Lemon Orzo with Asparagus

Lemon Orzo with Asparagus

Lemon Orzo with Asparagus

This Lemon Orzo with Asparagus is a simple, yet elegant dish that can be served as a side dish or starter or healthy lunch option.

lemon orzo and asparagus in a bowl garnished with a lemon slice
This Lemon Orzo with Asparagus is an easy and healthy dish that I just simply love, it’s so fresh and delicious. Its bright colours encompass the brightness of flavor in this dish from the zesty homemade lemon vinaigrette.

Not to mention, the soft orzo paired with the crunchy asparagus – the perfect combination of flavors and texture! This orzo dish is an ideal option if you’re looking for a quick, healthy recipe that can be added as a side to your dinner or served as is for a great snack or lunch option.

Ingredients

FOR THE DRESSING
Lemon – Juice and Zest.
Garlic – Fresh is best! Minced.
Salt and Pepper – To taste.
Olive Oil – You Can substitute sunflower oil, vegetable oil, safflower oil or avocado oil.
lemon garlic vinaigrette in a bowl
FOR THE ORZO
Asparagus – Cleaned.
Chicken Broth – I used low sodium.
Water
Salt – To Taste
Turmeric – For added flavor and colour!
Orzo – Dry orzo pasta
Parsley – Fresh, chopped – For garnish.
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LEARN MORE
What is orzo?
If you’ve never cooked with orzo before, it’s actually an Italian dried pasta! Orzo is made from white flour or whole grain and is used in some dishes in place of pasta or rice. An interesting fact, orzo in Italian means “barley,” this is why each piece of orzo is in the shape of an unprocessed grain of barley.

a picture of asparagus and one of orzo in a measuring cup
How to make lemon orzo with asparagus
DRESSING
Combine Ingredients – Place the lemon zest, juice, garlic, salt, and pepper in a deep medium bowl.
Add Oil and Whisk – Add oil and whisk until it emulsifies a bit. Set aside.

ORZO
Cook Asparagus – Snap the end pieces off the asparagus and lay the asparagus stalks in a baking dish, 9×13 inch. Pour boiling water over the asparagus (just enough to cover it), cover dish with plastic wrap and let sit until the water is warm to the touch. Drain water and cut the asparagus stalks into 2 inch pieces.
Cook Orzo – Place the chicken broth and water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Add the salt and turmeric and bring back to a boil. Add the orzo and cook until tender, about 10 minutes.
Combine – Drain the orzo, but do not rinse it. Place the hot orzo in a large bowl, add the asparagus and parsley. Whisk the dressing if needed and pour it over the salad. Mix well.
Serve – Top with butter if preferred, serve.
COOKING THE PERFECT ASPARAGUS
I used a whole pound of asparagus for this recipe! A simple method of cooking your asparagus is simply to place it in a baking dish (I used a 9×13 inch baking dish) and pour boiling water over it. Cover it with plastic wrap and let it sit until the water is warm to the touch. A perfect no-fuss method to make perfectly cooked asparagus every time!

How to serve
I love using Orzo! Orzo is very versatile – it can be used in soups, salads, or creamy risotto-like dishes, even casseroles! Perfect to use for stuffing peppers or tomatoes, the possibilities are endless.

I chose to turn mine into a simple side dish by adding the fresh asparagus and the lemony dressing – I then paired it with delicious garlic and paprika chicken drumsticks and I had the most exquisite and healthy dinner! You can eat this lemon orzo with asparagus as a light healthy lunch or snack, it’s even delicious when cold – almost like a pasta salad. This is one healthy and versatile dish!

LEMON ORZO WITH ASPARAGUS

This Lemon Orzo with Asparagus is a simple, yet elegant dish that could be served as a side dish or starter.

INGREDIENTS
For the dressing
▢1 lemon zested
▢2 tablespoon lemon juice
▢3 cloves garlic minced
▢salt and pepper to taste
▢1/4 cup olive oil
For the orzo
▢1 pound asparagus
▢2 cups chicken broth low sodium
▢2 cups water
▢1 teaspoon salt
▢1/4 teaspoon turmeric

▢1 1/2 cup dry orzo pasta
▢1/4 cup fresh Parsley chopped

INSTRUCTIONS
Dressing
Place the lemon zest, juice, garlic, salt, and pepper in a deep medium bowl.
Add oil and whisk until it emulsifies a bit. Set aside.
Orzo
Snap the end pieces off the asparagus and lay the asparagus stalks in a baking dish, 9×13 inch. Pour boiling water over the asparagus (just enough to cover it), cover dish with plastic wrap and let sit until the water is warm to the touch. Drain water and cut the asparagus stalks into 2 inch pieces.
Place the chicken broth and water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Add the salt and turmeric and bring back to a boil. Add the orzo and cook until tender, about 10 minutes.
Drain orzo, but do not rinse it. Place the hot orzo in a large bowl, add the asparagus and parsley. Whisk the dressing if needed and pour it over the salad. Mix well.

Top with butter if preferred.
RECIPE NOTES
Store leftovers in an airtight container – Properly stored, cooked orzo will last for 3 to 5 days in the refrigerator.