One Pot Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo

Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo is a zesty one-pot meal featuring juicy chicken thighs, orzo, feta, and lemon pepper for tons of flavor!

The post One Pot Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Welcome to another episode of “How can so few ingredients make such a delicious meal?!” One-pot meals are a miracle, my friends, and this Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo is the perfect example. This dish is packed with flavor thanks to a hefty dose of lemon pepper, chicken broth, juicy chicken thighs, and a pop of feta at the end. Plus, it’s fast, easy, and barely anything to clean up afterward. :)

Originally posted 8/5/2015, updated 8/15/2022.

Overhead view of lemon pepper chicken and orzo in the skillet with a napkin and parsley on the sides.

What’s in Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo

For this skillet meal, I liberally seasoned some bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs with lemon pepper, then combined it with some orzo, chicken broth, and parsley. Everything gets cooked together in one pot so that orzo soaks up all the flavor from both the chicken thighs and the broth, and not a drop of flavor is lost. It’s so simple, yet so good. Add a quick little side salad with fresh greens and you’ve got a five-star dinner (and very few dishes to clean). Victory!

Can I Use Boneless Chicken?

I used bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs for this recipe, but you can use boneless thighs or breasts if you prefer. The chicken will cook a little faster if you use boneless and you might miss out on a little bit of the flavor that comes with bone-in chicken. Also, be aware that chicken breasts do tend to dry out faster than chicken thighs, so the end product won’t be quite as juicy.

Tips for Cooking One Pot Pasta

Getting one pot pasta meals to cook just right can take a little practice, but here are a few tips to make sure your pasta cooks evenly and all the way through without leaving too much liquid behind:

  • Use a heavy or thick-bottomed piece of cookware. Thin cookware doesn’t cook evenly and can leave some pasta undercooked and some pasta overcooked. A deep skillet or Dutch Oven will work well for this recipe.
  • Use a burner that is close in size to the bottom of your pot or pan. If the burner is a lot smaller than the width of the pan, you may have trouble getting the outside edges to cook evenly.
  • Make sure the broth is simmering the whole time. Heat settings on ranges can vary, so you may need to adjust the heat up or down slightly to maintain a simmer in the broth.

Lemon pepper chicken and orzo in a shallow bowl with a fork.

Overhead view of a pot full of lemon pepper chicken and orzo.

One Pot Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo

Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo is a zesty one-pot meal featuring juicy chicken thighs, orzo, feta, and lemon pepper for tons of flavor!
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine American
Total Cost $7.54 recipe / $1.89 serving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 612kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 4 chicken thighs* $3.74
  • 2 Tbsp lemon pepper seasoning $0.60
  • 1 Tbsp cooking oil $0.04
  • 2 cloves garlic $0.16
  • 2 cups chicken broth $0.26
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley $0.20
  • 1.5 cups orzo $1.29
  • 2 oz. feta, crumbled $1.25

Instructions

  • Blot the chicken thighs dry with a paper towel, then season both sides liberally with lemon pepper seasoning (about 2 Tbsp lemon pepper total).
  • Heat a large deep skillet over medium. Once hot, add the cooking oil. Add the seasoned chicken thighs, skin side down, and let them cook undisturbed until browned (about 6-8 minutes for bone-in skin-on thighs). Flip the chicken thighs and cook until browned on the second side. The chicken will be cooked most of the way through at this point but will finish cooking when simmered with the orzo. Remove the chicken to a clean plate.
  • While the chicken is browning, roughly chop about 1/4 bunch of parsley and mince two cloves of garlic. After removing the chicken from the skillet, turn the heat down to low, add the minced garlic, and sauté the garlic in the residual fat for about a minute.
  • Add 2 cups of chicken broth to the skillet and stir to dissolve the crispy browned bits from the bottom of the pan. 
  • Add the orzo and half of the chopped parsley. Stir to combine. Finally, return the chicken to the skillet, skin side up.
  • Place a lid on the skillet, turn the heat up to high, and let the broth come to a full boil. Once it reaches a boil, turn the heat down to low. Let the skillet simmer on low for about 15 minutes, or until most of the broth has been absorbed. Make sure it’s simmering the whole time. If it stops simmering, increase the heat slightly until it just starts to simmer again.
  • After about 15 minutes the orzo should be tender and most of the broth absorbed but there will still be a little sauce in the skillet.
  • Fluff the orzo around the chicken a bit with a fork, then top with the remaining parsley and the crumbled feta. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

