to Make Pasta Salad – Step by Step Photos

Cooked and drained rotini pasta in a colander.

Cook 1 lb. of rotini pasta according to the package instructions. Drain the pasta in a colander and rinse briefly with cool water to cool off the pasta. Drain well.

Chopped pasta salad vegetable ingredients on a cutting board.

While the pasta is cooking, prepare the veggies. Slice 1 cucumber into half moons, chop 1 red bell pepper and 1 orange bell pepper, slice 10 oz. of grape tomatoes in half, thinly slice 1/2 red onion, and chop 2 Tbsp of fresh parsley. Set the vegetables and herbs aside.

Pasta salad ingredients added to a large white serving bowl.

Once the pasta has drained, transfer it to a large bowl. Add the chopped vegetables, chopped parsley and 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese.

Italian dressing being poured over pasta salad.

Pour 16 oz. of zesty Italian dressing over the pasta salad. Sometimes I like to reserve 1/4 cup of the dressing to add right before I serve it.

Pasta salad being tossed and mixed together with serving utensils.

Toss the salad ingredients together until everything is evenly coated in the dressing. Add salt and pepper to taste, I added about ¼ tsp of salt and ¼ tsp ground black pepper. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to eat. I prefer to let it refrigerate overnight or at least 4 hours prior to serving so all the flavors can marry together. If you are making this ahead of time, wait to add the feta cheese until right before serving.

Overhead view of pasta salad in a large white serving bowl with wood serving utensils on the side.

Enjoy this tasty pasta salad recipe at your next summer BBQ, potluck, or family gathering!

Close up view of pasta salad in a white serving bowl.

The post Pasta Salad appeared first on Budget Bytes.

No-Churn Vanilla Ice Cream

No-Churn Vanilla Ice Cream
No ice cream maker? No problem! No Churn Vanilla Ice Cream is easy to make at home without a machine! But why stop there when a plain vanilla base can quickly be customized with your favorite mix-in combinations and flavors! …

no churn vanilla ice cream in a cone.

No-Churn Vanilla Ice Cream

No ice cream maker? No problem! No Churn Vanilla Ice Cream is easy to make at home without a machine! But why stop there when a plain vanilla base can quickly be customized with your favorite mix-in combinations and flavors! Easy Homemade Ice Cream Our No Churn Vanilla Ice Cream recipe is the easiest way…

READ: No-Churn Vanilla Ice Cream

Red White and Blue Fruit Salad

This red white and blue fruit salad is packed with fresh fruits, crunchy walnuts, and chewy marshmallows– perfect for Fourth of July!

The post Red White and Blue Fruit Salad appeared first on Budget Bytes.

My Red White and Blue Salad is Summer in a bowl. Christmas and Thanksgiving are great holidays, but I’m a summer gal through and through. There’s just something magical about the smell of sunscreen and fresh cut grass mingling with drool-worthy scents wafting from the grill. Are you with me? Now, all you need is an ice cold beverage, some sunshine, and this Red White and Blue Fruit Salad! You’re going to want to save this recipe, because it’s perfect for Memorial Day and the Fourth of July.

overhead view of a bowl of red white and blue fruit salad.

The only thing I love more than celebrating ‘Merica and honoring our veterans is berries being in season! I pretty much refuse to buy berries when they aren’t in season because the quality is never as good and they are never quite as budget-friendly. I’m also a sucker for nostalgia and I feel like there was always a whipped cream fruit salad variation at all of my family gatherings growing up, probably because fruit salads require almost zero prep and they are always a crowd pleaser! This one is extra special because it brings the patriotic vibes, too.

What is Red, White, and Blue Fruit Salad?

This patriotic fruit salad utilizes red, white, and blue fruits to create a colorful display fit for Independence Day or Memorial Day (or anytime I’m craving a refreshing and fun fruit salad). Strawberries represent the red, bananas and apples represent the white, and blueberries represent the blue. I added a little bit of crunch with some walnuts for texture. Topped off with some classic Cool Whip, this is one refreshing salad that’s a great BBQ side dish or dessert.

