BBQ Chicken Orzo Salad gives a whole new meaning to “fast” food. If you’ve missed 3 barbecues or more this summer due to work, kids, school, or life in general, this salad will remind you of what you’re missing! Not only is it a healthy lunch to pack, but it’s so easy to make!
I’ll be honest, salads were never my favorite meal, but they grew on me as a healthy way to eat my greens (yuck!!), and get a healthy dose of protein. This salad is absolutely a well balanced, filling lunch. It even makes spinach taste great!
Oh, guess what, it’s also gluten free! Chickpeas are a great substitute for my vegan friends, but more on that, later!
To make this recipe vegan: Roast your chickpeas in the oven slathered with a tablespoon of barbecue sauce – here’s a little more information on roasting chickpeas.
- 1 large chicken breast
- 1 tablespoon spicy barbecue sauce (or any favorite marinade)
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 1½ uncooked gluten free orzo pasta
- 1 cup of baby spinach, washed and chopped
- 1 large tomato, chopped into eighths
- ½ a lime
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and preheat your oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, toss the chicken strips with barbecue sauce and pepper. Place each uncooked marinated piece of chicken on the prepared baking sheet and bake for 8 minutes. Use tongs to flip the chicken breast.
- Remove the chicken from the oven and slice with a sharp knife into thin strips.
- Cook orzo pasta according to package instructions. Drain (don't rinse) the orzo.
- Divide the cooked orzo into two bowls, add tomatoes, chopped spinach and the cooked chicken strips to each bowl as well.
- Squeeze lime over each bowl.