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Orzo with Lemon, Garlic, Parmigiano & Herbs

Scott Phillips

Servings: 6 to 8 as a side dish

Similar in texture to risotto, this dish is simple yet rich.


  • 3 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
  • 3 medium cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • Kosher salt
  • 3 cups low-salt chicken broth
  • 5 Tbs. unsalted butter, cut into 5 pieces
  • 1 lb. orzo
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano; more for sprinkling
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 tsp. fresh thyme leaves, lightly chopped
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size based on eight servings
  • Calories (kcal) : 310
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 80
  • Fat (g): 9
  • Saturated Fat (g): 5
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 2.5
  • Cholesterol (mg): 20
  • Sodium (mg): 360
  • Carbohydrates (g): 45
  • Fiber (g): 3
  • Protein (g): 11


  • Combine the lemon juice, garlic, and a generous pinch of salt in a small bowl and set aside.
  • Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil over high heat.
  • Meanwhile, put the chicken broth in a medium (3-quart) saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Boil until the broth has reduced to 1 cup, 20 to 30 minutes. Reduce the heat to low. Add the lemon-garlic mixture and whisk in the butter one piece at a time. Keep warm.
  • Cook the orzo in the boiling water until barely al dente, about 8 minutes. Drain and immediately toss with the broth mixture. Add the 1/2 cup Parmigiano and the parsley and thyme. Season to taste with salt and pepper and toss well to combine. Serve immediately, sprinkled with additional Parmigiano.


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Reviews (15 reviews)

  • gabbyv50 | 12/20/2016

    This is my "go to" recipe when I want something special. I have made it so many times over the years that it is now requested. It is always delicious as the original recipe stands.

  • meirin | 08/10/2012

    I made this dish for my family and it was a hit. I did do a few things different after reading that people were having texture problems. I first made doubly sure the stock was reduced to 1 cup. I cooked the orzo for 7 minutes only and after draining it I put the pot with the orzo back on the hot burner while tossing the pasta just to dry it a bit more. I then added the rest of the ingredients. The orzo turned out al dente and there was no problem with soupiness.

  • twood | 02/17/2011

    I make this dish often because it is easy and tastes great. I don't generally use the full amount of chicken stock, so I have never had problem with it being soupy. Sometimes I use feta instead of parmesan and add some red bell peppers for color or pine nuts for texture. It's pretty versatile.

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