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Creamy Chicken Orzo

June 11, 2024

Just carrots, celery, onions and garlic flavor this soothingly simple, risotto-like creamy chicken orzo recipe. Grab some crusty bread and call dinner DONE.


creamy chicken orzo with carrots, celery, onions and garlic  in  a bowl

Simple, Fast, Cozy.

If you have already-cooked chicken handy—either from a store-bought rotisserie chicken or maybe some poached chicken you cooked as part of your weekend meal prep—this one-pot creamy chicken orzo comes together insanely fast. Like, 20 minutes fast. Even if you need to cook some chicken—we recommend a quick poach—our risotto-y chicken and orzo is still relatively quick to make. Basic veggies, a little garlic and a hint of creaminess make this one-bowl supper comforting and familiar — just like another creamy chicken classic, Chicken A La King — in the very best way.

Ingredients for Creamy Chicken Orzo carrots, celery, onions, garlic

What Is Orzo?

If you’re asking yourself “is orzo rice or pasta?” you’re not alone! Orzo does look a lot like rice, but actually orzo is pasta! Just like all of the other classic Italian pasta shapes that we love, it’s made from semolina flour—although you can find some whole wheat varieties on the market now. Our savory, chicken-y creamy orzo treats the pasta a bit like risotto rice, letting it absorb the gently flavored chicken broth over the course of a quick simmer. However, since orzo is a pasta, it’s even more forgiving than risotto—in other words, it’s easier! Yay for that.

carrots, celery, onions in a soup pot
carrots, onion, celery, chicken stock and orzo in a soup pot
shredded chicken, chicken stock, carrots, onion and celery in a soup pot with a wooden spoon
creamy orzo chicken casserole

8 Ingredients Are All It Takes to Make the Best Orzo Ever.

OK, so it’s just eight ingredients if you give us olive oil, salt and pepper, but those are a given, right? You can’t make anything without oil, salt and pepper. Here’s what you’ll need to make this easy, creamy chicken orzo:

  • Onion
  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Garlic
  • Chicken stock
  • Cooked chicken.
  • Orzo
  • Parsley
creamy orzo chicken in a soup pot

How To Cook Orzo

You may have had orzo in summery pasta salads—in the U.S. that seems to be the prevalent way of preparing it. But in our opinion, you haven’t experiences orzo pasta’s full, flavorful potential until you’ve simmered it in chicken stock until it’s all silky and chicken-y and risotto-like. Here’s how to make the very best orzo ever:

  1. Onions, carrots, celery. Sauté until fragrant and translucent. Add the garlic after a few minutes of sautéing (you don’t want to overcook or brown it.)
  2. Stock! Pour it in and bring it to a boil.
  3. Orzo and chicken! Add them both, and simmer until the orzo is totally cooked through, and most of the stock has been absorbed by the orzo. Serve!
chicken orzo pasta in a soup pot
close up of creamy orzo soup

Tools You’ll Need:

3 Creamy, One-Pan Pasta Recipes

Cheesy, savory, carb-y comfort. And these recipes are easy, too! Pasta—it’s what you really want for dinner.

creamy Chicken Orzo Soup with carrots and celery in a bowl with a linen

When In Doubt—Chicken Orzo.

In the middle of winter, nothing hits the spot quite like something so wholesome, healthy and cozy as a bowl of this soothing chicken orzo. We hope this easy, creamy orzo recipe hits the spot for you, too. If it does, let us know! Snap a photo of your orzo, and maybe even a video of the beautiful people you share it with. Tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper. Happy eating!

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Creamy Chicken Orzo

  • Serves: 6
  • Prep Time:  15 min
  • Cook Time:  35 min
  • Calories: 326


  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1/3-inch pieces (about 1 cup)
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 8 cups chicken stock
  • 2-3 cups shredded cooked chicken
  • 1 pound orzo
  • 1 tablespoon minced flat leaf parsley
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, plus more to taste
  • 1¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium. Once the oil is glistening, add the onion, celery, carrots and ½ teaspoon of the salt and cook until the onion is translucent, about 7 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, 1-2 minutes longer.

  2. Add the chicken stock, increase the heat to high, and bring to a boil.

  3. Once the stock is boiling, stir in the chicken and orzo. Reduce the heat to medium and add the parsley, remaining 1 teaspoon salt, garlic powder, Italian seasoning and pepper.

  4. Simmer until the veggies are tender, the orzo is creamy and most of the liquid has been absorbed, about 20 minutes.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories326
  • Protein24 g
  • Carbohydrates44 g
  • Total Fat7 g
  • Dietary Fiber3 g
  • Cholesterol0 mg
  • sodium211 mg
  • Total Sugars8 g

Creamy Chicken Orzo

Questions & Reviews

Join the discussion below.

  • Scott

    What about adding a can of cream of chicken soup?

    We wouldn't recommend this but it doesn't mean you can't try.

  • Becc

    Shouldn't this have cream in it if it is creamy?

    Hi Becc, the starch/gluten is what gives it a creamy texture.

  • Holly

    What kind of pasta do we use and how much?

    1 pound of orzo. Hope you enjoY!

  • Valerie

    Do you cover the pot after you put the orzo and chicken in?

    No need! Hope you enjoy!

  • Laurie

    Do I put cover on while it is simmering?

    No need to cover, hope you enjoy Laurie!

  • Ana

    Just wanted to let you know the recipe is perfect !

    The orzo was creamy, it reminded me of the texture you’d find in risotto or pasta carbonara, made the Italian way which means, no added cream!
    I cooked the chicken in stock with a bay leaf and Italian herbs and it was still moist after the second cook.

    The only thing I might try next time
    is add a bit of white wine :)

    Thanks Ana, we are so glad you loved it!

  • Ramon

    So easy yet so much flavor!
    The last batch I grilled up some greek halloumi cheese and tossed that into the dish right at the end. I might sprinkle some feta next time! Great recipe!

    Thanks Ramon, we are so happy you loved it!

  • Sarah

    This is AMAZING! I've made it over 5 times now and every time it just blows me away. It's great for meal prep for 3 straight days!

    Thanks Sarah, wea re so glad you love it and keep coming back to it!

  • Nonna

    This was very very very good. I did add spinach to it and a sprinkle of Parmesan/Reggiano as well. Next time I would double the carrots and celery, and add spinach, and artichokes. I took some to work to share with a colleague and she also loved it. This is a GREAT comfort recipe food recipe and I can see Littles eating it right up!

    Thanks Nonna, we are so glad you loved it!

  • Michele

    This is amazing! We make this at least 1-2x a month as it is so good especially in the winter months! We had a bit of half and half at the end for extra creaminess! We also add mushrooms if we have them!

    Thanks MIchele, we are so glad you loved it!