*I used bone-in chicken thighs with skin, but you could use boneless and skinless, if preferred.

Nutrition

Serving: 1Serving | Calories: 612kcal | Carbohydrates: 46g | Protein: 34g | Fat: 32g | Sodium: 715mg | Fiber: 3g

Close up side view of lemon pepper chicken and orzo in the pan.

How to Make One Pot Chicken and Orzo – Step by Step Photos

Bone-in chicken thighs seasoned with lemon pepper on a cutting board.

Start by blotting four chicken thighs dry with a paper towel. Drying them helps the seasoning stick and helps them brown better in the skillet. I used bone-in thighs with skin, but you could use boneless, skinless if desired. Just keep in mind that boneless and skinless thighs are usually a bit more expensive and will cook faster. Season both sides of each thigh liberally with lemon pepper seasoning (about 2 Tbsp total). 

Browned chicken thighs in the skillet.

Heat a large deep skillet over medium. Once hot, add 1 Tbsp cooking oil. Add the seasoned chicken thighs, skin side down, and let them cook undisturbed until browned (about 6-8 minutes for bone-in skin-on thighs). Flip the chicken thighs and cook until browned on the second side. The chicken will be cooked most of the way through at this point but will finish cooking when simmered with the orzo. Remove the chicken to a clean plate.

Garlic added to the skillet.

While the chicken is browning, roughly chop about 1/4 bunch of parsley and mince two cloves of garlic. Turn the heat down to low, add the minced garlic, and sauté the garlic in the residual fat for about a minute.

Broth being poured into the skillet.

Add 2 cups of chicken broth to the skillet and stir to dissolve the crispy browned bits from the bottom of the pan. 

Broth being whisked in the skillet to dissolve chicken drippings.

The broth will turn a deep brown color as the drippings are dissolved into the mixture.

Parsley and orzo added to the skillet.

Add about half of the chopped parsley and 1.5 cups of orzo. Stir to combine.

Chicken thighs added back to the pot.

Finally, return the chicken to the skillet, skin side up. Place a lid on the skillet, turn the heat up to high, and let the broth come to a full boil. Once it reaches a boil, turn the heat down to low. Let the skillet simmer on low for about 15 minutes, or until most of the broth has been absorbed. Make sure it’s simmering the whole time. If it stops simmering, increase the heat slightly until it just starts to simmer again.

Cooked orzo and chicken in the pot.

After about 15 minutes the orzo should be tender and most of the broth absorbed but there will still be a little sauce in the skillet.

Finished lemon pepper chicken and orzo in the pan.

Fluff the orzo around the chicken a bit with a fork, then top with the remaining parsley and the crumbled feta. And that’s all it takes to make this simple Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo. I could seriously eat this orzo all day long. ALL. DAY. LONG.

Overhead view of lemon pepper chicken and orzo in a bowl.

Try These Other One Pot Chicken Recipes:

The post One Pot Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Orzo Salad with Grapes, Arugula, & Feta

My Easy Orzo Salad is always a favorite, I make it all of the time. I love adding orzo to salads because it is satisfying, a great way to bulk up any salad. My new favorite orzo salad is this Orzo Salad with Grapes, Arugula, and Feta Cheese. The flavor…

My Easy Orzo Salad is always a favorite, I make it all of the time. I love adding orzo to salads because it is satisfying, a great way to bulk up any salad. My new favorite orzo salad is this Orzo Salad with Grapes, Arugula, and Feta Cheese. The flavors, textures, and colors are fantastic.…

Easy Lemon Orzo

Here’s how to cook orzo as a simple side dish! This rice-shaped pasta comes together in minutes, flavored simply with…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

Here’s how to cook orzo as a simple side dish! This rice-shaped pasta comes together in minutes, flavored simply with butter and lemon.

