Creamy Parmesan Orzo with Chicken and Asparagus


  • 1 lb chicken breast, boneless and skinless (about 3)
  • 3 cups chicken broth, low sodium, or water
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup asparagus, chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 cups orzo, uncooked
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 1 1/2 cups Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 2 tbsp parsley, chopped, for garnish
  • 1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp pepper, or to taste
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 2 tbsp olive oil


  1. Season the chicken breasts with salt, pepper and paprika on both sides.
  2. In a large skillet, heat the 2 tbsp of olive oil over medium-high heat. Sear the chicken for about 5 minutes per side, or until golden brown and cooked through ( the cooking time depends on the thickness of chicken). Transfer the chicken to a warm plate; set aside.
  3. In the same skillet, add the asparagus and sauté for about 3 minutes, just until soften and brown a bit. Transfer to a plate, set aside.
  4. In the same skillet, add the onion and garlic. Sauté for about 3 minutes, until the onion is translucent and the garlic becomes aromatic. Add more olive oil if needed.
  5. Add the orzo to the skillet and sauté, for just one minute, to get it a little toasted. Add the half and half, chicken broth and stir.
  6. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to a medium-low, cover with lid and cook for 10 minutes.
  7. Remove the lid and stir in the Parmesan cheese. Taste for seasoning and adjust with salt and pepper.
  8. Add the asparagus back and stir it in. Slice the chicken into thin slices. Garnish with more Parmesan cheese if preferred, and parsley. Serve warm.

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