Parmesan Portobello Orzo

$5.22 recipe / $0.87 serving
by Beth - Budget Bytes
4.64 from 33 votes
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I’ve been making so many “one pot” recipes lately that I feel like it’s been ages since I’ve made a good ol’ side dish. Well, I had a bag of orzo sitting in my pantry and baby portobellos were on sale this week, so I whipped up this incredibly easy Parmesan Portobello Orzo.

A skillet full of Parmesan Portobello Orzo just off the stove top

The flavors this Parmesan Portobello Orzo are simple. Mushrooms, garlic, chicken broth, and parmesan. Oh, and a little salt and pepper, of course. The beauty of keeping flavors simple is that this side dish can be paired with a great number of things. I planned to eat this with some chicken, but it could just as easily go with a beef roast or pork chops. Or, as I’ve mostly been eating it, just by itself!

This is definitely going to be one of my no-brainer go-to side dishes from now on! I can’t wait to see how many variations I can make of this one simple dish.

A spoonful of Parmesan Portobello Orzo with the skillet in the background
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Parmesan Portobello Orzo

4.64 from 33 votes
This super simple and flavorful Parmesan Portobello Orzo will become your next go-to side dish. Ready in 30 minutes, it pairs with chicken, beef, or pork.
Servings 6 1 cup each
Prep 10 minutes
Cook 20 minutes
Total 30 minutes


  • 2 Tbsp olive oil ($0.32)
  • 2 cloves garlic ($0.16)
  • 8 oz baby portobello mushrooms ($2.19)
  • Pinch of salt and pepper ($0.05)
  • 2 cups uncooked orzo ($1.50)
  • 3 cups chicken broth* ($0.45)
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan ($0.55)


  • Rinse the mushrooms and cut them into thick slices. Mince the garlic. Heat the garlic and olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat for one to two minutes, or until the garlic is soft and fragrant. Add the mushrooms, a pinch of salt and freshly cracked pepper, and continue to sauté until the mushrooms have softened and released all of their moisture (5-7 minutes).
  • Add the uncooked orzo and chicken broth to the skillet. Give it a quick stir, place a lid on top, and let the mixture come up to a boil. Once it reaches a boil, give it quick stir again to loosen any pasta from the bottom of the skillet. Replace the lid, turn the heat down to low, and let the pasta simmer on low heat for 10 minutes. Stir once half way through to prevent the pasta from sticking.
  • After ten minutes, test the orzo to make sure it’s tender (if not, replace the lid and let simmer a few minutes more). Stir the contents of the skillet to redistribute any leftover broth (it will continue to absorb into the pasta). Once the broth has absorbed, turn off the heat.
  • Sprinkle the Parmesan over the pasta, stir, and then serve.

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*I use Better Than Bouillon brand chicken base to make my broth.


Serving: 1CupCalories: 214.8kcalCarbohydrates: 30.1gProtein: 7.93gFat: 6.83gSodium: 629.08mgFiber: 1.73g
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Scroll down for the step by step photos!

Front view of the skillet full of Parmesan Portobello Orzo

I added parsley to add color to the photo, but it’s not necessary for the flavor in this dish.

How to Make Parmesan Portobello Orzo – Step by Step Photos

Sliced Portobello Mushroom

I was lucky enough to get these portobellos on sale, but you can sub regular white button mushrooms if portobellos are out of your price range. You’ll need one 8oz. carton.

Sliced Mushrooms

Rinse the mushrooms and then cut them into thick slices. Now, you may have heard the “rule” that you’re never supposed to rinse mushroom, but in a dish like this where they will literally be simmering in liquid, it doesn’t really make a difference. Something like a fresh salad, on the other hand, you’ll want to just wipe them off.

Garlic and Olive Oil in skillet

Mince two cloves of garlic and sauté them in a large skillet with 2 Tbsp olive oil over medium heat for one to two minutes, or until the garlic is soft and fragrant.

