Beloved by many as the “Barefoot Contessa,” Ina Garten is famed for her unfussy yet refined approach to the kitchen. Her couscous salad is no different, with a simple yet delicious combination of ingredients. This Ina Garten Couscous Salad is perfect for a quick lunch or as a side dish at a formal dinner. This dish, with its vivid hues and hearty flavors, is ideal for ushering in the warmer months of spring and summer.
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💓 Why You’ll Love This Ina Garten Couscous Salad
- With a mix of ingredients like sweet raisins, acidic lemon juice, and salty feta cheese, Ina Garten’s couscous salad has a wonderful and harmonious flavor profile.
- This salad is both healthy and filling because it contains a variety of fresh veggies, whole grain couscous, and protein-rich chickpeas. This dinner will leave you feeling satiated and nourished.
- Easy to prepare and perfect for a quick lunch or dinner, Ina Garten’s couscous salad is a fan favorite. It’s ideal for weeknights when you don’t have much time to cook.
- This salad is adaptable because you can change up the ingredients to suit your tastes. It’s as delicious whether served hot or cold.
- This salad is great for meal prepping since it can be prepared in advance and stored in the refrigerator for use as a quick and healthy dinner any day of the week.
What Is Ina Garten Couscous Salad Recipe?
Ina Garten’s Couscous Salad is a flavorful and simple side dish that combines Israeli couscous with a variety of vegetables, herbs, and a light citrus dressing. The dish typically includes Israeli couscous, cucumber, tomatoes, red onion, garlic, fresh parsley, fresh mint, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper.
- 1 1/2 cups couscous
- 1 1/2 cups boiling water
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (2 lemons)
- 1/4 cup good olive oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup minced scallions, white and green parts (1 bunch)
- 1 cup chopped fresh mint leaves (2 bunches)
- 1 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley (1 bunch)
- 1 hothouse cucumber, unpeeled, seeded, and medium-diced
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes, cut in half
- 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
- 1/2 teaspoon dried hot red pepper flakes
🔪How To Make Couscous Salad
- Place the couscous in a heat-proof bowl. Pour the boiling water over it, and add the lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper.
- Stir well, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and allow to stand at room temperature for 15 minutes.
- Fluff the couscous with a fork and add the scallions, mint, parsley, cucumber, tomatoes, lemon zest, and red pepper flakes.
- Mix well and taste for seasonings. Serve at room temperature.
Here are Ina Garten’s couscous salad preparation suggestions:
- Utilize only the best ingredients: this salad’s success hinges on its reliance on fresh, uncomplicated elements like couscous, vegetables, and herbs.
- Toast the couscous: To enhance its nutty flavor, roast the couscous on a dry skillet for a few minutes before preparing it in any way.
- Add the dressing while the couscous is warm: Coating the couscous with dressing while it’s still warm can help it better absorb the dressing’s flavor.
- Adjust the recipe: To your liking by adding or removing items. Roasted red peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, and feta cheese are just a few examples.
- Chill before serving: Put the salad in the fridge for at least an hour before serving for the greatest flavor and texture.
- Adjust seasoning: Season to taste, adding extra salt, pepper, or lemon juice as desired.
- Serve at room temperature: Salad should be served at room temperature, so remove it from the refrigerator 30 minutes before serving.
🍴 What To Serve With Couscous Salad?
The couscous salad from Ina Garten works equally well as a complement to a heartier main dish or as a standalone meal. The following are some suggestions for complementary dishes:
- Chicken or shrimp on the grill.
- Veggies including eggplant, zucchini, and bell peppers roasted in the oven.
- Eat with hummus and tzatziki sauce on a fresh pita or naan.
- Mixed greens salad tossed in a basic vinaigrette to serve as a side dish.
- The couscous salad would be perfect alongside other Mediterranean foods like falafel, baba ganoush, and tabbouleh.
🥶 How To Store Leftovers
Any leftover couscous salad will keep for three to four days in the fridge if stored properly in an airtight container. These are some novel approaches to leftover storage and repurposing:
- Meal prepping is simple: just portion out the salad and keep it in separate containers.
- Mason jar salad: To make a salad in a mason jar, layer the dressing at the bottom, then the couscous, and finally the vegetables and herbs. Put the lid on the jar and put it in the fridge until you’re ready to eat.
- Couscous stuffed vegetables: Such as bell peppers, tomatoes, and zucchini can be packed with the remaining couscous salad. Bake the vegetables with the cheese on top until they are soft and the cheese is melted.
- Couscous bowl: Repurpose your leftover couscous by creating a “couscous bowl” by topping it with a protein source (such grilled chicken or shrimp), some roasted vegetables, and a sprinkle of vinaigrette.
- Couscous fritters: Leftover couscous can be used to make fritters by combining it with eggs and breadcrumbs. Fry in a pan until crispy, then serve with a sauce for dipping.µ
Can You Frezze Couscous Salad?
Couscous salad can be frozen, but the texture may become slightly mushy after thawing. If you do decide to freeze it, make sure to store it in an airtight container or freezer bag, and remove as much air as possible before freezing. When you’re ready to eat it, let it thaw in the refrigerator overnight and then give it a good stir before serving.
Leftover couscous salad can be reheated in a few different ways:
- Microwave: Cooking couscous salad in the microwave is as simple as placing the necessary amount in a microwave-safe dish and covering it with a moist paper towel. Cook for 1-2 minutes on high heat, stirring once.
- Stovetop: melt a bit of butter or oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Stir the reheated couscous salad frequently while adding the salad’s dressing.
- Oven: set the temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (175 degrees Celsius). Cover the unused couscous salad with foil and bake it. Put it in the oven for about ten minutes, or until it’s warm.
No matter what you do, make sure to toss the couscous salad on a regular basis so that it heats up evenly. To avoid the dish from drying out when reheating, simply add a small amount of water or broth.
What kind of vegetables can you add to couscous salad?
Cherry tomatoes, cucumber, bell pepper, red onion, carrots, and zucchini are just few of the vegetables that go well in couscous salad.
Can you make couscous salad ahead of time?
You can prepare a couscous salad a day or two in advance and enjoy it cold from the refrigerator. It’s possible, though, that the seasoning and dressing will need to be tweaked before being served.
What dressing is good for couscous salad?
Couscous salad is delicious with a simple dressing of olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Honey, mustard, and herbs are just a few of the additional components that can be added for a more nuanced taste.
Can you use quinoa instead of couscous in salad?
You may use quinoa for couscous in any salad recipe. Quinoa adds a nutty flavor and is high in protein, making it a great addition to salads.
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Ina Garten Couscous Salad Nutrition Fact
Serving Size: 1 cup
- Calories: 92
- Total Fat: 1.4 g
- Saturated Fat: 0.2 g
- Trans Fat: 0 g
- Cholesterol: 0 mg
- Sodium: 82 mg
- Total Carbohydrate: 17.2 g
- Dietary Fiber: 2.1 g
- Sugars: 1 g