Need a quick lunch option? Summer BBQ potluck dish to share? Are you tired of potato salads? Try making a Healthy Banza Rice Greek Salad recipe! It is a protein-packed salad that screams summer! It has all the Greek flavors you love with no gluten and no FODMAPs.
The Banza rice acts and looks like orzo pasta, but it is gluten-free and has 11 grams of protein a serving. The rice texture plays well with the dressing, chopped-up cucumbers, grape tomatoes, and kalamata olives. The Greek dressing pulls everything together and makes it a cohesive dish with delicious flavors. This healthy Banza rice Greek salad recipe will quickly become one of your favorite recipes!
- Banza Chickpea Rice - Using chickpea rice in place of orzo pasta makes this salad gluten-free and adds additional protein.
- Recipe for Greek Dressing - A great homemade option for the dressing.
- Kalamata Olives - I love olives and kalamata olives are the perfect match with Greek flavors.
- Grape Tomatoes - These little tomatoes add just the right amount of sweetness.
- Pepperconini’s - A bit of spice to balance the sweet tomatoes.
- Feta Cheese - Buying feta cheese in a block gives the feta cheese more moisture.
- English Cucumbers - Using an English cucumber means you do not need to peel it or deal with all the seeds. However, a traditional cucumber will also work.
- Lemon Juice - Optional, but adds great brightness to the salad.
- Fresh Parsley - Optional, but adds a fresh herb flavor.
See the recipe card for the exact measurements and complete instructions. Selected ingredients are based on current serving sizes measured by the Monash FODMAP App at the time of publishing. As always, follow your gut and modify as needed.Jump to Recipe
Chop the cucumber, kalamata olives, and grape tomatoes.
Crumble your feta cheese into small pieces.
Make the Greek Dressing and set it aside.
In a medium saucepan, add water and set to a boil. Once boiling, add the chickpea rice and a teaspoon of Kosher salt.
Once done cooking, drain the rice in a fine mesh strainer. Rinse with cool water to stop the cooking process. If the rice is sticking, drizzle some olive oil over the rice.
Add the rice, olives, tomatoes, cucumbers, pepperoncinis, and crumbled feta in a large bowl. Drizzle the Greek dressing over it all and mix. If you want, pour some fresh lemon juice and sprinkle some chopped parsley.
Allow the Banza rice Greek salad to cool in the refrigerator for at least an hour before serving. It will help the flavors to meld together.
Healthy Banza Rice Greek Salad Recipe
Greek Dressing Ingredients:
- ¼ cup avocado oil
- 1 Tablespoon infused garlic oil without garlic pieces
- 3 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
- ¼ teaspoon Kosher salt
- Fresh Ground Pepper
Greek Salad Ingredients:
- 8 oz Banza chickpea rice
- ⅓ cup kalamata olives Chopped
- ½ cup grape tomatoes Chopped
- 4 whole pepperoncini’s Chopped
- 8 oz whole feta cheese Crumbled
- 1 cup English cucumbers Chopped
- 1 Tablespoons lemon juice
- Make the Greek dressing and set aside.
- In a medium saucepan, add four cups of water and set to boil. Once boiling, add the Banza chickpea rice. Cook for four minutes. Drain with a fine mesh strainer. Rinse with cool water. Place the cooked chickpea rice in a large bowl. If the rice is sticking, drizzle some olive oil and stir.
- Chop up kalamata olives, grape tomatoes, pepperoncini, and cucumbers.
- Crumble the block of feta cheese into small pieces.
- Add the chopped veggies to the bowl of rice. Then pour the Greek dressing over it all. Gently stir until all the ingredients are coated in the dressing.
- Allow the salad to chill in the refrigerator in an airtight container. The salad will last up to four days.
- Add Diced Chicken - Want to make this a complete, easy summer meal? Add some leftover yogurt-marinated Greek chicken. It will add some additional protein too!
- Greek Dressing Options - Instead of the Greek dressing, use a creamier option like homemade tzatziki salad dressing.
- Additional Veggies - Chop up a red pepper and add it to the chopped veggie mix.
- Rice Bowl - Create individual rice bowls. Allowing everyone to customize their Greek salad, similar to grain bowls.
- Banza Pasta - Instead of Banza's chickpea rice, replace it with Banza chickpea pasta.
Cooking Banza Rice
Learn from my mistake and make sure you only rinse the chickpea rice AFTER cooking. It is not like normal rice. Whoopsie. As you can just about guess, all the chickpea rice “grains” stuck together and formed large clumps. At first, I thought boiling the rice would release the clumps, and nope, that didn’t work either. Then I thought perhaps if I whisked the boiling rinsed chickpea rice and nope, that made it foam even more than normal. It just wasn’t good.
Learn how to cook the chickpea rice correctly. First, follow the cooking instructions on the Banza rice bag. Bring the water to a boil in a medium saucepan, and then add the chickpea rice straight into the simmering water. Do not rinse, do not whisk. Just dump the rice in the boiling water and gently stir. The chickpea rice will foam a bit. Some foam is normal. After four minutes, drain the rice with a fine mesh strainer. Then you rinse the chickpea rise with water AFTER you have cooked it.
Technically, no. However, before you opt out of adding sea salt to the boiling water, know that adding salt to the water adds flavor to your chickpea rice, which is important for building flavors.
It isn’t as chewy as plain rice. The grains are larger than white rice and not as chewy. The taste is very neutral and a perfect blank slate to add and build flavors as the starting point. It is a nutritious alternative with fewer net carbs than brown rice or regular rice and is an excellent option for anyone's dietary needs.
Chickpeas have oligosaccharides, sometimes referred to as Oligos. They are the O of the FODMAP acronym. According to the Monash App, eating 1 cup of cooked chickpeas is safe. As always, listen to your body. Adjust and modify as needed as you work through your tolerance levels.
This Greek salad should be stored in an airtight container for four days. Banza rice will lose its texture. I recommend not freezing this salad. Vegetables will turn to mush when defrosted.
This Greek salad makes a great protein-packed lunch option. Skip the sandwich and add a small container of this salad to your lunch. Serve it as a side dish alongside grilled Greek chicken. Serving grilled pitas with this salad would be a great addition if you can tolerate gluten.