Greek Couscous Salad is a flavorful, vegetable filled, high-protein meal. It’s great to enjoy as a family or meal prep for quick and healthy lunches for the week.
This Greek Couscous Salad is one of my husband’s favorite meal prep lunches. It’s refreshing, healthy, filling, and doesn’t require heating. For more meal prep ideas, check out my Kalua Pork, Mini Meatloaf, and Chicken Pasta Salad.
Greek Chicken Salad
No, this isn’t an authentic Greek recipe but it has a lot of delicious Greek flavors! The juicy tomatoes, crisp cucumbers, and crunchy onions make this salad so refreshing! There is so much color and texture going on in this dish with all the vegetables, chicken, chickpeas, and couscous. It’s pretty, yummy, easy, and health– everything you want in a meal!
Ingredients for Greek Salad:
- Pearl/ Israeli Couscous– This can be found in local grocery stores near the rice or in the international aisle.
- Cucumber– English cucumbers are my preference because their seeds are smaller (big seeds=bitter) and have thinner skin.
- Tomatoes– Grape tomatoes work best in this salad because they are sweet and stay intact when tossed in the salad.
- Chickpeas– These legumes are full of fiber, protein, and vitamins. Simply pop open a can, drain, and rinse.
- Kalamata Olives– These have a strong flavor so a little goes a long way.
- Red Onion– This type of onion is mild making it great for eating raw in dishes like salads.
- Feta– This tangy salty cheese is a Greek cheese made from sheep’s milk. It is so good in this salad!
- Parsley– For best flavor, select Italian flat leaf parsley. Not only is is pretty but it adds a nice earthy herbal flavor to the dish.
- Chicken– This can be cooked on the grill or in a pan. Alternatively, precooked shredded chicken like rotisserie chicken can be used.
- Dressing– The dressing is a simple homemade red wine vinaigrette with a few seasonings. Feel free to swap it out for a store-bought dressing for ease.
How to make Greek Couscous Chicken Salad:
Time needed: 40 minutes.
- Cook the Couscous
Combine couscous, water, and seasonings together in a 2 quart pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and add lid, leaving it open a crack. Cook 10-12 minutes, stirring halfway through. Fluff with fork and let cool.
- Cook the Chicken
Meanwhile, season chicken with salt and pepper. Cook at med-high heat on a grill or in a skillet (cast iron works great!) for 6-7 minutes per side or until an internal temperature of 165 degrees F. Cool and slice into bite size pieces.
- Make the Dressing
Place all dressing ingredients together in a jar and shake well to combine. Chill until ready to use.
In a large mixing bowl, combine cucumber, tomatoes, chickpeas, Kalamata olives, red onion, feta, parsley, couscous, and chicken. Toss together. Add dressing and mix when ready to enjoy.
Once the couscous and chicken are cooled, toss together with the vegetables, chickpeas, olives, cheese, and parsley. Divide among containers. Divide the dressing among small covered containers and place in with the salad. Refrigerate until ready to eat. Shake the dressing and pour over salad just before eating.
This is a small round shaped pasta made of wheat (or semolina) flour and water. They are bigger than regular couscous and have a soft, chewy texture. It is toasted giving it a savory nutty flavor.
If you can’t eat wheat, substitute the pearl couscous with barley or brown rice. Other raw vegetables like bell peppers would be great in this salad too.
According to food safety guidelines, the FDA suggests refrigerated food be consumed within 4 days. As long as the dressing is kept separate, the salad will stay good for up to 4 days.
TOOLS USED TO MAKE THIS COUSCOUS SALAD:
- Pyrex Mixing Bowls with Lids– I love my mixing bowls with lids because then I am able to stack things up with the fridge. Plus, glass is nice for when I need to microwave whatever is in it.
- Cast Iron Skillet– A cast iron skillet is a kitchen must have. It heats evenly and gives meats a nice crust.
- Meal Prep Containers– I’ve been using these meal prep containers for the last 2 months for my husband’s lunch and they have worked beautifully. They are leak proof, my husband can easily open them, they can go in the microwave, and I can wash them in the dishwasher. Oh, and they don’t get gross stains since it’s glass.
- Reusable Salad Dressing Containers– These screw top containers are great for holding dressing or dip.
LOOKING FOR MORE FILLING SALADS? CHECK OUT THESE:
- Kale Salad with Roasted Vegetables
- Cafe Rio Sweet Pork Salad
- Thai Peanut Chicken Salad
- Apple & Bacon Spinach Salad
- Tuna Chopped Salad
Greek Chicken Couscous Salad
For the Couscous:
- 1 1/2 cups Israeli pearl couscous
- 2 1/4 cups water
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons Italian Seasoning
For the Chicken:
- 1 pound chicken breasts
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
For the Dressing:
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
For the Salad:
- 1 1/2 cups english cucumber, diced
- 1 1/2 cups grape tomatoes, halved
- 1 15 ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 3/4 cup kalamata olives, pitted
- 2/3 cup red onion
- 1/2 cup feta cheese
- 3 tablespoons fresh flat leaf parsley
For the Couscous:
- Combine 1 1/2 c. couscous, 2 1/4 c. water, 1/2 tsp. garlic powder, 1/2 tsp. onion powder, 3/4 tsp salt, and 2 tsp. Italian seasoning in a 2 quart sauce pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and add lid, leaving it open a crack. Cook 10-12 minutes, stirring halfway through. Fluff with fork, transfer to a large mixing bowl and place in fridge to cool.
For the Chicken:
- Meanwhile, season 1 lb. chicken with salt and pepper. Cook at med-high heat on a grill or in a skillet (cast iron works great!) with a little oil for 6-7 minutes per side or until an internal temperature of 165 degrees F. Transfer chicken to a plate and cool (in the fridge). Slice into bite size pieces.
For the Dressing:
- Place 1/3 c. olive oil, 1/4 c. red wine vinegar, 1 T. lemon juice, 1 tsp Dijon mustard, 1 tsp. oregano, 1/2 tsp. salt, 1/4 tsp. garlic powder, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a jar. Shake well to combine. Chill until ready to use.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine 1.5 c. cucumber, 1.5 c. tomatoes, 1 can chickpeas, 3/4 c. Kalamata olives, 2/3 c. red onion, 1/2 c. feta, 3 Tbsp. parsley, couscous, and chicken. Toss together. Mix in the dressing when ready to enjoy. *If meal prepping, divide salad among containers and divide dressing into small cups with lids. Refrigerate until ready to eat. Shake dressing and pour over salad before eating.