Lemon Butter Orzo

Here’s a clutch pantry staple recipe to accessorize with quick weeknight meals: orzo! This rice-shaped pasta is ultra fast to cook, making it ideal for nights where you need something on the table fast. This orzo recipe is incredibly simple but comes out comforting and nostalgic, pairing the tender grains with butter and a hint of lemon. It’s so tasty, you’ll quickly add it to your regular rotation…then wonder how you lived so long without it!

What is orzo?

Orzo is a small pasta that’s shaped like grains of rice. Known as risoni in Italy, it can be served in various ways: as a side dish, pilaf, as part of an orzo salad, or in soups. There are two main ways to cook orzo: boiled in a large amount of water like pasta, or cooked like rice where it simmers and absorbs all the liquid.

There are several sizes of orzo available in stores: we prefer the medium sized grains that are about the size of grains of rice. You can also find different colors of orzo, like tricolor orzo that’s colored naturally with sundried tomatoes and spinach.

Orzo

How to cook orzo

There are two methods for cooking orzo: the pasta method (cooking in a large pot of boiling water and draining) and the rice method (simmering with less water until it’s all absorbed). The best way to avoid sticky orzo is the pasta method: it makes deliciously tender, well-separated grains. The rice method comes out creamier, but you run the risk of it coming out sticky or waterlogged. Here’s how to cook orzo:

  • Bring a pot of water to a boil. Estimate about 8 cups water per 1 cup orzo.
  • Add the orzo, bring back to a boil, and cook for 8 minutes. Taste a grain. If it’s mostly tender with a small amount of “chew” in the middle, it’s done. If not, cook 1 to 2 more minutes: just take care not to overcook it.
  • Drain and season. Drain the water from the pot, then return the orzo back to the pot. Season with salt, butter and lemon juice. Instant side dish!
Orzo recipe

Flavor variations

This simple orzo recipe with butter, salt and a squeeze of lemon is so simple yet satisfying! The buttery flavor almost reminds us of an elevated version of boxed max and cheese (without the cheese!). There are loads of ways to step up this simple dish: here are a few ideas:

  • Chopped herbs. A bit of chopped parsley looks lovely, or add chopped thyme or chives.
  • Parmesan cheese. Swirl in a bit of grated Parmesan to take it to new heights.
  • Feta cheese. A sprinkle of feta cheese adds a nice salty counterpoint.
  • Garlic. Saute a minced garlic clove in a bit of butter or olive oil, then mix it into the cooked orzo with the salt.
  • Spinach. Saute baby spinach (with or without garlic), then add the cooked orzo and salt. Feta cheese would be another nice addition!
Orzo

More orzo recipes

There are lots of ways to use orzo! Here are some ideas, from this website and others:

Let us know what you think of the simple side dish recipe below, and any other ways you love to serve orzo.

More basic side dishes

This orzo recipe has saved us on many a weeknight. (In fact, as I’m writing this Alex is just bringing me a dish of this exact recipe!) Here are a few more simple side dishes perfect for rounding out a meal:

This orzo recipe is…

Vegetarian. For vegan, use olive oil or plant-based butter.

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Lemon Butter Orzo

Easy Orzo Recipe


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 2 minutes
  • Cook Time: 8 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 4 ½ cup servings

Description

Here’s how to cook orzo as a simple side dish! This rice-shaped pasta comes together in minutes, flavored simply with butter and lemon.


