Pesto Orzo

Prep 5 min


Cook 25 min


Ready in 30 min

This easy and quick one pot meal is packed with veggies and fresh flavor.


  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) olive oil
  • ½   small onion, chopped
  • ½ tsp (2 mL) salt
  • 1   large or 2 small zucchini, sliced into half-moons
  • 1   red bell pepper, seeded and coarsely chopped
  • 3 cups (750 mL) vegetable broth
  • ½ cup (125 mL) prepared pesto, plus more for topping
  • ½ cup (125 mL) heavy cream or half & half
  • 1 lb (450 g) orzo pasta
  • 4 oz (125 g) low moisture, part-skim mozzarella cheese, cut into small cubes
  • ½ oz (15 g) Parmesan cheese, finely grated (½ cup/125 mL)
  • ½   lemon, zested (optional)


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Heat the oil in the 5-Qt (4.7-L) Brilliance Nonstick Saute Pan over medium heat for 2 minutes. Add the onion and salt and cook 3-4 minutes until the onion is softened.
  3. Add the zucchini and bell pepper; cook 4-5 minutes or until the zucchini is lightly browned.
  4. Add the broth, pesto, and cream and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the orzo and return to a boil. Turn off the heat.
  5. Stir in the mozzarella cheese and bake 7-9 minutes until the orzo is cooked and the cheese has melted.
  6. Remove from the oven, top with the Parmesan and more pesto or lemon zest, if you’d like.


  • 6  servings

Nutrients per serving:

U.S. nutrients per serving: Calories 490, Total Fat 17 g, Saturated Fat 5 g, Cholesterol 20 mg, Sodium 760 mg, Carbohydrate 64 g, Fiber 2 g, Sugars 7 g (includes 0 g added sugar), Protein 18 g

Cook's Tips:

You can add diced cooked chicken or shrimp for more protein.

Either jarred or refrigerated pesto will work. For a light and fresh version, use the refrigerated type and for a more comforting dish, use the jarred.

The lemon zest will add a bright, citrusy kick at the end, but if you don’t like lemon it will be great without

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