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Greek-Style Picnic Salad

Greek-Style Picnic Salad RecipeBecky Luigart-Stayner


  • 2 cups uncooked white rice
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 3/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, packed without oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 8 cups bagged prewashed spinach (about 8 ounces)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) reduced-fat feta cheese, crumbled
  • 1/4 cup chopped pitted kalamata olives
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (15 1/2-ounce) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed and drained
  • 3 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
  • 10 lemon wedges (optional)


Cook rice according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Cool to room temperature; set aside.

Combine boiling water and sun-dried tomatoes in a bowl; let stand 30 minutes or until soft. Drain and cut into 1-inch pieces.

Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add spinach and garlic; sauté 3 minutes or until spinach wilts. Combine rice, tomatoes, spinach mixture, cheese, and next 5 ingredients (through chickpeas). Drizzle with remaining 1 tablespoon oil; toss gently to coat. Sprinkle with nuts; serve with lemon wedges, if desired.


    For authentic Greek flavor, substitute two teaspoons chopped fresh oregano for dried.

  • Yield: 10 servings (serving size: 1 cup)

Nutritional Information

Calories per serving:288
Calories from fat:30%
Fat per serving:9.5g
Saturated fat per serving:2.6g
Monounsaturated fat per serving:3.6g
Polyunsaturated fat per serving:1.7g
Protein per serving:10.3g
Carbohydrates per serving:41.8g
Fiber per serving:4g
Cholesterol per serving:8mg
Iron per serving:3.4mg
Sodium per serving:713mg
Calcium per serving:110mg

Good to Know

The combination of beans, like garbanzo beans, and rice, preferably whole grain rice, is a complete source of protein and fiber. Protein is crucial for muscle repair, but it does not actually build muscle.

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