This couscous salad with cherry tomatoes and mozzarella is a colorful, easy, spring salad. A mixture of baby spring greens are tossed with nutty whole wheat couscous. Next, sweet cherry tomatoes, creamy mozzarella, salty olives and toasted pine nuts are casually tossed over the salad and then drizzled with a robust balsamic dressing. This is an ideal salad to celebrate the arrival of spring.
I like to add grains to salads to make them more substantial. Couscous is one of the easiest to add since it only takes minutes to make. Once the couscous is cooked, let it cool slightly. Then toss it with the spring mixed greens and half the balsamic dressing. This is the base of your salad. For a pretty, colorful presentation, scatter the cherry tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, olives, pine nuts and a little red onion over the top of the couscous and salad mixture and drizzle with the remaining dressing.
This would be a great salad for Easter lunch or a spring gathering. It’s colorful, flavorful and easy to prep ahead of time. Just chop all the veggies and cheese and make the dressing. Refrigerate the prepped ingredients until ready to assemble the salad. Then right before serving, cook the couscous and prepare the salad as per the directions below.
I hope spring has sprung where ever you live and your days are getting warmer, the snow is finally melting away and spring flowers are starting to bloom. The flowers in my neighborhood – especially roses – have been stunning this year. A sudden explosion of pink, coral, red, yellow and white.
A couple of notes:
Give your greens a rough chop before adding them to the serving bowl. This will make them much easier to serve and eat.
Definitely use fresh mozzarella in this salad. Fresh mozzarella is creamy and softer than regular mozzarella.
Toasted pine nuts make all the difference in this salad. Just be careful when toasting pine nuts – they can burn very quickly. It only takes a minute or two to brown them by toasting them in a skillet over medium heat. Make sure to shake the pan continuously. Or you can just cheat like I did and buy already toasted pine nuts – I found mine at Trader Joe’s.
|Couscous Salad with Cherry Tomatoes and Mozzarella|| |
- 1 - 5 oz bag of mixed spring greens
- ½ cup of dry whole wheat couscous - cooked as per package instructions - should yield about 1 cup of cooked couscous.
- 1 cup of cherry tomatoes - sliced in half.
- 12 to 14 kalamati olives - roughly chopped
- ¾ cup of fresh mozzarella - I used Trader Joe's ciliegine mozzarella balls - sliced in half or thirds.
- ¼ cup toasted pine nuts.
- 2 tbs red onion - minced
- 6 tbs olive oil
- 2 tbs balsamic vinegar
- 1 small squeeze of honey - about 1 tsp
- ½ tsp dijon mustard - I used Grey Poupon country dijon mustard
- 8 twists of black pepper
- A pinch of salt
- Cook couscous as per package instructions. Let cool slightly.
- Rinse, dry and roughly chop lettuce and add to a large serving bowl.
- Chop cherry tomatoes, mozzarella, olives, red onion and set aside.
- Toast pine nuts in a frying pan over medium heat until pine nuts are golden. Keep shaking, moving the pan otherwise the pine nuts will burn.
- Make dressing by combining all ingredients and whisking.
- Add couscous to lettuce in large serving bowl. Toss with half the dressing.
- Sprinkle cherry tomatoes, mozzarella, olives, red onion and pine nuts over the couscous and lettuce. Drizzle with the remaining dressing and serve.
Thanks for stopping by and I hope you enjoy the recipe. You can find me on instagram and pinterest too.