Spring Orzo Risotto


  • 2 1/2 cups vegetarian chicken-flavored broth
  • 2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 3/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • Sea salt & cracked black pepper to taste
  • 1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise & sliced
  • 2 cups uncooked orzo pasta
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1 hard cheese rind
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 bunch fresh asparagus, trimmed & cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Grana Padano cheese
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 medium lemon, zested & juiced

Cooking Instructions

Step 1: Pour vegetarian chicken broth & vegetable broth into a medium saucepan over medium heat; bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to simmer and cover until needed.

Step 2: Melt butter and oil together in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat.  Add onion, pepper flakes, and a pinch of sea salt and pepper.  Cook and stir for about 4 minutes before adding the zucchini and another pinch of sea salt.  Stir and continue to cook for about 3 minutes.  Next, stir in the dry orzo pasta and continue to cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes.

Step 3: Pour in wine, stirring as it bubbles until the rapid bubbling stops.  Pour in hot broth and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat slightly and add cheese rind and 1/2 teaspoon sea salt.  Cook and stir until a good portion of the liquid has been soaked up by the orzo, about 10 minutes.  Stir in asparagus and frozen peas and continue to simmer until nearly all the liquid is gone and the orzo is fully cooked, about 5 minutes.  Remove from heat.

Step 4: Stir in Grana Padano cheese, parsley, lemon zest and juice, and desired amount of cracked pepper.  Remove and discard cheese rind.  Taste and adjust salt and pepper as desired.

Enjoy this orzo risotto from AllRecipes just in time for spring!