This Mediterranean Couscous Salad is a light and fresh salad packed with the flavours of the med! Couscous is combined with creamy feta cheese, crisp cucumber, salty kalamata olives, juicy tomatoes and plenty of fresh herbs.
I love using couscous in salads, whether it's my Moroccan Couscous Salad or this couscous salad, they always go down a treat. I make this salad a lot over the summer and it's a little bit of a lifesaver. It is so easy and quick to make. For such a simple salad bursting with flavour it has to be right up the as one of my all-time favorite salads.
Perfect as a main dish or a really great side dish, this salad is the most requested lunch in my house every summer. It's perfect on a hot summer day when you don't want to cook. And is a great way to get more veggies into your kid's diet.
🛒 What You'll Need
- Couscous - I use regular couscous but you could also use pearl couscous if you like.
- Onion - red onion is best but you could also use spring onion if you prefer.
- Tomatoes - Fresh tomatoes are best for this salad, I use cherry tomatoes or baby plum tomatoes. The smaller tomatoes are best as you can cut them into small pieces.
- More fresh vegetables - I add chopped cucumber and chopped raw courgette.
- Herbs - You will need fresh mint, flat-leaf parsley and fresh basil for this dish.
- Cheese - I add feta cheese to this couscous salad but other cheeses will work too. Goat's cheese would work really well.
- Olives - Kalamata olives are perfect in this salad but if you can't find them then black olives will work too.
- Other ingredients - you will also need fresh lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, garlic, hot water, vegetable stock, salt and black pepper.
🔪 How To Make It
Please see the recipe card below for full instructions and the full ingredient list.
1. Make a stock using freshly boiled water and a stock cube. Add the dry couscous to a large bowl. Pour the stock over the couscous then cover with cling film and leave to soak for 10 minutes.
2. Once the couscous has soaked up all the stock fluff it up with a fork. Next add the chopped herbs, garlic and lemon juice.
3. Next, add the chopped cucumber, chopped red onion and courgette. Toss everything together.
4. Finally, add the feta, tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper and toss again. Transfer the couscous salad to a large serving bowl for serving.
👩🍳 Top Tip
- This Mediterranean couscous salad recipe can be made a day ahead if you want. In fact, the good news is that this salad tastes even better the next day as all the flavours will have had more time to meld into each other
This salad can be kept for about two days. Make sure to keep it in an airtight container and keep it in the fridge.
Yes, you can. You can also use whole wheat couscous if you like.
Fresh herbs really are best for this dish.
- Make it vegan - you can easily make this dish vegan, just omit the cheese and swap it for chickpeas (garbanzo beans) or other white beans such as cannellini beans. Toasted pine nuts are also really great in this salad.
- Add more fresh veggies - this dish is so versatile, you can easily add more veggies to it. Slices of red bell peppers work really well as do quartered artichoke hearts.
- Swap the herbs - If you're not a fan of the herbs I have used you can easily swap them for your favourite herbs. Fresh oregano will work really well as does fresh coriander (cilantro).
🍽 More Pasta Salad Recipes
- Orzo Pasta Salad - This tasty pasta salad is perfect any time of the year! It comes with creamy feta with juicy cherry tomatoes, salty kalamata olives with orzo, and a very quick lemon and pesto dressing.
- Broccoli Pasta Salad - This pasta salad is propper tasty, filling, and healthy. It's so easy to make and is perfect for bringing to potlucks, and BBQs and for filling school lunch boxes!
- Caprese Pasta Salad - Summery and fresh this pasta salad is great for lunches or dinner and it's easy in just 20 minutes.
🥗 Delicious Salad Recipes
Mediterranean Couscous Salad
- 250 g / 1½ cups couscous dry weight
- 325 ml / 1⅓ cups of freshly boiled water
- 1 level tsp vegetable bouillon or half a vegetable stock cube
- 50 ml / ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ½ small red onion (50g) finely chopped
- 1 small courgette (100g) chopped
- 200 g cherry tomatoes cut in half or quartered
- 10 pitted kalamata olives cut in half
- 100 g feta cheese cut into cubes
- 2 heaped tbsp chopped basil leaves
- 1 tablespoon chopped flat-leaf parsley
- 1 heaped tsp chopped mint leaves
- 1 large lemon, the juice of
- 2 cloves of garlic minced or put through a garlic press
- ¼ teaspoon cracked black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- Make the stock then add the dry couscous to a large bowl.Add the stock, stir once then cover the bowl with cling film. Leave for 10 minutes or until the couscous has absorbed all the liquid. Use a fork to fluff up the couscous, then leave to cool.
- Once the couscous has cooled add the chopped herbs and lemon juice. Stir well.Next add the chopped vegetables and toss them into the couscous.
- Finally, add the feta, olives, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper and mix everything together. Transfer to a large serving bowl and serve immediately.
- Storage - Once made you can store this salad in an airtight container and keep it in the fridge. Use within two days. This recipe is not suitable for freezing.
- Make Ahead - You can make this salad the day before if you like. To save time you could prepare the couscous the night before, just transfer it to an airtight container and keep it in the fridge.
- Nutritional Information - All nutritional information shared is an estimate based on third-party calculations. If calorie count and/or nutritional values are important to you, we recommend putting the ingredients through whichever online nutritional calculator you prefer. Calories can vary depending on which brands were used. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.
- Weights and measurements - For US readers, I use Cuisipro measuring cups and spoons, and a Pyrex measuring jug for liquids. These are the industry standard. Cup/spoon volumes can differ from brand to brand, for accuracy, I recommend weighing all ingredients if possible for the best results.
First published August 2017. Updated August 2023 with new photos and more information.