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What to eat with orzo?

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Chewy texture with a natural taste, orzo cooks like any other types of pasta but looks like rice. However, it does not exhibit a flavor that can be added to soups and salads. 

Plain orzo without any addition is neither delicious nor appealing to the eye. To make it more attractive, unique spices, colors, and tastes need to be included such as meat, vegetables, or cheese will give the orzo a delicious flavor. 

What to eat with orzo? Orzo pasta can be served as a main dish by adding into salad or soups, or it can replace rice to make into a creamy risotto. 

Orzo is a tasteless pasta that can pair well with rich creamy or bold tomato based sauces. Additionally, it pairs well with any side dish including roasted vegetables, cheese, herbs, meat, seafood, and fish. 

Depending on the sides, orzo goes well with a glass of wine. When serving orzo with roasted vegetables, consider Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, and Malbec, and these wines can be used to make sauce to season the pasta dish.

Orzo is classified among pasta as pastina, the category of the tiny shapes often used for soup. It is chewy, but firm at the same time. 

The secret to having good orzo is in its preparation. While cooking, stir orzo occasionally to prevent it from clumping or sticking together. 

So, what should be paired with orzo? This article gives details on what can be paired with orzo to provide a unique, delicious, and memorable experience. 

What pairs well with orzo?

From soups to salads, orzo pairs well with many dishes. However, there are specific ingredients that go well together including fruits, vegetables, nuts, herbs, seafood, fish, and wine.

Here are classic food pairings that goes well with orzo:

  • Fruits: oranges, pineapple, mango, peaches, blueberries, lemon, mango, kiwi, lime, dried cranberries
  • Vegetables: arugula, broccolini, zucchini, cucumber, brussels sprouts, onion, corn, asparagus, snap peas, broccoli, swiss chard, spinach, cauliflower
  • Nuts: pine nuts, walnuts, peanuts
  • Herbs: mint, basil, rosemary
  • Spices: cinnamon, curry powder, smoked paprika
  • Seafood: mussels, clams, squid, shrimp,
  • Fish: sea bass, white fish, cod, halibut, salmon, tilapia, tuna
  • Condiments: maple syrup, vinegar, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, honey, Dijon mustard, tahini
  • Wine: Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Malbec

What meat goes well with orzo?

Most families treasure meat when it is incorporated into a dish. It gives the dish a delicious taste and fulfilling wholesomeness. 

Orzo goes perfectly with beef, chicken, pork, seafood, and lamb meat. The choice of meat to pair with orzo depends on personal preferences and recipe specifics. 

  • Beef: ground beef,  brisket, flank steak
  • Chicken: thighs, breasts, rotisserie
  • Pork: tenderloin, ground pork, mince, pork chop
  • Lamb: stew meat, shoulder, ground lamb
  • Cured meat: ham, sausages

What cheese goes with orzo?

Cheese makes orzo have a thick and creamy taste and consistency. The addition of vegetables on the side gives it a healthier and more colorful appearance.

Cheeses that go well with orzo are:

  • parmesan
  • ricotta
  • feta
  • cheddar
  • gorgonzola
  • pecorino
  • colby jack
  • mozarella
  • gouda

What sauce goes with orzo?

When making a dish or even in salad, orzo needs some sauce to make it flavorful. Generally, it pairs wonderfully with light sauce containing fresh herbs and spices.

Selecting the right sauce when following a recipe makes it spicier and tastier. If you are looking to make orzo pasta with vegetables, here are classic sauce flavor combinations you need to try with orzo pasta:

  • orzo + parmesan cheese + milk + garlic
  • orzo + lemon + butter + parsley 
  • orzo + oregano + feta + tomato sauce
  • orzo + mint + pecorino romano + lemon juice
  • orzo + white wine + cream + mushroom + olive oil

What to serve with orzo?

Making it beautiful and appealing to the eye, orzo can be served with salads, vegetables, soups, meat, and fruits. 

  • Roasted vegetables: Orzo with vegetables on the side makes the dish much healthier. Examples of vegetables served on the side include broccoli, cauliflower, creamy spinach, asparagus, or brussels sprouts.  
  • Soup: This type of pasta pairs excellently with beef, vegetable, and chicken based soups to add chewy texture and more flavor. 
  • Salad: Whether orzo is added to salad or serving an orzo dish with a side of fresh salad, greens are a great way to have healthy balanced diet. From Greek to Mediterranean salads, the salad dressing and mix-in ingredients are the key to success.
  • Roasted meat, seafood, or fish: Roasted steak, shrimp, or salmon makes a perfect addition to add protein to orzo. Simply oven roast your favorite choice of protein with olive oil, salt, and pepper, and you will be ready to enjoy. 
Eat with orzo

Eat with Orzo: Conclusion

Orzo is deliciously paired with a wide variety of preparations. Vary the meat, cheese, vegetables and spices to easily and effortlessly take orzo to the next level in taste and appearance. 

Whether using orzo as soup, salad, or side replacement for a main entrée, consider marinating or seasoning well otherwise the pasta will have a bland taste. 

This pasta looks like rice grains, but has minimal taste and chewy texture that definitely requires sauce or spices to make it enjoyable. Therefore, it pairs well with creamy or tomato based bold sauce to enhance the flavor.

It’s important to include easy melting cheese to give flavor and cheesy texture that goes well with classic sauces.

Don’t forget to pair with a red or white glass of wine on the side based on the sauce and protein selection of the dish.

The next time you have friends over, consider preparing an orzo meal with the classic pairings listed above. 

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