Ingredients

  • 1 cup orzo
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon butter (or olive oil)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (½ lemon)
  • Chopped fresh parsley or feta cheese crumbles, for garnish (optional)

Instructions

  1. Fill a medium pot with 8 cups water and bring it to a boil. Once boiling, add the orzo and stir.
  2. Bring the pot back to a boil, then boil for about 8 minutes until the orzo is tender. (Taste test a grain to assess doneness.) Drain into a strainer, then return the orzo to the pot.
  3. Stir in the kosher salt, butter (or olive oil), and lemon juice. Taste and if desired, add more lemon to taste. Add optional chopped parsley or feta cheese to garnish. Serve immediately; leftovers store refrigerated for up to 5 days.
  • Category: Side dish
  • Method: Boiled
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean
  • Diet: Vegan

Keywords: Orzo, orzo recipe, what is orzo

A Couple Cooks - Recipes worth repeating.

Parmesan Herb Orzo.

This parmesan orzo is our all-time favorite side dish! It is so incredibly versatile. It goes with everything in all seasons. Serve alongside chicken, fish, steak, beans or your favorite vegetarian dish. Or alternatively titled, The Side Dish For Everything!  Seriously. You will absolutely LOVE this parmesan orzo. It’s a side dish that never gets […]

The post Parmesan Herb Orzo. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

This parmesan orzo is our all-time favorite side dish! It is so incredibly versatile. It goes with everything in all seasons. Serve alongside chicken, fish, steak, beans or your favorite vegetarian dish.

Or alternatively titled, The Side Dish For Everything! 

parmesan herb orzo

Seriously. You will absolutely LOVE this parmesan orzo. It’s a side dish that never gets old and can be served with almost any dish. During any season! At any meal!

Tell me that’s not the best. 

orzo pasta in a measuring cup

So! This was the most made side dish in our house in 2021. It’s no secret that we LOVE orzo, but cooking it this way as a side dish is how we love it most. Yes I love all my fancy orzo salads for meals. They take longer though and requre a few steps. 

cooked orzo in a pot with parmesan cheese

This is simple. This is your Monday night side dish to go with everything – chicken, steak, salmon or even a vegetarian dish. It holds up against meatloaf or roasted shrimp. It’s really delicious, classic and traditional and something everyone in our family loves.

I love to use fresh herbs, but considering it’s the dead of winter right now, you can stir in a few dried herbs instead. Or you can forgo the herbs until your garden is flourishing this summer and just keep it to the parmesan cheese for now. No one will complain! 

cooked orzo in a pot with fresh herbs

It’s a little different than the traditional orzo. 

I cook this orzo like rice! I don’t boil it and then drain. Instead, I use a chicken or vegetable stock and simmer until it absorbs the liquid. Add lots of herbs, lots of parm and boom, it’s done.

The other thing that I love is toasting the orzo in butter! I toast it like I do with arborio rice for risotto. This gives it a depth of flavor that is wonderful. If you look closely at my photos, you may even see some toasted orzo bits. We love it! 

parmesan herb orzo close up

It’s cheesy and chewy and a little toasty and delish.

parmesan herb orzo in a pot

Plus, you can have it made in 25 minutes! And the leftovers are still super good when reheated. (more…)

The post Parmesan Herb Orzo. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

Roasted Butternut Squash Orzo Salad

I love roasted butternut squash, it is one of my favorite fall vegetables. I could eat it plain all day long, but I also love it in this Roasted Butternut Squash Orzo Salad. My easy orzo salad is one of the most popular salad recipes on our blog and I …

I love roasted butternut squash, it is one of my favorite fall vegetables. I could eat it plain all day long, but I also love it in this Roasted Butternut Squash Orzo Salad. My easy orzo salad is one of the most popular salad recipes on our blog and I think you will love the…

The post Roasted Butternut Squash Orzo Salad appeared first on Two Peas & Their Pod.

