Chicken Skewers with Orzo Pasta Salad

  • recipe photo
  • These chicken skewers are healthy and light, and they can easily be cooked ahead of time. The orzo salad is simple to make for a crowd and a delicious complement to the chicken.

The best party food is simple to serve as well as easy for guests to eat while they mingle.

Ingredients - Chicken Skewers

  • 24 small wood or metal skewers (4–6" is best)
  • 1 1/2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bunch fresh mint
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  • 1 red onion, cut into 1" square pieces


  • If using wood skewers, soak them in water for 30 minutes before using.

  • Cut the chicken into 1" pieces and mix with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, garlic, 1 tablespoon of chopped mint, salt, and pepper in a mixing bowl. Let the chicken marinate for at least 30 minutes or up to 4 hours. Whisk the remaining olive oil and lemon juice in a small bowl to blend and set aside.

  • Pull off the large mint leaves from their stems. Keep the smaller ones for garnish. To assemble the skewers, alternate pieces of chicken, onion, and mint leaves, leaving an inch of open space at the ends of each skewer. Sprinkle the skewers with salt and pepper. The skewers can be assembled and refrigerated up to 4 hours ahead of grilling them.

  • Prepare the grill for cooking over medium-high heat or preheat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Lightly oil the grill with vegetable oil. Place the skewers on the grill, and cook until the chicken is just cooked through, turning and basting from time to time with the oil-lemon mixture, about 5-6 minutes total. Serve immediately.

Ingredients - Orzo Pasta Salad

  • 1 lb. orzo pasta
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 3 tbsp. lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted
  • 6 oz. pasteurized feta or goat cheese, crumbled
  • 1/2 cup sliced green onions
  • 3 tbsp. finely chopped mint
  • 3 tbsp. currants


  • Prepare the pasta according to the instructions on the box, making sure to use well-salted water. Drain it in a colander.

  • While the orzo is cooking, whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper in a large bowl. Add the drained orzo to the bowl. Toss to combine. Allow it to cool, then stir in the pine nuts, cheese, green onions, mint and currants. (If you have mint left over from making chicken skewers, add that too!) Taste and season with additional salt and pepper if necessary.

Serves 12

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