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This Grilled Lemon Herb Chicken Avocado Orzo Salad with Honey Mustard Bacon Dressing is the perfect summer dinner salad. It’s almost no-cook and comes together quickly and easily. Grilled chicken tossed with a lemony herb honey mustard dressing, orzo pasta, cheddar cheese cubes, crispy bacon, and creamy avocado. It’s colorful and so delicious. Enjoy this for dinner and save the leftovers for lunch. Warm or cold, it’s always good. Or serve this up at your next backyard dinner with friends.

It’s a Monday salad, but an exciting Monday salad because it’s certainly not just greens and vegetables…there’s so much more! I love this one.

First of all, happy Monday guys. Hope everyone had a great weekend and is slowly slipping into the laid-back, chill, summertime mindset. It’s all about the easy-going life for the next three or so months, right? That’s kind of my thinking and I’m really embracing it when it comes to our weekly dinners.

I know most of us want to be out enjoying these summer days and not spending hours in the kitchen. So as I said last week, simple is the name of the game…all summer long.

I have what seems like hundreds of orzo recipes on HBH, so it’s really no secret that I love using orzo. Technically, it’s pasta, but it’s shaped like small rice, so I love tossing it into salads. It makes for super quick one-pot pasta dishes or even carbonara.

It really is so versatile, and one of my favorites ingredients to use in the summertime because of how quickly it cooks up.

Shockingly, I have not shared an orzo salad with you guys. So when I had this idea, I jumped right in and created it. It ended up being the perfect, quick-to-throw-together summer dinner…and you guys, it really is good and for so many reasons…

The lemon herb honey mustard dressing, the grilled chicken, orzo, bacon, creamy avocado, melty cubes of cheddar cheese, and fresh herbs. And when put all together, such a GOOD combination.

Here are the details…start with the dressing

The dressing is where you want to start. I was so into the dressing I made for those burrata vegetable sandwiches I shared the other week that I used the same dressing here. Only I added fresh herbs, rosemary, thyme, and basil, and a shallot too.

The dressing is the heart of this recipe. As the chicken grills in it and then the hot orzo gets tossed up with it too.

It’s a little herby, spicy, sweet, and tangy…all the things we really love.

Grill up that chicken and toss the orzo

Once you toss the chicken in the dressing, throw it on the grill. While the chicken is grilling, I boil off the orzo and then toss it with the chicken.

Now, this next step is key. I like to toss the hot orzo with the cubes of cheese and the dressing. The heat from the pasta turns the cheese melty and helps the dressing really soak into the pasta and infuse it with flavor.

Now finish it up

When you have the chicken grilled and the orzo tossed, add everything else, then top with the avocado and more fresh herbs.

You can enjoy this warm or cold, though I LOVE this warm with those melty chunks of cheddar cheese.

Totally and completely delicious. But simple to make!

I know I say this just about every day, but this recipe really is good.

It’s one of those recipes that you’ll crave time and time again. Plus the sauce just kind of melts in your mouth. YUM!

Looking for other quick dinners? Here are some favorites:

Pesto Chicken Caesar Salad with Tomatoes and Burrata

Lemon Parmesan Salmon with Corn, Tomato, and Avocado Salad

Tropical Jerk Grilled Chicken with Charred Mango Salsa Verde

Lastly, if you make this Grilled Lemon Herb Chicken Avocado Orzo Salad, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!

Grilled Lemon Herb Chicken Avocado Orzo Salad with Honey Mustard Bacon Dressing

Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories Per Serving: 498 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

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Ingredients

Dressing

Salad

Instructions

  • 1. To make the dressing. Combine all ingredients in a glass jar and whisk until smooth. Taste and adjust the salt and pepper.
    2. In a large bowl, toss the chicken with 1/3 of the dressing. Let sit 10 minutes. Set your grill, grill pan, or skillet to medium-high heat. Grill the chicken until lightly charred and cooked through, turning halfway through cooking, about 10 to 12 minutes. During the same time, grill the bell pepper, until lightly charred, then chop.
    3. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Boil the orzo to al dente, according to package directions. Drain. Add the hot orzo, cheddar cheese, blue cheese, and 1/3 of the dressing, toss to combine. Add the chicken, grilled peppers, lettuce, tomatoes, and bacon, tossing to combine.
    4. Top the pasta with avocado. Season with freshly cracked pepper and salt. Serve warm or cold.
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Comments

  1. I have difficult time finding white balsamic vinegar. What would be a good substitute?

    Thanks
    Sue M

    1. Hey Sue,
      How about using white or red vinegar in this recipe? That should work well for you! I hope you love it! xTieghan

  2. 5 stars
    I just made this recipe and it was delicious. I already had a rotisserie chicken, so I used that, but marinaded it in some dressing while preparing the rest of the recipe. Because I knew that I would have leftovers, I served the pasta on a bed of the lettuce instead of mixing it in. I will definitely make again soon.