Our 23 Favorite Orzo Recipes for Speedy, Satisfying Dinners

Orzo is pasta pretending to be rice, and nobody is upset about it. It’s a perfect shape for “grain” salads that won’t glop or go stiff after a few hours in the sun. The spoonable shape makes it a natural addition to warm soups and stews too, and it takes on the flavor of meaty entrees like a champ. In the spirit of orzo appreciation, here are 23 wonderful ways to use it.

Salads

1. Grilled Zucchini Orzo

Don’t have a grill or grill pan? Roast or broil the vegetables here instead, especially the garlic. I’ve written a love letter to this recipe before, specifically the contrast created by the orzo-to-zucchini ratio and the wildcard ingredient of sesame oil.

Read More >>

Orzo is pasta pretending to be rice, and nobody is upset about it. It’s a perfect shape for "grain" salads that won’t glop or go stiff after a few hours in the sun. The spoonable shape makes it a natural addition to warm soups and stews too, and it takes on the flavor of meaty entrees like a champ. In the spirit of orzo appreciation, here are 23 wonderful ways to use it.

Salads

1. Grilled Zucchini Orzo

Don’t have a grill or grill pan? Roast or broil the vegetables here instead, especially the garlic. I’ve written a love letter to this recipe before, specifically the contrast created by the orzo-to-zucchini ratio and the wildcard ingredient of sesame oil.

Read More >>

One Pot Garlic Butter Shrimp and Orzo.

This one pot shrimp orzo is so ridiculously delish! If you can’t tell, I’m having a little moment with shrimp and butter and lemon. I mean, at least it’s a delicious moment? This is weeknight dinner gold. I love a meal that can be thrown together in a few minutes and tastes like absolute heaven. […]

The post One Pot Garlic Butter Shrimp and Orzo. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

This one pot shrimp orzo is so ridiculously delish!

one pot garlic butter shrimp and orzo

If you can’t tell, I’m having a little moment with shrimp and butter and lemon. I mean, at least it’s a delicious moment?

This is weeknight dinner gold. I love a meal that can be thrown together in a few minutes and tastes like absolute heaven. When I make this, we cannot stop eating it. Every bite is more incredible than the last.

orzo toasting in brown butter

Why is orzo just oh-so good?! Sure, it’s like rice, but even better. 

I love how it sticks to whatever you toss it with, in a good way. It makes a dish more satisfying too. Plus, it soaks up all the wonderful flavors in the pot.

marinating shrimp in lemon and garlic

Let’s make it tonight!

I toss the shrimp with some olive oil, lemon, salt, pepper and garlic. Crushed red pepper flakes too! Just give it a bit of flavor.

one pot garlic butter shrimp and orzo

Then, the best part? Toasting the orzo in butter. Almost as if it’s arborio rice and you’re making risotto. Let it get a little toasty and golden. At the same time, the butter will brown too. THIS IS WHERE THE FLAVOR IS AT!

All the garlic butter feels start here. I’m all about layering flavor from the bottom up. The garlic butter is fragrant and wonderful and then the toasty orzo gives it even more of a nutty flavor. It’s perfect!

one pot garlic butter shrimp and orzo

The only thing left to do is add the stock, cover the pot and let it go. About 20 minutes later, dinner is ready! 

The beauty in this dish is that both the orzo and shrimp cook quickly. It tastes more flavorful than it looks, which is wild since there are only about ten ingredients in the entire dish.

one pot garlic butter shrimp and orzo

This isn’t an overly complicated dish and it’s certainly not anything groundbreaking. But it’s just one of those recipes that is darn good. Easy but shockingly good. Everyone loves it and you may be tempted to make a double batch. Leftovers are fantastic. It’s simple enough that you can throw a roasted vegetable in the oven if you wish. The best kind of recipe! (more…)

The post One Pot Garlic Butter Shrimp and Orzo. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

Creamy Chicken and Orzo Soup.

