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Caesar Orzo with Asparagus Recipe

Caesar Orzo with Asparagus Recipe

Looking for something a little different to dress up pasta? This creamy side dish is a favorite with family and friends at Karen Hoyle’s Excelsior, Minnesota home. “My teenage sons love it so much, they’ll eat any vegetable I use!” MAKE IT EASY: Great side dishes don’t come much more versatile than this, says Karen Hoyle. “I’ve also made it with broccoli and creamy Italian dressing or added cooked chicken or ham for a quick bulked-up main dish.”
TOTAL TIME: Prep/Total Time: 25 min. YIELD:12 servings


  • 2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups uncooked orzo pasta
  • 2 pounds fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2/3 cup fat-free creamy Caesar salad dressing
  • 2/3 cup shredded Parmesan cheese


  • 1. In a large saucepan, bring broth and water to a boil. Add orzo; cook and stir for 3 minutes. Add asparagus. Cook, uncovered, over medium heat for 6-8 minutes or until orzo and asparagus are tender, stirring frequently; drain. Stir in salad dressing and cheese; toss to coat. Yield: 12 servings.

Nutritional Facts

2/3 cup: 210 calories, 4g fat (1g saturated fat), 4mg cholesterol, 504mg sodium, 33g carbohydrate (0 sugars, 3g fiber), 9g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 2 starch, 1 vegetable, 1/2 fat.

Reviews for Caesar Orzo with Asparagus

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Reviewed Feb. 8, 2011

"Yuck! This looked so good and smelled good while I was making it but as soon as I opened the "light" caesar dressing it all went downhill. After adding the dressing and parmesan cheese the whole kitchen had a saurkraut smell (disgusting!) It tasted chemically and was not good at all. My husband didn't even want it in the house. I don"t know whether it was the brand of dressing (Ken's) or what but this was disgusting and I will not be trying it again."

Reviewed Mar. 24, 2010

"I have made this recipe several times (with broccoli instead of asparagus) and it is always a big hit. This dish truly shines."

Reviewed Dec. 9, 2009

"This was easy and so delicious. I was surprised how much it resembled a creamy risotto! I had some leftover mushrooms which i lightly sauteed and stirred into the orzo with the cheese. It was a perfect side dish to my broiled fish."

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