Ingredients

Here’s what you’ll need to make this red white and blue fruit salad:

  • Fruit: I used a combination of bananas, strawberries, apples, and blueberries to create this patriotic salad.
  • Sugar: A little bit of granulated sugar makes the berries glisten and helps prevents the apples from browning.
  • Walnuts: Crushed walnut pieces add a bit of savory nuttiness and crunch.
  • Marshmallows: Add pops of sweetness. Mini marshmallows are the perfect size, but you can also quarter full-sized marshmallows.
  • Cool Whip: The perfect garnish for this fresh and fruity salad. You can also make your own whipped cream if you prefer!

What Else Can I Add?

  • Fruits: If you’re not needing this to be particularly red, white, and blue, you can add any fruits your heart desires. Blackberries, raspberries, pitted cherries, concord grapes, pomegranate arils, or chopped pineapple would all keep the red white and blue theme going! Just be careful to avoid smushing the fruit when tossing the ingredients so you can see the distinct red, white, and blue colors throughout.
  • Crunch: Pecans, cashews, sunflower seeds, or homemade granola are all great sources of crunch.

How To Store Leftovers

This fruit salad can be prepared up to 24 hours before you plan to serve it, although the tender berries may shed some juices as they sit and the bananas and apples may brown a bit. To achieve true fireworks, prepare just before your company arrives! It will keep for up to 3 days in the refrigerator.

overhead view of servings of red white and blue fruit salad in stemless wine glasses.
overhead view of a bowl of red white and blue fruit salad.
Print

Red White and Blue Fruit Salad

This red white and blue fruit salad is packed with fresh fruits, crunchy walnuts, and chewy marshmallows– perfect for Fourth of July!
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Total Cost ($11.74 recipe / $1.46 serving)
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 8 people (about 1 cups each)
Calories

Ingredients

  • 2 bananas $0.46
  • 2 cups quartered strawberries $2.50
  • 1 diced apple $1.00
  • 2 cups blueberries (1 pint) $2.99
  • 2 tsp. sugar $0.01
  • ½ cup walnut pieces $2.64
  • 1 cup mini marshmallows $1.00
  • 1 cup Cool Whip $1.14

Instructions

  • Dice bananas into ¼ inch pieces, quarter strawberries, core and dice the apple, gather walnut pieces, blueberries and mini marshmellows.
  • Toss bananas, strawberries, apple, and blueberries in a big mixing bowl with sugar.*
  • Fold in walnut pieces and mini marshmallows to sugared fruits and toss to combine.
  • Top each serving with a generous dollop of Cool Whip or homemade whipped cream and extra walnut pieces.

See how we calculate recipe costs here.

Notes

*The sugar will make your berries glisten and will slow down the apples from browning!

Nutrition

Serving: 1cup
scooping a bite from a serving of red white and blue fruit salad in a stemless wine glass.

how to make Red, White, and Blue Fruit Salad – step by step photos

ingredients for red white and blue fruit salad on a cutting board.

Dice 2 bananas into ¼ inch pieces; quarter 2 cups of strawberries; core and dice 1 apple; and gather ½ cup walnut pieces, 2 cups of blueberries and 1 cup of mini marshmallows.

cut fruits tossed with sugar in a white bowl.

Toss the 2 diced bananas, 2 cups of quartered strawberries, 1 diced apple, and 2 cups of blueberries in a big mixing bowl with 2 tsp sugar.

red white and blue fruit salad mixed up in a white bowl with a side of cool whip.

Fold in ½ cup walnut pieces and 1 cup mini marshmallows to sugared fruits and toss to combine.

overhead view of servings of red white and blue fruit salad in stemless wine glasses with cool whip.

Top each serving with about 1 Tbsp of Cool Whip and extra walnut pieces.

close-up side view of a serving of red white and blue fruit salad in a stemless wine glass with cool whip.

This easy-to-make red white and blue fruit salad will be the star of your July 4th BBQ!

I would like to express my endless gratitude for the veterans who have sacrificed their lives while defending our country and their families.

