Mediterranean Couscous Salad

Do you Couscous?

Couscous is one of my favorite pastas, and I love the way it takes up flavor!  This Mediterranean Couscous salad is packed full of flavor and delicious morsels of flavor, so I make it quite often.  For this recipe, I add in cranberries, cucumbers, walnuts, peppers and cilantro, but the beauty is it is infinitely customizable.  Ok, so not 100% Mediterranean.   But it’s delicious!

This salad can be served either cold or “just made” warm.  I actually prefer it made ahead of time and refrigerated, which allows the flavors to meld.  I’m always trying to make dinner a bit easier to accomplish, so getting a component done ahead of time is always appreciated.

Types of Couscous

I usually prefer the larger Israeli or Pearl type couscous.  For me, it just seems to have a nicer texture.  However, to each their own, so feel free to use whichever type you would like!

The Dressing

I’m a big believer in making your own dressings, especially vinaigrettes.  This one is so easy, that you’ll learn that there’s no reason to buy the store-bought ones again!  However, if you’re in a rush, just substitute in an Italian dressing and you’ll be good to go.

Anyway, here’s the recipe!  Enjoy!

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Mediterranean Couscous Salad



For the Dressing

  • 1/4 cup olive oil (extra virgin)
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 tbs champagne vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 TBS honey
  • 1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper (or to taste)
  • 1 tsp fresh basil (optional)

For the Salad

  • 1.5 cups Israeli Couscous
  • 1.5 cups low sodium chicken stock
  • 2 TBS onion, diced
  • 1 TBS minced garlic
  • 1/2 TBS butter ((Banner Butter Roasted Garlic))
  • 1.5 cups chopped cucumber (seedless preferred)
  • 1 cup toasted walnut pieces
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 red bell pepper (diced)
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 2 TBS chopped green onions


  1. Whisk all vinaigrette ingredients together EXCEPT olive oil. While whisking briskly, slowly drizzle in olive oil. Set aside
  2. In a small stockpot over medium heat, melt butter then sautée onions and garlic until fragrant. Add in couscous and cook until couscous starts to brown, about a minute.
  3. Add in chicken stock, then cover and reduce heat slightly. Cook for 10 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Test couscous to ensure properly cooked. Fluff with a fork and allow to cool.
  4. Drizzle in vinaigrette, then toss in cucumber, walnuts, cranberries, red bell peppers and cilantro. May be served immediately or refrigerated for later service.