Chicken, Orzo & Pomegranate Salad

My kids are mad for pomegranate seeds. Kenya and Chloe will sit and eat spoonful after spoonful of this vitamin and antioxidant rich fruit until they're blue in the face. The first time Kenya tried pomegranate seeds he was just over a year old and my husband and I watched intently as his little fingers eagerly picked up the ruby red seeds one by one and guided them into his mouth, staining both his digits and lips in the process a bright red. Four years later Kenya, still loves pomegranate seeds and would eat them at every meal if given the opportunity. Chloe is no different, she actually had a full on tantrum once when she spotted a bowl of them in our fridge that I was saving for later.

The sweet seeds add great texture and flavor to all sorts of recipes. As you know, I adore "one-pot dishes" for their ease and convenience they offer busy moms and this Chicken, Orzo & Pomegranate Salad is no exception. This dish can be served at lunch or dinner but looks special no matter when you serve it, the bright flecks of crimson pomegranate punctuating each bite. Healthy and light, it's great to keep in the fridge for a night you have no time to prepare dinner or when guests pop by for an unexpected visit!

[amd-recipeseo-recipe:20]

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Chicken, Orzo & Pomegranate Salad (Serves 4-6)

Prep Time: 45 mins Cook Time: 0 mins

egg free

nut free

dairy free

Ingredients

  • 1 Lb Chicken Breast, bone-in*
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3 Tsp kosher salt
  • 2 Sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 4 Garlic cloves
  • 1 Small Onion, diced
  • 4 Cups water
  • 1 16 ounce box orzo
  • 1 Cup or seeds of 1 pomegranate
  • 1/4 Cup fresh cilantro, mint OR basil, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp Sherry Vinegar
  • 1 Tsp kosher salt

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 400 F.
2. Place chicken breast on a foil-covered baking sheet, bone side down.
3. Drizzle 1 tbsp of olive oil, 1 tsp of salt , 1 rosemary sprig and 2 sliced garlic cloves on each breast.
4. Roast for 45 minutes or until the internal temperature is at 160-165.
5. Allow the chicken to rest for 15 minutes then shred into pieces. Top chicken with remaining juices for added flavor.
6. Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a medium size pot over medium heat and sauté onions for 4 minutes.
7. Add the water and 1 tsp salt and bring to a boil.
8. Add the orzo, cover and cook according to package directions over medium-high heat stirring occasionally to prevent orzo from sticking to the pot.
9. Strain any excess water and pour orzo into a bowl.
10. Add the pomegranate seeds, mint, and shredded chicken.
11. In a small bowl, mix together the olive oil, sherry vinegar, and salt. Toss to combine with the salad.
12. Chill and serve.
*You can also use store bough rotisserie chicken, shred into bite size pieces and skip directly to step #6
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Hi, I’m Catherine. Mama of three. A Kentucky girl living in California. Here’s what I know: all kids can be great eaters and mealtime must be easy. My passion is creating simple, healthy recipes that can be enjoyed by the whole family.

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17 comments

  • Bbq Smoker Site

    Great recipe! We caught a cooking show episode yesterday where pomegranate seeds were used as part of a super antioxidant fruit salad! Yummo!

    leave a comment

  • Hilywatson

    That Yummy one as I like chicken and pomegranate lot but never tried together..

    Thanks for this new delicious combination.

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  • Heather Taylor Kids In The Sink

    My little one really loved pomegranates last year and I totally forgot about them this year until I read this post. Thanks for the reminder and the yummy recipe!

    leave a comment

  • Maurine

    I just made something similar with quinoa, dried cranberries, chopped apples, left over chicken, and cinnamon. This is going to be next on the list!

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  • Kelly

    Our entire family loved this recipe... from the 10 month old to the 37 year old. Thank you for posting recipes that we can all enjoy together! It was a stress-free dinner at our house tonight.

    leave a comment

  • Fishwipp

    looks like i'll be making this recipe with a twist! we only have pomegranate juice and pomegranate craisins on island! :)

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  • This looks great ! One questions...opened my first ever pomegranate today. The seeds are yummy but have that hard center and worried about giving them to my kids. Is this hard center normal? Am I better off buying packaged ones? Thanks for your help!

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  • Lindsey

    I was confused about the seeds as well. Do you eat the whole thing? My husband and I would spit out the seeds cus we were not sure if we were suppose to swallow the whole thing ;)

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  • Paula

    Hi, I have the same question about the pomegranate seeds as well. Are they supposed to have the hard seeds in the center and is it safe to swallow even for a 1-year-old? They don't seem smooth enough...Please advise. Thanks and we love your recipes!

    leave a comment

  • Treasured « Pretty And Delectable

    [...] ~ fresh pomegranates to make one of my favorite salads [...]

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  • Amy

    Would this recipe work if I substituted quinoa or brown rice for the orzo? Any thoughts?
    I love this website!

    leave a comment

    • Catherine

      Hmm I think quinoa would be great!

      leave a comment

  • Healthy School Holiday Party: Natural Red & Green Food Celebration

    [...] Chicken, pome­gran­ate & orzo salad If you don’t make this for your school party, it could make a tasty dish for home. I plan on try­ing it with whole wheat orzo. [...]

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  • Angela C.

    This was so yummy, but my kids didn't like the vinegar. Luckily I left some shredded chicken on the side. I cooked up some more orzo and tossed with cranberries and olive oil for them. They ate it up! The chicken came out great and my 3 year old wouldn't stop picking on it as I was shredding. She loved it and just admitted that she took some off of the counter when I went to the bathroom. Sneak! :)

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    • Angela C.

      Forgot to mention that I replaced the pomegranate seeds with cranberries. Was afraid my younger one wouldn't be able to chew them properly. Cranberries worked great!

      leave a comment

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