Easy 'Budget Friendly' Dinner Recipe Of The Week ~ Orzo Salad with Shrimp and Asparagus


  • 2 cups uncooked orzo pasta
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 2 teaspoons grainy mustard
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh thyme , chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 bunch asparagus , sliced into 1 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 pound shrimp , peeled and deveined
  • salt, pepper, and cayenne , to taste
  • 2 cloves garlic , minced
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes , halved


  • Cook orzo according to package directions, al dente.
  • In the meantime, in a large mixing bowl, combine lemon juice, lemon zest, mustard, thyme, salt, and pepper; whisk. While whisking, slowly add the 1/2 cup olive oil. Whisk until combined and smooth. (Reserve 2 tablespoons.)
  • Drain orzo completely and toss in the large bowl with the most of the vinaigrette. Set aside.
  • In a large nonstick skillet, heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add asparagus and reserved 2 tablespoons vinaigrette; cook for about 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Sprinkle the shrimp with salt, pepper, and cayenne to taste; add to the pan. Cook for another 3 minutes until shrimp are pink and opaque, and asparagus is tender. Add in the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 20 seconds. Remove from the heat and toss in the cherry tomatoes.
  • Add mixture to the bowl of orzo and toss to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.
  • Serve warm or cold and enjoy!
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