I love orzo! I much rather have orzo than rice any day!
Since orzo is so quick-cooking, it’s a perfect choice for a one-pot dinner. It cooks up fast in a simmering pot of broth and milk, and the starch from the pasta actually helps to thicken the creamy sauce.
There’s little work required, besides stirring in a few big handfuls of baby spinach and plenty of grated Parmesan cheese. This orzo is an amazing blank-canvas recipe, it’s easy to tweak, you can add cherry tomatoes, peppers, or even shredded chicken. Seriously the possibilities are endless! Get creative!
You can serve this creamy orzo as either a light main dish or a side dish. We served it alongside my Lemon Parmesan Chicken but totally could have eaten it as the main dish- it’s that good!
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small yellow onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 pound dried orzo pasta (about 2 1/2 cups)
- 2 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
- 2 cups whole milk
- 2 cups packed baby spinach, coarsely chopped
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
- Freshly ground black pepper
Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven or pot over medium-high heat until shimmering.
Add the onion and sauté until softened and fragrant, about 3 minutes.
Add the garlic and orzo, season with salt and pepper, and sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute.
Stir in the broth and milk and bring to a boil.
Cover, reduce to a simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the orzo is al dente and most of the liquid is absorbed and has formed a creamy sauce, about 10 minutes.
(If the orzo isn’t completely, you can add another splash or two of broth to the pot and continue to simmer until it has.)
Stir in the spinach and Parmesan until the spinach has just wilted and the cheese melts, about 1 minute.
Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed. Garnish with additional cheese.