The post Red White and Blue Fruit Salad appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Niçoise Salad

Niçoise salad is protein-packed, crunchy, and oh-so-satisfying– perfect for meal prep to keep you full all week long.

The post Niçoise Salad appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Springtime is salad season, and boy, do I have the perfect hearty salad for you! Niçoise salad is protein-packed, crunchy, and oh-so-satisfying. It’s perfect for meal prep and will keep you full all week long. I love the mixture of textures and flavors in this salad, and while it takes a bit of work to make, it is so worth it! The hard-boiled eggs, protein-packed tuna, crispy green beans and creamy potatoes are the defining ingredients of this salad, in my opinion. The unique-yet-familiar ingredients are what make this salad a classic– and for good reason! This is one of the recipes I always whip out whenever I have a friend who could use a little meal prep TLC when they are super busy. Trust me, it’s a winner!

close-up overhead view of nicoise salad in a white bowl.

What is Niçoise Salad?

Niçoise salad is a filling and flavorful salad that traces its origins to Nice, France. The term “Niçoise” literally means, “in the style of Nice”. This tasty salad is chock full of tomatoes, onions, hard-boiled eggs, tuna, green beans, and roasted potatoes and is tossed in a light dressing. It makes a great meal prep lunch for the long week ahead! It’s a classic!

Ingredients

Here’s what you’ll need to make Niçoise salad:

  • Romaine Lettuce: This classic crunchy lettuce is the perfect base for our salad. Buy whole heads rather than pre-chopped bagged lettuce to save some dough! Whole heads of romaine will keep longer in the fridge, too.
  • Grape Tomatoes: Add a pop of juicy acidity to this salad.
  • Red Onion: Adds a bit of bite to the recipe and a wonderful crunchy texture.
  • Hard-Boiled Eggs: Have a creamy, mild flavor and add a boost of protein! Check out our fool-proof process to make your hard-boiled eggs perfect every time.
  • Chunk Light Tuna: The main protein in this dish. Using canned is a great budget-saving tip! I prefer to use tuna packed in water.
  • Green Beans: Add a vegetal flavor, a pop of color, and delightful crunch.
  • Baby Potatoes: Add creaminess and richness to the salad. Thanks to the potatoes, this salad will keep you feeling full! You can use any variety of mini potatoes. I used fingerling for this recipe. Our air fryer potatoes are done in no time.
  • Olive Oil: Helps the seasonings stick to the potatoes and adds a subtle Mediterranean flavor to the dish.
  • Cucumber: Gives this salad crisp, hydrating, and aromatic characteristics.
  • Radishes: Add a little spicy kick to every bite and add beautiful color. After all, we eat with our eyes!
  • Olives: Any olives you love will do, but the briny and easy-to-find kalamata always does the trick!
  • Seasonings: Garlic powder, onion powder, and dried dill along with salt and pepper make the hearty potatoes so flavorful!

What Kind of Dressing Should I Use?

Niçoise salad is pretty flavorful on its own, so I recommend a light dressing like a lemon vinaigrette that helps cut the richness and elevates the flavors. For something a little creamier, try our favorite lemon dill tahini dressing! Our honey mustard sauce pairs well, too!

What Else Can I Add?

Niçoise salad is a great vehicle to use up those veggies taking up space in the fridge (or pantry!). I like to add:

  • Kalamata olives
  • Halved radishes
  • Chopped cucumbers
  • Capers
  • Artichoke hearts

How to Store Leftovers

I recommend storing the salad separately from the dressing for the best results. The components will keep in separate air-tight containers for up to 3 days in the refrigerator and can be tossed together before serving. If you’re meal prepping, add a bit of everything to your airtight containers and keep the dressing on the side. Then, just grab and go!

servings of nicoise salad in white bowls.
nicoise salad in a white bowl.
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Niçoise Salad

Niçoise salad is protein-packed, crunchy, and oh-so-satisfying– perfect for meal prep to keep you full all week long.
Course Salad
Cuisine French
Total Cost ($10.64 recipe / $1.77 serving)
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 6 (about 2 cups salad)
Calories 231kcal
Cost $2.16 per serving