Sautéed Mushrooms

Add the mushrooms, a pinch of salt and pepper, and sauté for another five minutes or so, or until the mushrooms have wilted and released all of their moisture. The mushrooms will absorb the oil at first, but once they start heating, they will start giving off moisture, which will collect in the bottom of the skillet. Once that liquid starts evaporating (becoming LESS), you’ll know the mushrooms have given off everything they’re going to give. Ha.

Add Uncooked Orzo

Add two cups of uncooked orzo (about 1 lb.)…

Add Chicken Broth to skillet

And 3 cups of chicken broth. Stir the skillet, then place a lid on top. Let the skillet come up to a boil over medium heat. Give it a quick stir to loosen the pasta from the bottom of the skillet, replace the lid, and turn the heat down to low. Let it simmer on low for about ten minutes, stirring once half way through.

Cooked Orzo with Mushrooms

After ten minutes, test the orzo to see if it’s tender. There may be a little broth still pooling in a couple areas, but if you stir the pasta, it will continue to absorb the leftover broth. Once the broth is absorbed, turn off the heat.

Add Parmesan to orzo

Sprinkle 1/3 cup grated Parmesan over the orzo, give it a stir, then serve! Super easy.

Finished Parmesan Portobello Orzo close up

Yummmmmm. Makes about 6 loosely packed cups of Parmesan Portobello Orzo.

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  1. Delicious. I cooked chicken thighs following the method from the “one pot lemon chicken and orzo” recipe but seasoned them with dried Italian seasoning. Added white onions with the garlic, spinach at the end, and topped with lots of cheese. Super easy to scale down to one serving, literally a perfect meal. I couldn’t ask for anything better. Thank you for the recipe!

  2. I love this recipe! It was the first one pot orzo recipe I made a while back and with the ratios provided I’ve created my own recipes from this one.

  3. Very good! Added a drained can of chickpeas for fiber/protein, used veggie BTB instead bc I was out of chicken, and added lemon juice because I felt it was missing something (perhaps bc of my substitutions). The sauce everything makes is delicious! Also I used regular portobello mushrooms instead of baby and Stelline pasta instead of orzo. Actually idk why I’m reviewing this recipe at all bc I made so many substitutions, but I guess know that it’s a very forgiving, flexible formula 😅😂.

  4. I’ve made this countless times and always loved the end result. Today I tried boiling the mushrooms rather than the standard sauté. So much more umami. Takes longer, but worth the time.

  5. My husband said this was the best pasta I’ve made in awhile and that the sauce is amazing. When I told him there technically was no sauce, it was just the orzo absorbing the broth, he was floored lol
    Needless to say, he’s already asked me to make this again soon :)

  6. Hi everyone, I made this as per recipe, but added baby spinich at the end so it wilted. Will definitely definitely make again. Did not add any meat. Thank you Beth love all of your recipes.

  7. Can you do half of recipe  we are only 2 and that is a lot of orzo. Thanks

  8. I made this today. Drained and added in a can of chickpeas along with the orzo and an extra cup of  veggie broth to make this a more filling vegetarian dish. Super yum!

    1. Thanks for posting this variation! I always check the comments before I make one of these recipes… and your additions were perfect (vegetarian here too).

  9. This was my first time cooking orzo outside of a soup. Great recipe! I subbed with cremini mushrooms and the orzo really soaked up all the flavours. Thanks for sharing!

  10. « First time I’m doing this recipe and boy, I have to do it again. I have to admit though, I put another ingredient in it that wasn’t there, RED ONIONS. And to be honest, I don’t think it change the taste that much, I just felt that it was missing something. It’s a « great » recipe…! »

    1. Last night we added crushed red pepper flakes to the top for the first time, it added a nice pop of flavor!

  11. Yum! This is so good!!! I added diced onion sautéed with the mushrooms and Italian turkey sausage at the end to make it more of a main dish but even without those additions, this is an amazing recipe. Just make sure to keep an eye on the orzo so it doesn’t overcook, mine was done in under 10 minutes. 

  12. I made this today, but I didn’t have orzo so I figured I’d take the risk of a watery mess and added normal pasta. Kinda eyed the stock I put in, but it came out perfect in the end. (I used about 2 cups of pasta and added like 2 1/2 cups of water. Came out delicious.