Creamy Garlic Parmesan Orzo


If you are in the mood for something creamy (but not too creamy), soft, luscious and garlicy then this Creamy Garlic Parmesan Orzo recipe is going to tickle you silly.

Orzo has fast become one of our favorite side dishes in our house.  It’s super cheap, super easy to make and is just about the best comfort food around besides mashed potatoes.

Orzo is a little pasta that is shaped like rice and can be used in soups, stews, casseroles or a delicious side dish.  It starts out small but plumps up as it cooks and becomes al dente.

creamy garlic parmesan orzoThis Orzo recipe is a little different than our very popular Lemon Orzo with Asparagus.   That recipe has a very SPRING type feeling with the lemon and the asparagus.

This recipe does not contain any lemon and the garlic has been ramped UP.  There is a little half and half in there to help the parmesan cheese melt down and get all goey.  And then it all gets poured over the cooked orzo.

It is simply ……. DIVINE !!!

To make this a 15 minute side dish cook the orzo in a large skillet on one burner and while that is simmering away, make the sauce next to it in a large saucepan.  Once the orzo is done all you have to do is pour the sauce over it and you, my friend, have just made Creamy Garlic Parmesan Orzo 🙂

To make this a complete meal for vegetarians, toss in your favorite roasted vegetables like asparagus, zucchini, red peppers.


Creamy Garlic Parmesan Orzo

Blue plate filled with creamy garlic orzo happilyunprocessed


  • 2 Cups Organic Orzo
  • 2 Cups Organic Chicken or Vegetable stock, or water
  • 4 Tablespoons Organic Butter
  • 1/4 Cup Organic Onion, diced very small
  • 3 Organic Garlic Cloves, pressed or minced
  • 3/4 Cup Grated Organic Parmesan Cheese
  • 1/3 Cup Organic Half and Half
  • 23 Tbsp. Chopped Organic Parsley or Basil (or 1 teaspoon dried)
  • 1/21 tsp. salt
  • Black pepper to taste
  • Olive Oil



  1. Begin by heating about 1-2 Tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet, let it warm up for about a minute. Add the orzo and lightly stir it around the pan so it toasts, this will give the orzo a nutty flavor. When the orzo starts to turn golden in color, add the broth or water starting with just 1/2 cup. Let the orzo absorb the liquid entirely, then add the rest. Give it a stir, bring to a quick boil and turn the heat down to a simmer. Cover and let it cook for 10-15 minutes.


  1. Add the butter to a large saucepan over medium heat. Once it’s melted add the chopped onion and garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Let that simmer for about 2-3 minutes until it softens. Add the half and half, cheese and parsley (or basil). Season again with salt and pepper. Taste and adjust.
  2. Add the creamy garlic sauce to the cooked orzo and stir. Serve warm.

Recipe Source:
I used all organic ingredients when possible when making this recipe, and I hope you do too! 🙂

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


  1. Anonymous says:

    Just made this tonight as a side dish. It was very good!

  2. Stephanie says:

    Absolutely delicious! A staple in my home!!

  3. This was a hit, kids loved it, i didnt have enough parm. So used half asigo to make 3/4 cup. Delish. I used shallot in place of onion.. served with roasted chicken and mushrooms. Wonderful

  4. Made this for Christmas dinner sooo good . Family loved it !!!

  5. Keith Crossley says:

    Terrific results! But a few challenges:

    The 1:1 ratio of orzo to liquid surprised me (since rice is 1:2). And it turned out, for me, that 1:2 was closer (I kept adding). Perhaps ‘cos I was using gluten-free orzo (Delallo). That said, the toastiness was wonderful!

    There didn’t seem to be enough sauce for the amount of orzo… I added more cream.. should have added broth as much as cream! Not that there was a downside in taste to this, but it made it *really* rich!

    Other than that, just brilliant! A Keeper!

  6. Do you have the nutrition information for this recipe? Thanks.

  7. Alexandra S. says:

    It was delicious! However i substituted the orzo for rice and it came out delicious. Only suggest more salt in the recipe as it had little taste. I also added half a lime and it made the flavor really pop.

  8. Would this recipe be able to be made a day or two ahead and reheated for buffet. If so what adjustments should be made?

    • absolutely! I reheat it all the time. Just add a little milk to it and pop it in the microwave at 50% power for a few minutes stirring it in between.

  9. I just made this for dinner this evening and it was delicious. I made it exactly as written, but added one Knorr cube to the water. My husband insists he hates pasta but he sure loved this! Thanks for a great recipe.

  10. I’ve just finished making this as a side dish to chicken. Gotta say, it was very quick and easy to put together, and very tasty too. Even my husband enjoyed it and he doesnt care too much for pasta. Definitely a keeper.

  11. I’ve just finished making this as a side dish. Gotta say it was very easy to put together, and is very yummy. Even my husband thought it was tasty and he doesn’t care too much for pasta.

  12. Kathy Bercowetz says:

    So delicious and easy to make. I did add about 1 cup of frozen peas to add some color! Delicious!

  13. Had really good flavor but mine wasn’t very creamy! Seemed like the sauce soaked right into the orzo. Definitely didn’t look as creamy as your picture. Added all the right amounts so wondering what I did wrong?

  14. Amyee Tripoli says:

    Just made this…simple and it tastes wonderful! ❤

  15. This recipe is simple and excellent. We made it to go with salmon and sautéed spinach for New Years dinner and it was perfect. We used 2% milk since we didn’t have cream, and it came out fine. If this serves four they must be big eaters… we had two big servings and still have plenty left… enough for four. This recipe is a keeper.

  16. Do you drain the orzo or is all the liquid absorbed?

  17. Can I use rice instead of Orzo? Thanks!

  18. haley barnett says:

    How many servings does this recipe make?

  19. This looks amazing. I am wondering if i could use cashew milk instead of the half and half, what are your thoughts?

    • I have never used cashew milk Kristina to be honest. Is it the same thickness of half and half? I’d go ahead and give it a try and please let us know if it worked for you. I’m sure there are other readers who would be interested as well. Good luck!

  20. Great recipe and flavor, however mine came out a bit dry. I checked the recipe three times and did everything exactly right..but the sauce separated. So I added a little more half and half. Per haps the stock addition would be best. Thank you!

    • Whenever you have a separation of the cream it’s usually due to the cream being cold. Next time try heating the cream in the micro or bringing it to room temp before adding it. Also if you fear it will happen again, try taking the pan off the heat whenever adding cream to a hot skillet. I hope these tips help!

  21. We really enjoyed the flavor of this dish but found it a bit oily. Next time I may not use oil when toasting the orzo and cut back on the butter a bit. In addition I may increase the stock a bit to balance it. Loved the flavor! Thanks!

  22. For some reason I’m unable
    To view the recipe

    • I’m really starting to get worried b/c a LOT of you are telling me recipes are missing but when I go to the page it’s right there. I’m not sure what it happening !!!

  23. Is it necessary to use all organic ingredients…… I am not an “organic” person…….

    • Hi Roxanne, while I cannot force anyone to buy or cook with organic foods I would suggest that you research the chemicals and pesticides that are not only sprayed ON foods, but (more importantly IMO) we need to pay attention to what is IN the food. In other words if you consume dairy or meat HOW are the animals fed? Because what THEY eat YOU eat so if it’s full of GMOs or corn and the animals are confined in a factory farm we as consumers are eating that as well. I do not eat organic simply to follow a trend or half heartedly believe in it. I am fully committed to putting my money into smaller organic farms who treat their animals with respect and feed them well instead of factory farming where money is their only concern and motivation. Thanks for your comment. 🙂

  24. HOLY SMOKES ! are you kidding me, this is DELICIOUS. I thought it was going to be really creamy, which I didn’t want, but it wasn’t. it has the PERFECT amount. I will be making this all the time. It was so easy to make I looked like a professional …. lol

Speak Your Mind