Lemon Asparagus Couscous Salad with Tomatoes

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Lemon Asparagus Couscous Salad with Tomatoes makes a vibrant Spring pasta salad, perfect to bring to a potluck or to serve as a BBQ side dish.

Lemon Asparagus Couscous Salad
Lemon Asparagus Couscous Salad

Pearl couscous (otherwise known as Isreali couscous) is essentially perfectly round pasta with a delightful chewiness that’s ideal as a base for salads like this one! Here I tossed it with asparagus, tomatoes and lemon juice to make a vibrant Spring pasta salad that is perfect as a main dish or even to make as a side dish if you are grilling for Mother’s Day this weekend! Serve this with a Whole Roasted Chicken, Grilled Salmon Kabobs or Grilled Bourbon Chicken.

Lemon Asparagus Couscous Salad

I’m not usually a fan of the taste of whole wheat pasta, but I don’t mind it at all when the pasta is a smaller. Orzo and pearl couscous are all delicious in pasta salads. When I use whole wheat I cook it a few minutes longer than I would if I eat it warm. I just adore it’s pearl shaped texture and also found it to be the perfect shape for my daughter when she started eating solid foods, years ago.

What to serve with Lemon Asparagus Couscous Salad

Any protein would be great, here’s a few suggestions:

Meal Prep

This couscous salad can be eaten room temperature or chilled, and leftovers are great the next day for lunch. Refrigerate up to 3 days.

Lemon dressing for couscous saladLemon Asparagus Couscous Salad

 

Lemon Asparagus Couscous Salad
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4.86 from 14 votes
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Lemon Asparagus Couscous Salad with Tomatoes

1
170 Cals 6.5 Protein 30 Carbs 4 Fats
Prep Time: 5 mins
Total Time: 30 mins
Yield: 5 servings
COURSE: Lunch, Salad, Side Dish
CUISINE: American
Lemon Asparagus Couscous Salad with Tomatoes makes a vibrant Spring pasta salad, perfect to bring to a potluck or to serve as a BBQ side dish.

Ingredients

  • 6 oz whole wheat pearl couscous
  • 3/4 lb thin asparagus spears, tough ends trimmed
  • 1 1/2 cups grape tomatoes, quartered
  • 1/4 cup red onion, minced
  • 1 1/2 lemons, juiced
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley, minced
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • fresh cracked pepper, to taste

Instructions

  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, add asparagus and cook until tender, about 3 minutes.
  • Remove with a large slotted spoon and rinse in a colander in the sink under cold water to stop it from cooking.
    steamed aspagus
  • Add the couscous to the boiling water and cook according to package directions.
  • Chop the asparagus into small 1/2 inch pieces.
  • Drain the couscous and rinse under cold water, place in a large bowl.
  • Add the chopped asparagus, tomatoes, red onion, lemon juice, olive oil, parsley, salt and pepper to the bowl.
  • Taste for salt and pepper and serve room temperature or chilled.

Notes

Makes 5 1/2 cups.

Nutrition

Serving: 1generous cup, Calories: 170kcal, Carbohydrates: 30g, Protein: 6.5g, Fat: 4g, Sodium: 10mg, Fiber: 5g
WW Points Plus: 4
Keywords: Under 30 Minutes, Vegetarian Meals

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66 comments

  1. I love this salad! I’ve made it twice for guests and they loved it and my husband loves it as well. Light, refreshing and different. As a texture person, this is excellent! We like it best chilled. This has made it to my list of go-to recipes, especially when entertaining.
    I do add a little more lemon and onion to suit our tastes. I appreciate recipes that use a modicum of restraint on some flavors which allow adjustment to suit our family’s needs.
    Thank you so much for this recipe!

  2. I made this as a main meal salad, plant based eater.  Added garbanzo beans and basil.  Amazing!

  3. Love this – making for a third time!

  4. I found this to be very bland.

    • I made it exactly to the recipe first. After that I doubled the red onion and chopped rather than minced it. I also added a little more lemon juice. We really like it, but I think it is a good template for adding spices of your choice. Maybe some five spice, cinnamon, cumin, or curry? Dill or tarragon? I just made it again (we use the smaller size couscous because my husband is not crazy about the larger pasta) and might try adding a spice to my portion.

  5. I love this recipe! So far I’ve enjoyed it with roasted or rotisserie chicken. 

  6. We loved this recipe. I added large shrimp to it for a tasty light dinner

  7. Love this recipe! Used quinoa instead of cous cous because it was what we had and added some chickpeas and feta. 

  8. I made this for my lunch meal prep this week and the first few bites when I tested it were amazing! I added a large grilled chicken breast chopped up to the bowl before I divided the servings into daily containers and I can’t wait for lunch! I was not happy with the whole wheat couscous I ordered from Amazon, so I may get regular pearl couscous to try next time. This is going to be one of my favorite salads this summer!

  9. I made this salad for a barbeque side dish. There was not a grain left over. Everyone, including men and a teenager commented on how good it was. The assembly was fairly easy. The quartering of the grape tomatoes was the only time consuming part and I did that while my grain was cooking. I used farro as that is what I had and it was perfect. Kudos to Gina for another great recipe!

  10. love your recipes they are so good and perfect for my sise family, thank you keep up the good work!

  11. I always cook any pasta or grain I use in a salad in chicken broth/stock rather than water. It gives it a much better flavor and it doesn’t taste like chicken if anyone is concerned about that. 
    I’d add a bunch of fresh chopped mint and parsley to this,
    and make a great vinaigrette. I’m not fond of olive oil so I use as little as possible in my vinaigrette recipe and I use fresh orange rather than lemon; some chopped garlic, olive oil, orange juice, champagne vinegar (or white wine vinegar), S & P. That’s it. 

  12. Just delicious! Made recipe as it is written. Served as a side for a luncheon. This salad got better each day.
    Easy. Fresh tasting. Pretty too!

  13. So easy and delicious! Tasted even better the next day. Will definitely make it again!

  14. I had never made cous cous before this recipe and now I love it. this is my favorite summer salad, which I pair with either grilled chicken or 2 drumsticks as a meal-prepped work lunch!