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Summertime Orzo & Chicken Recipe

Summertime Orzo & Chicken Recipe

This easy-as-can-be main dish is likely to become a summer staple at your house. It’s that good! If you prefer, grill the chicken breasts instead of cooking in a skillet. —Fran MacMillan, West Melbourne, Florida
TOTAL TIME: Prep/Total Time: 30 min. YIELD:4 servings


  • 3/4 cup uncooked orzo pasta
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 medium cucumber, chopped
  • 1 small red onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 cup crumbled reduced-fat feta cheese


  • 1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large skillet coated with cooking spray, cook chicken over medium heat for 6-8 minutes or until no longer pink.
  • 2. In a large bowl, combine the cucumber, onion, parsley and chicken. Drain pasta; stir into chicken mixture. In a small bowl, whisk the lemon juice, oil, salt and pepper. Pour over chicken mixture; toss to coat. Serve warm or cold. Just before serving, sprinkle with cheese. Yield: 4 servings.

Nutritional Facts

1-1/4 cup: 323 calories, 7g fat (2g saturated fat), 65mg cholesterol, 742mg sodium, 33g carbohydrate (4g sugars, 2g fiber), 30g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 3 lean meat, 2 starch, 1 vegetable, 1 fat.

Reviews for Summertime Orzo & Chicken

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scubacas User ID: 5298067 227517
Reviewed Jun. 6, 2015

"Liked this a lot...put it on a wrap for lunch. It does make quite a bit so if you're on your own might want to adjust ingredients to make less."

LuluBelly1211 User ID: 6434631 170711
Reviewed Jul. 30, 2012

"Used pepper jack cheese and extra lemon juice. Spun the dressing in the blender and it was delish. Will make this again and again."

mjlouk User ID: 1712085 184027
Reviewed May. 27, 2011

"I had to replace the feta with mozzarella b/c my DH doesn't like Feta so maybe that's why it didn't have much flavor. It definitely needs to be made a day ahead so the flavors can meld."

jmaguin User ID: 870442 183025
Reviewed Oct. 23, 2010

"Wonderful! This recipe has become one of my family staples. Great as leftovers."

Mommaof3DempseyGirls User ID: 5441227 167432
Reviewed Oct. 15, 2010

"I have made this several times, and with different variations, such as using a different pasta, with or without chicken, doubling or tripling the lemon and oil mixture, adding minced or crushed garlic to the mixture, and using sea salt. It was a hit at a recent potluck and everyone asked for the recipe. It is a wonderful recipe and can be fit to appeal to your own tastes. Very versatile and I highly recommend it to anyone needing something different."

lorischlecht User ID: 1226455 116506
Reviewed Sep. 29, 2010

"This was quick to make and even better than I thought it would be. I cooked the onions with the chicken because I don't like raw onions, and left out the feta. I'll definitely make it again."

milosmommy User ID: 3662215 186271
Reviewed Sep. 28, 2010

"I loved this recipe. I am not a fan of cucumbers so I left them out. It was easy to make and cheap! I will make again. My husband didn't love it though. He thought the onions were a bit overpowering."

lalakerfan User ID: 3573509 106427
Reviewed Sep. 13, 2010

"We made this recipe twice already! The flavor is great and refreshing. We even added asparagus to it the second time and that was a wonderful addition too! The guest we had for dinner the first time we made it was sold on the dish. We recommend it to all our friends whom like to cook, but need an easy recipe that is delish!"

Figerre User ID: 3348465 106425
Reviewed Sep. 8, 2010

"We added green grapes, grape or pear tomatoes and used 4-cheese combination instead of feta"

Figerre User ID: 3348465 100827
Reviewed Sep. 8, 2010

"we make this orzo salad every month - delicious for lunch at work!!"

Mary_1959 User ID: 549472 144850
Reviewed Sep. 7, 2010

"Simple and absolutely delicious. Can't go wrong with this one!"

Songy2 User ID: 618444 183020
Reviewed Aug. 23, 2010

"Delicious. I also tried it with shrimp and it is just as good. A great summer meal!"

ColleenaG User ID: 1190332 100826
Reviewed Aug. 17, 2010

"This was very good. I cooked the chicken in a tablespoon of olive oil...added greek seasoning, garlic and a little sea salt. Came out very flavorful. I will make this one again."

bethanyandtim User ID: 3850184 116499
Reviewed Aug. 6, 2010

"Perfect combo of tastes and textures! The only change I made was to cook my chicken in 1-2 T. of olive oil instead of using cooking spray. Still tasted great as leftovers the next day."

Seminoles User ID: 1412865 186267
Reviewed Aug. 1, 2010

"Great recipe!! I used chicken I'd grilled the night before so that made it even quicker. The flavors go so well together; I'll be coming back to this recipe over and over."

aug2295 User ID: 4631582 167429
Reviewed Aug. 1, 2010

"I used ziti because I didn't have orzo and dried parsley and grilled the chicken as she suggests with a little greek seasoning. It was really easy and delicious."

meganshakes User ID: 4295286 184026
Reviewed Jul. 27, 2010

"This was so yummy! I made it for dinner last night and had it warm, then had it cold for lunch today. Both ways were good. The flavors go together perfectly, and it is a perfect summer meal, nice and light. I used a rotisserie chicken as well, for convenience, and dried parsley. This is a very easy and quick recipe and I am excited to keep making it over and over."

ashell97 User ID: 5293938 184023
Reviewed Jul. 19, 2010

"I'm a novice at cooking and still made this with no trouble! I hate all things lemon and was nervous about the flavor. It complimented the dish and wasn't overpowering. I will make this again and again!"

cwood1972 User ID: 3532919 100825
Reviewed Jul. 19, 2010

"This sounded so wonderful that I made it right away. I doubled the recipe and used the meat from a rotisserie chicken instead of the skinless breasts. A wonderful combination of flavors! You won't regret making this one. Enjoy!"

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Wine Pairings

Light-Bodied White Wine

Enjoy this recipe with a light-bodied white wine such as Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio.