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.
This 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.
- 2 Cups Orzo
- 2 Cups Chicken or Vegetable stock, or water
- 4 Tablespoons Butter
- ¼ Cup Onion, diced very small
- 3 Garlic Cloves, pressed or minced
- ¾ Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
- 1 /3 Cup Half and Half
- 2–3 Tbsp. Chopped Parsley or Basil (or 1 teaspoon dried)
- ½ – 1 tsp. salt
- Black pepper to taste
- Olive Oil
TO MAKE THE ORZO:
- 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 ½ 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.
TO MAKE THE SAUCE:
- 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.
- Add the creamy garlic sauce to the cooked orzo and stir. Serve warm.