This creamy chicken and orzo soup will warm your soul!  With so many of you under snow right now, this is the perfect hug in a bowl. The most comforting chicken orzo soup bowl that will keep you warm, that will bring happiness to a friend or family and all while tasting delicious! Oh and […]

The post Creamy Chicken and Orzo Soup. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

This creamy chicken and orzo soup will warm your soul! 

creamy chicken and orzo soup

With so many of you under snow right now, this is the perfect hug in a bowl. The most comforting chicken orzo soup bowl that will keep you warm, that will bring happiness to a friend or family and all while tasting delicious!

Oh and it’s extra satisfying too. 

chopped celery, carrots and onion

We have had a ton of snow this week – and more snow the last few weeks that we’ve had in years. As a kid, I remember us having TONS of snow, the entire winter. Or at least it seemed the way. We haven’t had anything like this recently, so we’ve enjoyed lots of comfort food on repeat. No one is complaining about that. 

Enter, this creamy chicken and orzo soup!

pot of chicken orzo soup

This isn’t my first foray into creamy chicken noodle soup. I have a recipe for it in my book Seriously Delish – like the classic kind with egg noodles. When I make a creamy chicken soup, I prefer it to thicken it with a slurry instead of cream or starting with a roux. My mom uses this method for certain dishes and I love it! There are just some recipes that call for it, and this is it. The slurry adds a creaminess without making it feel overly heavy. It’s perfect!

And yes, why this might be one of the onnnnly recipes you’ll see here with celery. I can handle it in a chicken soup, but as you know, the remaining options are few and far between. Celery is usually a no go over here.

creamy chicken and orzo soup

One of the reasons that I love this dish so much for our family? It kind of gives me chopped salad vibes. I know that sounds absolutely insane – I mean, this is soup, not salad. 

BUT!

The orzo is such a lovely little cut of pasta that you can get a bit of everything in each bite. There isn’t a big noodle taking up your whole spoon with just a touch of broth. For this reason alone, my kids LOVE this.

Since making this, Emilia asks for “soup” constantly – she’s had other soups and likes them, but when she says soup, she means this one. She loves that she can eat it with her spoon and get a full spoonful of flavor, chicken and pasta is one bite! It’s seriously perfect for little ones. 

creamy chicken and orzo soup

I like to use some of the classic tricks to make chicken noodle soup come to life here. Definitely add a parmesan cheese rind if you have one. It adds a wonderful richness to the soup that you can’t find elsewhere. The flavor is divine.

Also, spritz some lemon in before serving! This brightens things up and while I love my classic lemon chicken soup, adding just a spritz here really enhances the flavor too.

creamy chicken and orzo soup

I highly suggest using a rotisserie chicken (or leftover shredded chicken) for ease here. When you do that, this soup comes together SO fast – like we are talking 30 minutes fast. Making it an ideal weeknight meal! I have some tips listed below in the recipe card if you want to meal prep this or use it for leftovers (i.e. cook the orzo separately) and it really makes a lovely meal to enjoy all times of year. 

You gotta try it!

creamy chicken and orzo soup

Creamy Chicken and Orzo Soup

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Creamy Chicken and Orzo Soup

This creamy chicken and orzo soup is like a hug in a bowl. Creamy chicken soup with orzo pasta and parmesan. Delicious and comforting!
Course Soup
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4 people
Author How Sweet Eats

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 sweet onion, diced
  • 3 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 celery sticks, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • kosher salt and pepper
  • ½ teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • 1 ½ cups cooked, shredded chicken
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 1 parmesan cheese rind
  • 1 cup uncooked orzo pasta
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons fresh parsley, plus more for topping
  • parmesan cheese, for topping
  • lemon wedges, for spritzing

