The pros: Trader Joe's Mediterranean Style Orzo Pasta Salad is new and makes for a good grab and go item if you are going to a BBQ or need a quick side dish.
The cons: Could use a bit more acidity. If you plan on mixing everything in this bowl, you'll need to move it to a new container.
The verdict: With the summer and BBQ season now upon us you may find yourself dining more al fresco and be invited to more get togethers now that the weather is improving.
But let's face it, sometimes you just don't have time. Maybe it is a last minute invite. Maybe its a last minute remembering of something you were invited to weeks ago. So you need to bring something.
This isn't bad. It's not on the level of amazing. First of all you are going to need another container to mix the contents of this plastic container. There is absolutely no space or wiggle room here.
Next you have pasta that could have been removed a minute or two earlier as it is quite soft. There is a good amount of spinach here to be mixed in, otherwise someone is getting a salad instead of pasta salad.
Within the salad is a mix of red onion, sun dried tomatoes, feta cheese, and olives. The most assertive of these elements is the onion. Everything else was fairly muted in flavor. While this salad is dressed, it is dressed lightly.
I would prefer there to be more of an acidic kick to it. But if you are taking it out of its original container, then by all means give it a quick taste. I think a quick squeeze of fresh lemon would add to this.
This was more enjoyable to nosh on than say Trader Joe's Lemon Basil Pasta Salad. The flavors here are Mediterranean but are pretty muted (other than the red onion). You'll get little hints of the Mediterranean, but it becomes more of a basic pasta salad.
For $4.99 this is a decent grab and go option. It will never be as good as homemade. But as a pre-made item, it wasn't bad either.
Here is the visual run down of what you get if you buy this product:
The package of Trader Joe's Mediterranean Style Orzo Pasta Salad :
The nutritional information and the ingredients:
Out of the package you get:
Would I buy this again? If I needed a quick grab and go to a last minute BBQ, then yes, I would reach for Trader Joe's Mediterranean Style Orzo Pasta Salad again. It wasn't bad. It did not blow me away, but is better than many of the other options in the refrigerated section.
Want to see more items I've reviewed from Trader Joe's? Click on Thoughts & Reviews of Trader Joe’s for a searchable list.
Did you try it? Let me know what you think in the comments section!
I do think I'm going to try this but I probably will add extra feta ,Roma tomatoes and pick out the olives LOL
You don't like olives either!?!? I hate them. However, there is no residual brine flavor here. I picked around them. But they did not flavor this item too much either. Thanks as always for sharing!
Yup..... I absolutely cannot stand olives of any kind. Not in salad, not in pizza, not in pasta, not in martinis etc. They are basically just briny sour salt balls.
Ok I finally was able to find this at my Trader Joes. It was previously sold out every time I went in. It was pretty good, but not great as is. For one thing it could use more spinach. It could also use a touch more olive oil and some acid component like lemon juice. I added a splash of extra virgin olive oil, some freshly crumbled Mediterranean herb feta, freshly ground pepper and a small splash of lemon juice. It was really good like that. I just wish I'd had some extra spinach to mix with it. Oh yea- and I picked out all those pesky sluggy olive slices.
I agree completely. And you made me laugh about those olives. Hopefully yours did not include too many of them. I know we share that strong dislike of them. Thanks as always for stopping by!
Sandy Sanders says
DISAGREE ~~~ I JUST HAD IT LAST NIGHT AND IT WAS AMAZING !!!!!
Hey Sandy! I'm glad you liked it. I do love it when people share their thoughts on here, even if they don't agree with my assessment. How boring it would be if we all only enjoyed the same thing. Thanks for taking the time to stop by and share your thoughts on this item.
The way it comes is fine but I added leftover grilled chicken and few more fresh tomatoes. Definitely would buy again in a pinch to take somewhere, but googled a recipe to make it myself too if wanted to.
Hey Nan! Pasta salad isn't that hard to make which is why I was a bit harsh on this one. But yes, this absolutely needs just a little extra something to lift it up. Thanks so much for taking the time to stop by and share!
Sandie Carignan says
I just had the salad and love it.. i have several family members that need gluten-free..is there an orzo that is gf? I would love to make it for them…