Orzo Citrus Salad

This salad is gluten free, vegan, and made with natural sugar
Servings: 4
Jump to Recipe
Time: 25 mins

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Orzo Citrus Salad

This citrus orzo salad is easy to make, ready in 15 minutes, and packs a bright citrus punch!  Made with delicious orzo, juicy pomegranate juice, and tangy arugula.  It’s gluten free, vegan, and made with only natural sugar!


Orzo Citrus Salad Ingredients


Orzo Citrus Salad ingredients


How to make Orzo Citrus Salad:

  1. Cook Orzo! Cook orzo as directed by package and either keep in the fridge until ready to use (if prepping the salad) or use while warm.  This is our favorite orzo.
  2. Make the dressing.  While orzo is cooking, add the mustard, vinegar, pomegranate juice, oil, and salt and pepper to a jar or bowl and mix well.
  3. Mix arugula and oranges. Toss together in a large bowl.
  4. Add pomegranate seeds (or dried cranberries) and orange to the arugula and orzo mixture.  Mix well.
  5. Add dressing.  Add half of the dressing and toss the salad until completely coated.  You can add the rest of the dressing if salad is not totally coated or keep the remaining dressing in the fridge for later.  Be aware that avocado oil may solidify in the fridge after a couple days, depending on the brand.  Just let the dressing warm up to room temperature or pop in the microwave for 15 seconds and mix again.
  6. Enjoy!  We like this to have this with Mediterranean style salmon



Quick Facts

How long does this dish take?  25 minutes (including cook time for orzo)

How much does this make?  4-5 servings

Does this meet my dietary needs?  This recipe is vegan and refined sugar free and can easily be gluten free by omitting the orzo or using your favorite gluten free orzo

How many bowls should I plan for this meal?  One bowl and 1 jar (for dressing)

How long does this keep?  1 week in the fridge, without dressing on it or light dressing on it or 2-3 days in the fridge with heavy dressing on it

Is it freezer friendly?  No

Can I pack this for lunch?  Sure!  Just keep coldish (next to an ice pack, in a cooler, would be fine)


Substitute Options

Arugula: Spinach can be used in place of arugula but it will not have the punch that arugula has.  Arugula has a lemony and peppery flavor that is difficult to replicate.

Orzo: You can find Orzo here. Otherwise, any small pasta can be used or your gluten free favorite.

Orange & Blood Orange: Just one type of orange or the other can be used.  Clementines, tangerines, etc, can also be used in place of the oranges and blood oranges.

Pomegranate Seeds: Dried cranberries (preferably ones without added sugar, like these) can be used in place.  We had to use these for the video because fresh pomegranate seeds were nowhere to be found in the dead of winter in the Midwest….  Use what you have!

Spicy Brown Mustard:  Any brown or yellow mustard can be used.

White Vinegar:  Rice vinegar can be used in place of white vinegar.  Apple cider could be used, but we recommend not using it because it has a stronger, overpowering, flavor.

Olive Oil:  Avocado oil an be used in place of olive oil.

Pomegranate Juice:  Cranberry juice or orange juice could be used.  Preferably one without added sugar.


Fun Fact! 

Blood Oranges get their color from anthocyanins.  This is not commonly found in citrus, but is the same reason berries are red.  Blood oranges are also seasonal to the winter, developing during the cold nights.  They are native to Sicily and are a protected fruit in Italy!  (Source).


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Try these other delicious recipes!

Spicy Kale Chips

Creamy Mediterranean Salmon 

Lemon Garlic Brussels Sprouts

Creamy Vegan Gnocchi


Orzo Citrus Salad Image

Orzo Citrus Salad

Servings: 4
Total Time: 25 minutes
This citrus orzo salad is made with delicious orzo, juicy pomegranate juice, and tangy arugula!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: dinner
Cuisine: Mediterranean
Keyword: arugula, citrus, gluten free, natural sugar, orzo, pomegranate, salad
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Calories: 91 kcal



  • 1 16 oz Orzo
  • 4 cups baby arugula
  • 1 orange
  • 1 blood orange
  • 1/4 cup pomegranate seeds or dried cranberries


  • 1/4 cup pomegranate juice
  • 2 tbsp brown mustard
  • 2 tbsp white vinegar
  • 2 tbsp avocado oil or olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt and pepper


  • Make orzo as directed on package.
  • Peel and cut oranges into bite size wedges.
  • Make dressing by combining all dressing ingredients in a jar or cup and shake or stir until well mixed.
  • Mix orzo and arugula in a large bowl until orzo is evenly distributed.
  • Add half of the dressing to the salad and mix until well coated.
  • Add oranges and pomegranate seeds to salad bowl and gently mix.
  • Enjoy!



Nutritional Information is an estimate and for informational purposes only.
*Note: substitution options can be found above in the substitution section of this post.


Calories: 91kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 298mg | Potassium: 140mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 476IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 38mg | Iron: 1mg
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Welcome to Joy to the Food! We’re so glad you’re here. We’re Mika and Dan, and the two Nalas (our spunky pups). We’re all about easy and affordable recipes that bring joy to the kitchen and make life stress free!