Spicy Shrimp with Lemon & Avocado Orzo Pasta Salad

If there’s two things I love with a pasta salad, it has to be using orzo and Mediterranean flavors.  When you combine the two with delicious ingredients like basil, avocado, proteins like shrimp or chicken and add a bit of spice, you get amazing flavors that will make everyone fall in love with your dish.  This recipe for a spicy lemon, avocado and basil shrimp pasta salad is going to be one of my go to recipes for summer.

Spicy Shrimp with Lemon & Avocado Orzo Pasta Salad

If you're ready for a go to orzo pasta salad for summer, this spicy shrimp with lemon and avocado orzo pasta salad is the one you'll want.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mediterranean
Servings: 2 people


  • 12-14 shrimp
  • 1 avocado cubed
  • 1 lemon zested and halved
  • 3/4 cup orzo
  • 1 large bunch fresh basil leaves chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1 large Roma tomato chopped (I prefer to use 4-6 Campari tomatoes)
  • 1/2 tbsp chili pepper flakes
  • olive oil extra virgin
  • sea salt
  • ground black pepper
  • wooden skewers soaked in water


  • Start by soaking your skewers (if you use them in water) and preheat your oven to 500 degrees. While the oven is preheating, heat salted water in a medium to large pot (add a good amount of extra virgin olive oil to prevent the orzo from sticking together) and prep your produce. 
  • Now place the chopped tomatoes and white wine vinegar in a bowl with sea salt and black pepper. Mix it together and set it aside.
  • Now take the butter and melt it over medium heat. Add sea salt and pepper, half of the chopped basil and some garlic then squeeze in the juice from half of the lemon and remove from the heat.
  • Now add the orzo to the boiling salted water and let it cook until it's al dente or fully cooked. While it's cooking, combine the basil with extra virgin olive oil, garlic, chili powder flakes and lemon zest into a bowl and mix with the shrimp.
  • Once the shrimp are coated, place them on a baking sheet or skewer them (if you want to serve them on skewers) and then place in the oven for 2 to 3 minutes. Then flip them over and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes until they're done.
  • Once the orzo has cooled, place it in a large bowl, drain the tomatoes and add them with the avocado and other ingredients (including the remaining herbs, garlic, etc...) and then mix everything together. Last squeeze the remaining lemon half, toss one more time and then serve.


You can modify by changing out the shrimp for chicken, adding cheese like feta which tastes amazing with tomatoes and lemon or even modifying the herbs you use.

This recipe is amazing and will definitely be a hit this summer. I’ll be making this one for parties and anything else where you need something delicious, light and that will be able to serve everyone and not cost a ton of money.  The original version of this recipe came from my HelloFresh subscription.

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