Creamy Italian Orzo

Creamy Italian Orzo

Ready in 35 minutes
27 review(s) averaging 4.5. 88% would make again

Top-ranked recipe named "Creamy Italian Orzo"

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Orzo is a small Italian pasta that looks very much like rice and is usually prepared similar to a risotto. This pasta dish is both simple and quick, fabulously creamy, and has a wonderful blend of flavors that will delight, not only the adults, but the kids too... This dish very adaptable. It can be eaten as a side dish, or add some cooked chicken, ham or shrimp for a main course. When available, I like to substitute sauteed fresh asparagus for the peas, and I often add 1/2 cup cremini mushrooms to saute along with the shallot and garlic. I love this dish because I can whip it together in about 30-40 minutes, and it's made with things that I usually have readily at hand. It makes a last minute supper feel like something special rather than an afterthought.

"Tasty...but a little bit trickier to make than I expected. I thought I needed the orzo cooked before I started the veggies. I failed to see that they had to cook 8 min after adding tomatoes. Next time, I'll start both the pot and the pan at the same time. I also had to google how to toast the pine nuts. Great as a vegetarian main dish. I made extra pine nuts for a little more protein. Hope to try with different veggies and cheeses next time."


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1 pound Orzo
8 cups low sodium chicken broth, stock, or water
2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 cup shallot; (2-3 large), finely chopped (or finely chopped onion)
2 large cloves garlic; finely minced
1 14.5-oz can fire-roasted tomatoes; diced, juices drained (I use Muir Glen brand)
1 1/4 cups Heavy cream
1 cup frozen peas; thawed
1 cup Parmesan or Romano cheese; freshly grated, and more to pass
Salt and Black Pepper; freshly ground
4 teaspoons pine nuts; toasted, (optional)

Original recipe makes 8 Servings



In a large heavy saucepan, bring chicken broth or salted water to boil over high heat. Slowly stir in the orzo and cook uncovered, stirring often, until al dente, about 8 minutes. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid.

Heat oil in a large heavy saute pan over medium heat. Add the shallots and saute about 2 minute. Add the garlic and saute another 1-2 minutes, or until mixture is tender and fragrant. Add the tomatoes and cook until tender, about 8-10 minutes. Stir in the cream and peas, and cook, stirring often, until cream just begins to bubble. Add the orzo, tossing to coat. Remove the skillet from the heat and add the cheese to the pasta mixture. Stir until the sauce coats the pasta thickly. If needed, add enough of the reserved cooking liquid to maintain a creamy consistency. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Sprinkle with the toasted pine nuts, if desired. Serve immediately in warmed bowls along with additional cheese to pass.

Yield: 6 to 8 servings.


Do not substitute milk for the cream, it's just not the same. Also, the amount of cream may sound like a lot, but this recipe makes a huge amount of pasta--maybe 12 side dish servings or 8+ main dish servings. The recipe can be easily halved, if desired.


Added on Award Medal
Verified by stevemur


Yum, really good!




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Calories Per Serving: 348 Get detailed nutrition information, including line-by-line nutrition insights?  Try BigOven Pro for Free for 14 days!

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I love this stuff as a side dish I cut it in half there just 2 of us. if I use it as a main dish with shrimp or grilled chicken I make the hole thing. This really makes a lot
strawberryblunt 1 day 6 hours ago

This one's a keeper!! I paired this dish with grilled chicken and green beans. This was my first time cooking with orzo, but everything came out wonderful. My boyfriend loved it and is excited for the leftovers. I may add shrimp next time. Delicious indeed!! leftleftovers! I used regular tomatoes instead of canned.
asohail 3 months ago

Added Shrimp. Very good.
Mitreehouse 8 months ago

yummy! yummy! yummy!
gregspotato79 11 month ago

Take your time cooking tomatoes in with cream... Short cutting this step causes the flavors not to completely meld
dohmama 1 year ago

I wasn't to big a fan of this. I will try making again to see if maybe it was just a bad batch.
tcats6 1 year ago

Very tasty dish.
traceydf 1 year ago

Amazing! Started boiling the water as I started to heat the oil. Came out perfectly on time
RebeccaGriffith 1 year ago

Making tomorrow can't wait never made Orzo before I'm sure we will love it
RebeccaGriffith 1 year ago

Creamy and delicious! My family loved it :)
rachelr0408 2 years ago

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