Instructions

  • Heat the butter in a large stock pot over medium-low heat. Add in the onion, carrots, celery and garlic with a big pinch of salt and pepper - I’d say at least ½ teaspoon salt and pepper to start. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables soften. Stir in the garlic cloves and poultry seasoning. Stir in the shredded chicken.
  • Add in the chicken stock and the parmesan rind. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce it to a simmer. Stir in the orzo pasta. Cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the orzo is al dente, about 8 minutes.
  • In a shaker bottle even a bowl, shake (or whisk) together the milk and flour to form a slurry. Pour this into the soup and simmer for another 1 to 2 minutes. Taste and season with more salt and pepper as needed. If the parmesan rind didn’t melt entirely, you can scoop it out at this point. Stir in the fresh parsley.
  • Serve immediately with a lemon wedge for sprinkling, parmesan cheese for topping and parsley sprinkled on top.
  • Note: if you want to prep this for meals ahead of time, or want to have it for leftovers, I suggest cooking the orzo separately as it will soak up most of the broth as it sits overnight. Combine the soup and orzo and reheat to enjoy!

creamy chicken and orzo soup

Super cozy!

The post Creamy Chicken and Orzo Soup. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

Easy Orzo Salad

I love making and taking pasta salads to potlucks, barbecues, and get togethers. They are the perfect side dish for sharing. This Easy Orzo Pasta Salad is a summertime favorite. It’s a versatile and delicious side that everyone loves! I always br…

I love making and taking pasta salads to potlucks, barbecues, and get togethers. They are the perfect side dish for sharing. This Easy Orzo Pasta Salad is a summertime favorite. It’s a versatile and delicious side that everyone loves! I always bring an empty bowl home–no leftovers! This Orzo Pasta Salad is the MVP of…

Grilled Vegetable Orzo with Smashed Feta Vinaigrette.

This grilled vegetable orzo will be your new summer BFF. It’s loaded with flavor. Everyone loves it. It should be dinner tonight! Okay, but seriously? This orzo has been on repeat for weeks now. IT IS SO GOOD. First, let’s talk about how versatile it is. You can basically throw whatever veggies you have and […]

The post Grilled Vegetable Orzo with Smashed Feta Vinaigrette. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

This grilled vegetable orzo will be your new summer BFF.

grilled vegetable orzo with smashed feta vinaigrette

It’s loaded with flavor. Everyone loves it. It should be dinner tonight!

vegetables ready for the grill

Okay, but seriously? This orzo has been on repeat for weeks now. IT IS SO GOOD.

mushrooms with olive oil

First, let’s talk about how versatile it is. You can basically throw whatever veggies you have and love on the grill. There is no right or wrong here, as long as it’s vegetables you like. It’s a great way to do a clean-out-the-fridge meal and use up everything that’s about to spoil. 

orzo

The veggies that I always do for flavor purposes alone: mushrooms, bell peppers and broccoli.

Those are my faves!

However, as you can see in the photos, I add in many many more vegetables too. Cauliflower, zucchini and scallions here. I also like to throw in asparagus and/or green beans.

Everything ends up tasting incredible thanks to the charred, smoky flavor from the grill, but I also add a dash of balsamic vinegar to make the flavor pop.

grilled vegetables

When it comes to grilling, the way you grill the vegetables may vary. I love using this grilling basket and this grilling pan for almost all the vegetables. But if you have mushrooms that are thinly sliced, then I suggest grilling them in foil. They will get very crisp and this is where you can add that balsamic flavor. 

Of course, if you don’t have a grill, this works just as well with roasted vegetables too. Winning all around right here!

smashed feta vinaigrette

Now this vinaigrette. Oh my gosh. This might be my favorite dressing of the summer. I’m calling it now. My new signature!

You make a classic vinaigrette with red wine vinegar, some herbs, salt, pepper and garlic, them smash feta into that mixture while bring it together. Add your olive oil and boom! It’s perfect.

orzo with smashed feta vinaigrette

This reminds me a lot of a blue cheese vinaigrette I’ve been perfecting for a long time. The recipe will be in my next book! There’s just something about these soft cheeses that marinate in the dressing. Fantastic. 

grilled vegetable orzo with smashed feta vinaigrette

More great news:

You can make this ahead of time. Yes! The entire thing. Even this past weekend I made it almost a full 24 hours ahead of time and served it as a cold pasta salad. The flavors become more pronounced and everything marries together even more.

grilled vegetable orzo with smashed feta vinaigrette

So yes, that means you can serve this warm or cold. It’s totally your choice.

