This Mediterranean pomegranate and orange couscous salad is fresh and easy to make. Brighten up dull days with this colourful vegan side dish full of seasonal fruits.
We first made this winter couscous salad in Portugal, where oranges are so plentiful that you can often find them free or falling to the ground. (Watch out for the bitter ones, best for making marmalade, not for eating) Oranges can be so cheap in Portugal that you can buy a crate for what you would pay for a small bag back in the UK.
Portugal is also famous for its almond crop. If you have a moment to read a short tale, then let us share this beautiful legend that tells how the country got its almond trees:
When the Algarve was still known as the Al-Gharb under the rule of the Moors, a Moorish King fell in love with a Nordic Princess. They married, but soon the Princess became sad. The king consulted doctors from all over land, to find out why his beloved was so miserable.
The princess missed the winter landscape of her homeland, all covered in white snow. So the king planted thousands of almond trees across the Algarve. Spring came, and the hills of the Algarve turned white and almond blossoms fell like snow. This romantic gesture lifted the spirits of the Princess and they lived happily ever after…
I think the Moorish King and his Nordic Princess would rather like our colourful couscous salad with orange and almonds! Made, as with all our vegan recipes, with love.
Ingredient and cooking tips
Couscous can be a little bland on it’s own, so it is perfect for flavouring up in different ways. In this recipe we use a combination of ingredients typical to the Mediterranean: oranges, pomegranate seeds, raisins, almonds and couscous combine to make a delicious and flavour packed vegan couscous salad.
- Choose fine to medium couscous that can be prepared by simply pouring boiling water over it. Cover while it soaks and then stir in the fresh orange juice and olive oil and fluffy up the grains with a fork.
- We like to use organic oranges and almonds if you can get them – better for you and the planet. And they can taste so much better too.
- For our fellow zero waste inclined vegan friends: We often use whole almonds as you can buy them plastic free, packaged in their own shells. And for couscous we often get it from a refill shop, or simply in a cardboard box.
- Toasting the nuts brings out more of their flavour and makes them crisp. If you are making the salad in advance, only add the almonds just before serving.
Change it up
Why not vary this mediterranean couscous salad by:
- Adding a can of drained chickpeas
- Stirring in some roasted veggies such as red pepper and onions
- Adding fresh herbs when they are in season – such as mint or coriander
- Grate in some veggies like carrots, courgettes or add some chopped cucumber for a summer couscous salad
We hope you enjoy this colourful couscous! Come back and try these other easy vegan recipes next time:
Vegan Potato Salad – it’s so quick and easy
and our fan favourite Vegan Corn Fritters
Mediterranean Couscous Salad with Pomegranate & Orange
- 1 cup couscous
- 2 tsp stock powder or bouillon
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 1/2 cups boiling water
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 orange
- 2 tbsp raisins
- 1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
- 2 tbsp almonds whole or flaked
- Place the couscous, stock powder, and spices in a heatproof bowl.
- Pour the boiling water over the couscous and cover it with a lid or plate. Leave for 5 mins
- In the meantime, chop the almonds (or use flaked) and toast them in a pan until they start to brown
- Juice half the orange and peel and cut the other half into pieces
- Uncover the couscous and stir in the olive oil and orange juice and fluff it up with a fork
- Stir in the raisins, orange pieces and pomegranate seeds.
- Top with the toasted almonds just before serving.
We hope you liked our mediterranean couscous salad recipe!
Sophie and Paul