Parmesan and Spinach Orzo

This creamy orzo dish is a wonderful side or light main dish, and it’s sure to be a hit with the entire family!

Parmesan and Spinach Orzo - This creamy orzo dish is a wonderful side or light main dish, and it's sure to be a hit with the entire family!

Orzo is one of my favorite kind of pastas. It may be due to the fact that I grew up on Korean rice my entire childhood, so it’s really no surprise that I would love this pasta in rice-shaped form. And when you couple that with the amazing flavors of the salty Parmesan and fresh spinach in a light cream sauce, what’s not to love?

Parmesan and Spinach Orzo - This creamy orzo dish is a wonderful side or light main dish, and it's sure to be a hit with the entire family!

Parmesan and Spinach Orzo - This creamy orzo dish is a wonderful side or light main dish, and it's sure to be a hit with the entire family!

Parmesan and Spinach Orzo - This creamy orzo dish is a wonderful side or light main dish, and it's sure to be a hit with the entire family!

Parmesan and Spinach Orzo - This creamy orzo dish is a wonderful side or light main dish, and it's sure to be a hit with the entire family!

Now the great thing about this dish is how versatile it is, serving it as either a light main dish or a side dish. We served it alongside the pan roasted lemon chicken, although I may have had this orzo as a main dish instead. After all, when Parmesan and pasta is involved, I have no self control. I just kept telling myself that with the fresh spinach, this was really a salad.

Parmesan and Spinach Orzo - This creamy orzo dish is a wonderful side or light main dish, and it's sure to be a hit with the entire family!

Parmesan and Spinach Orzo

This creamy orzo dish is a wonderful side or light main dish, and it’s sure to be a hit with the entire family!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup orzo pasta
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 cups spinach, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Directions:

  1. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package instructions; drain well.
  2. Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and onion, and cook, stirring frequently, until onions have become translucent, about 2-3 minutes.
  3. Whisk in flour until lightly browned, about 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk, and cook, whisking constantly, until slightly thickened, about 3-4 minutes.
  4. Add spinach and cook until wilted, about 2-3 minutes. Stir in Parmesan until melted, about 1 minute. Add orzo and gently toss to combine; season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  5. Serve immediately.

Adapted from Life as a Strawberry.