What I’ve been doing? If I want to make it for dinner, then we tend to eat it warm. I grilled the vegetables while making the orzo then toss it all together and serve. If you want to make it for a gathering with family or friends, I suggest taking it at room temp (so making it right before you leave) or serving it cold. All the ways are delicious. 

grilled vegetable orzo with smashed feta vinaigrette

If you do go the dinner route, you can serve this alone, serve it as the main dish with a greens salad or serve it as a side with some grilled chicken or salmon. Of course, you can also add chicken or beans or whatever else you’d like right into the salad. 

What I’m really saying is take this and make it your own. You’ll have wonderful leftovers. And double the dressing because you will freak over it! 

grilled vegetable orzo with smashed feta vinaigrette

Grilled Vegetable Orzo with Smashed Feta Vinaigrette

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Grilled Vegetable Orzo with Smashed Feta Vinaigrette

This grilled vegetable orzo is the perfect dish to serve warm or cold! Tossed with feta vinaigrette, the flavor is incredible!
Course Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Author How Sweet Eats

Ingredients

  • 1 pound orzo pasta
  • 12 ounces shiitake mushrooms
  • 1 cup broccoli florets
  • 1 cup cauliflower florets
  • 2 bell peppers, chopped
  • 4 green onions
  • 1 medium zucchini squash, cut into rounds or spears
  • olive oil for drizzling
  • balsamic vinegar for drizzling
  • salt, pepper and garlic powder for sprinkling
  • crumbled feta for serving
  • fresh herbs, like dill and chives, for serving

smashed feta vinaigrette

  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped dill
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped chives
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • salt and pepper
  • cup crumbled feta cheese
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil

Instructions

  • Note: there is no wrong way to do the vegetables here! Cut them as you wish (at least large enough so they don’t fall through grates/grill pan), use the vegetables you wish - whatever you love most!
  • Preheat the grill to high. Make the dressing first and set it aside.
  • Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and cook the orzo according to the package directions - usually around 8 minutes for al dente. If the orzo is finished before everything else is, toss with a spoonful of olive oil so the pasta doesn’t stick together. Grill the vegetables while the water boils and orzo cooks.
  • I find that I need 2 grill baskets/trays here to do all the vegetables. You can of course put vegetables right on the grill too - especially things like large pieces of bell peppers, asparagus, zucchini rounds or spears, etc. Toss the vegetables with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. If desired, you can also toss with 1 to 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar.
  • If the mushrooms are sliced, I put them on a sheet of foil. (if they are whole, you can place them directly on the grill or grill plate.) Drizzle the mushrooms with olive oil and add 1 to 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar. You can add cracked black pepper and garlic powder too. Wait to salt until the mushrooms cook.
  • Place the vegetables on the grill. Cook for 10 to 15 minutes total, tossing and turning some of the vegetables every few minutes. The length of time will depend on how small you cut your vegetables, so keep an eye on them. I check every 5 minutes or so.
  • Once the vegetables are done, toss them in a large bowl with the orzo. Pout the feta vinaigrette on top and toss. You can add in extra feta, fresh dill or chives if you wish. Either serve immediately, or store in the fridge until you serve. You can make this 24 hours ahead of time. Leftovers are great!

smashed feta vinaigrette

  • In a bowl, whisk together the vinegar, lemon juice, honey, salt, pepper, herbs and feta. Use a spoon or whisk to smash some of the feta into the mixture. Whisk the olive oil into the dressing until combined. You can make this ahead of time and store it in the fridge. It will separate but whisking or shaking will bring it back together.

grilled vegetable orzo with smashed feta vinaigrette

Holy.flavor.

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