Sometimes it's hard to find a good lunch option that you can feel good about, this Mediterranean Pearl Couscous Salad full of fresh veggies has all your favorite flavors without the guilt. It's easy to make and takes less than 20 minutes! Give it a try today.
This Mediterranean couscous salad recipe with fresh ingredients makes a great lunch and can be served with a variety of protein options. This delicious salad is a light meal and will fuel your body to take on the rest of your day!
It's the ideal recipe for Sunday meal prep, if you are not into meal prep, next time you make this recipe just double it so that you have enough to bring to lunch the next day. It's also a great substitute for pasta salad.
Israeli couscous is made up of small, round granules that are a little bit like pasta. 2-3 times larger than couscous. Pearl, or Israeli, couscous is roasted rather than dried, giving it a nutty flavor and a thick, chewy texture. You can find pearl couscous in most grocery stores.
Pearl couscous is a fun and easy addition to any recipe. You can use this versatile grain in salads, soups, or even as the main dish!
kalamata olive: Kalamata olives are a type of olive that is native to the Kalamata region in Greece. These olives are large and black with a smooth, fleshy texture. They have a salty, slightly tangy flavor with hints of bitterness. Kalamata olives are often used in Greek and Mediterranean cuisine.
Cherry Tomato: Cherry tomatoes are a type of small, round tomato that is typically red in color. These tomatoes are sweet and juicy with a thin skin. Cherry tomatoes can be eaten raw or used in cooked dishes.
Salty feta cheese: Feta is a type of cheese that is made from sheep's milk or goat's milk. It is a white cheese with a crumbly texture. Feta has a tangy, salty flavor and is often used in salads or as a topping on pizzas or other dishes.
Pearl Couscous: Pearl couscous is a type of pasta made from durum wheat semolina regularly call semolina flour. It is similar in appearance to regular couscous, but it is slightly larger and has a more chewy texture. Pearl couscous can be used in salads or as a side dish. It is also sometimes used as a replacement for rice or other grains. These couscous cooks in about 20 minutes.
Cucumber: Use fresh crisp cucumber. English cucumbers are a type of cucumber that is long and slender with smooth, dark green skin. These cucumbers have a mild flavor and are often used in salads or as a garnish. English cucumbers can be found in most grocery stores.
Red Wine Vinegar: Red wine vinegar is made from red wine that has been allowed to oxidize. This vinegar has a tart, acidic flavor with notes of the wine. It is often used in salad dressings or as a marinade for meats.
Oregano: Oregano is a type of herb that is related to mint. It has a pungent, earthy flavor and is often used in Italian and Greek cuisine. Oregano can be used fresh or dried. It is often used to flavor meats, soups, and sauces.
See the recipe card below for the quantities
In a saucepan, bring a large amount of water to a boil. Then add 2 cups of couscous and simmer for 20 minutes.
Add all of the ingredients to a large bowl and mix to combine everything.
Substitutions and Variations
- Use Black olives in place of the Kalamata olives.
- Substitute Feta cheese for crumbled goat cheese.
- Add grilled chicken or garbanzo beans to make it a main dish.
- Try different types of vinegar
- Add 1 small red onion and bell peppers to add more colors
- Add 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice just before serving
You can store the salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days. Pearl couscous will continue to absorb dressing, so you may need to add more before serving if it has been stored for a long period of time.
Can I freeze the pearl couscous salad?
No, we do not recommend freezing this salad as the Pearl couscous will become mushy when thawed.
- Use a large bowl to mix everything together.
- You can substitute pearl couscous for regular couscous.
- Serve cold or at room temperature.
- Add more dressing if needed before serving.
- Store in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to three days.
- Do not freeze the salad.
- Pearl couscous will continue to absorb dressing, so you may need to add more before serving if it has been stored for a long period of time.
To prepare Israeli or pearl couscous, you'll need about 1 ¼ cups of water or vegetable broth for every 1 cup of dry grain
Israeli couscous—also called, giant couscous, and pearl couscous—is often thought of as a whole grain, but it's actually a type of pasta made of semolina flour and water.
No, couscous is not gluten-free. Despite its rice-like appearance, couscous is made from semolina, which is a granule of durum wheat.
The couscous salad can be served as a side dish or main course. It pairs well with grilled meats or vegetables. You could also serve it with a light soup or salad.
The pearl couscous has a chewy texture and slightly nutty flavor. It is similar in appearance to regular couscous, but it is slightly larger and has a more chewy texture. Pearl couscous can be used in salads or as a side dish. It is also sometimes used as a replacement for rice or other grains.
More Salad Recipes
Basmati Rice Salad with Edamame
Mediterranean Pearl Couscous Salad
- 2 cups pearl couscous uncooked
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes cut in half
- ½ English cucumber
- ½ cup feta crumbled
- ¼ cup kalamata olive
- ⅓ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup red wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoon oregano
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- In a saucepan, bring a large amount of water to a boil. Then add 2 cups of couscous and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Drain and rinse under cold water.Allow this mixture to cool before adding the ingredients
- Cut the cherry tomatoes in half and chop the cucumber in small cubes.
- Finely chop the kalamata olives.
- Crumble the feta with your hand or chop it in small cubes with a knife.
- Add all of the ingredients in a large bowl and mix to combine everything.
- Serve cold
- The salad can be kept for up to 4 days in an airtight container in the fridge.
- These ingredients don't stand up well to freezing.
Thank you. This is now one of my go to recipes’. I used a box of Trader Joe’s Israeli couscous, which had a little over 1-1/2 cups couscous, and followed its instructions to cook it. I replaced the tomatoes with a red bell pepper, diced in 1/4-3/8” cubes, cuz that’s what I had in the fridge, and a couple forkfuls of capers that were screaming at me to add them in. Sooooo delicious! I will bring this to the next work potluck!
Thank you Rob! I'm glad you liked it! It's always a good idea to use what you have in the fridge, and capers are soooooo good 🙂