Ingredients

  • salad dressing* see note
  • 1/2 Tbsp olive oil $0.09
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder $0.05
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder $0.05
  • 1/2 tsp dried dill $0.07
  • 1/2 lb. baby potatoes, quartered $1.08
  • 1 cup green beans, stems removed $1.50
  • 4 cups water $0.00
  • 4 hard-boiled eggs, halved $0.76
  • 2 heads romaine lettuce, chopped $2.25
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved $2.29
  • 1/2 red onion, julienned $0.40
  • 7 radishes, halved or sliced $0.69
  • 1 cucumber, peeled and chopped $0.64
  • 1/4 cup olives, strained $1.04
  • 2 5oz. cans chunk light tuna $2.00
  • 1 pinch salt and pepper, to taste $0.10

Instructions

  • Choose your favorite salad dressing. (see note)
  • Combine olive oil, garlic powder, onion powder and dried dill in a small bowl. Whisk to combine.
  • Quarter the baby potatoes and toss them in the olive oil spice blend.
  • Air fry quartered potatoes at 400°F for 15 minutes, shaking halfway through (OR roast the potatoes at 400°F until golden and tender, about 30 minutes.)
  • Bring 4 cups of water to a rolling boil in a medium pot or large saucepan.
  • Remove any stems from green beens. Blanch the green beans by tossing them into the boiling water and then turning off the heat. Allow them to sit in the hot water for a very brief period of time, about 3 minutes, until they are bright green. Quickly, transfer them to an ice bath to stop them from cooking any further. Set aside.
  • Hard boil, peel, and halve the eggs. Chop the romaine lettuce, halve the grape tomatoes, julienne the onion, halve or quarter radishes, peel and chop cucumber, and strain olives.
  • Strain the canned tuna and break it apart with a fork.
  • Toss all ingredients together and lightly dress your salad. Finish with a crank of freshly ground pepper and sea salt.

See how we calculate recipe costs here.

Notes

*I recommend something light like a lemon vinaigrette (or try our lemon dill tahini dressing or honey mustard sauce) that won’t compete with all of the bold flavors in this salad.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 231kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 10g | Sodium: 368mg | Fiber: 6g
nicoise salad in a white bowl with wooden salad spoons.

how to make Niçoise Salad – step by step photos

yellow dressing in a white bowl.

Choose your favorite salad dressing.

seasoned halved baby potatoes in a white bowl.

Combine 1/2 Tbsp olive oil, 1/2 tsp garlic powder, 1/2 tsp onion powder and 1/2 tsp dried dill in a small bowl. Whisk to combine. Quarter the 1/2 lb baby potatoes, toss in the olive oil and herbs.

roasted halved baby potatoes in a white bowl.

Air fry 1/2 lb quartered potatoes at 400°F for 15 minutes, shaking halfway through (OR roast the potatoes at 400°F until golden and tender, about 30 minutes.)

blanched green beans being transferred to ice water.

Bring 4 cups of water to a rolling boil in a medium pot or large saucepan. Remove any stems from green beens. Blanch 1 cup green beans by tossing them into the boiling water and then turning off the heat. Allow them to sit in the hot water for a very brief period of time, about 3 minutes, until they are bright green. Quickly, transfer them to an ice bath to stop them from cooking any further. Set aside.

overhead view of prepped ingredients for nicoise salad on a cutting board.

Hard boil, peel, and halve 4 eggs. Chop 2 heads of romaine lettuce, halve 1 cup of grape tomatoes, julienne 1/2 a red onion, halve or quarter 7 radishes, peel and chop 1 cucumber, and strain 1/4 cup of olives.

drained tuna in a white bowl.

Strain the 2 cans of tuna and break it apart with a fork.

nicoise salad in a white bowl.

Toss all ingredients together and lightly dress your salad. Finish with a crank of freshly ground pepper and sea salt.

The post Niçoise Salad appeared first on Budget Bytes.

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