Middle Eastern-Inspired Macaroni Salad

Total Time

Prep/Total Time: 25 min.


8 servings

Updated: Aug. 09, 2023
This creamy, tangy macaroni salad is inspired by the many wonderful flavors of the Middle East. The za'atar seasoning gives it an earthy (and delicious!) taste. —Ruth Hartunian-Alumbaugh, Willimantic, Connecticut
Middle Eastern-Inspired Macaroni Salad Recipe photo by Taste of Home


  • 2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni
  • 1/2 pound ground lamb
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 can (16 ounces) garbanzo beans or chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons za'atar seasoning
  • Optional toppings: plain yogurt and lemon zest


  1. Cook macaroni according to package directions; drain and rinse with cold water. Cool completely. Meanwhile, in a small skillet, cook lamb over medium heat until no longer pink, 6-7 minutes, breaking into crumbles; drain. Set aside to cool completely.
  2. For dressing, in a small bowl, combine mayonnaise, sugar, mustard, salt and pepper. In a large bowl, combine chickpeas, onion, za'atar seasoning, macaroni and lamb. Add dressing; gently toss to coat.
  3. Refrigerate until serving. Top with yogurt and lemon zest if desired.

Nutrition Facts

3/4 cup: 361 calories, 25g fat (5g saturated fat), 21mg cholesterol, 329mg sodium, 24g carbohydrate (3g sugars, 3g fiber), 10g protein.