    1. Hey Michelle,
      Happy Friday!! I love to hear that this recipe was a hit, thanks so much for making it! xTieghan

  3. I have not made the recipe yet, but it looks super tasty. Unfortunately my boyfriend is allergic to honey though, what would be a good substitute for honey?

    Thanks!

    1. Hey Allison,
      You could use agave in place of the honey. Please let me know if you give the recipe a try, I hope you love it! xxTieghan

  4. 5 stars
    Very tasty! Made with chicken thighs- which are always more delish 🙂
    Next time I will use Arugula in lieu of the red lettuce- I bet the Peppery-ness of the arugula would be amazing with the bacon and avocado!

    1. Hey Kristen,
      I love to hear that this recipe was enjoyed, thanks so much for making it!!☀️ xTieghan

  5. Hello! We have had this and wow did we love it! Quick question tho, it says 1/3 dressing on the chicken and 1/3 on the salad. What do you do with the other 1/3? I added to the salad and worked well but was that right?

    1. Hey Ann,
      Happy Friday!! I love to hear that this recipe was a winner, thanks a lot for trying it out! The remaining dressing can be used to add more to the salad as you like:) ☀️xx

    1. Hey Eboni,
      Wonderful!! I love to hear that this recipe was enjoyed, thanks so much for making it. Have the best week:) xx

  6. This was just perfect! I forgot to defrost what I had planned for dinner and this recipe popped up in my search. I had everything I needed to make this. Serendipity! I’m your “neighbor “ in Granby and am excited to try more of your recipes. This was a huge hit!

    1. Hi Jeanne,
      Wonderful!! Thanks a lot for giving this recipe a try, I love to hear that it was a winner! xTieghan

  7. 5 stars
    This was absolutely phenomenal. I wasn’t sure my husband would like the honey mustard dressing, so I didn’t tell him it what it was and he ate a quarter of it out of the serving bowl before I even had a chance to add the bacon 🙂

    1. Hey Margaret,
      You could use GF orzo or another short cut GF pasta. I hope this recipe turns out amazing for you, please let me know if you give it a try! xTieghan

  8. 5 stars
    This is the best salad I have ever had, I’m not exaggerating. It’s just as good as the salads I’ve had in restaurants if not better. 5 stars!

    1. Hi Rachel,
      Wonderful!! Love to hear that this recipe was a hit, thanks a lot for giving it a go:) xTieghan

  9. 5 stars
    We make this weekly. So unbelievably good. And it’s the salad-hating men in my life that request it so much. Big hit! Is this part of one of your cookbooks? If so, I need that specific cookbook!

  10. DELICIOUS!!! This was so simple but packed with flavor. We are obsessed with orzo right now so I was excited to add it to the salad! After we finished my husband said “I literally love every single thing about this”. I think we will be making again very soon!

    1. Hey Taylor,
      Awesome!! Thanks a lot for making this recipe, I love to hear that it was a hit. Have the best week:) xx

  11. 5 stars
    I love all the flavors. So yummy and filling.

    I tried to make it on my George Forman because it was winter time and I was craving this recipe. It came out pretty good! Just took a little longer since all the chicken and the bell pepper couldn’t fit on it at once.

    Only negative is that is look me a long time to prepare the herbs. Any ideas for quick fresh herb chopping?

    1. Hey Anna,
      Awesome!! Love to hear this recipe was a winner, thanks for making it. Sorry, I don’t have a secret for that! Have the best week:) xT

  12. 5 stars
    It’s a five star in our house – perfect for an Aussie summer evening! Husband wants all the leftovers to himself (not happening 😆) Our 5 year old loves “the recipe lady’s” videos and gobbled this up (we’ll work on her sisters 😏) Thanks for a recipe that tastes delicious, even when we have to slightly modify based on what we have in the house.

    1. Hi there,
      I really appreciate you giving the recipe a try, so glad to hear that it was enjoyed! Have a great week! xxT