Monica Buck
Makes 3 or 4 main-dish servings

Tiny, rice-shaped orzo absorbs liquid and flavor much like rice, but unlike traditional risotto, this recipe doesn't need to be stirred obsessively for a perfectly al dente, creamy result.

How to Make It

Step 1

Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a 12-inch frying pan over high heat. Add 12 ounces sliced mushrooms and 3/4 cup chopped shallots or onion; cook, stirring often, until mushrooms are lightly browned, 9 to 12 minutes.

Step 2

Reduce heat to medium and add 2 more tablespoons butter and 2 cups dried orzo pasta; stir often until pasta is light golden, about 2 minutes.

Step 3

Add 3 cups chicken broth and 1/2 cup dry sherry. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat and simmer, stirring often, until pasta is tender to bite and most of the liquid is absorbed, 9 to 11 minutes. If mixture becomes too thick before pasta is done, add a little more broth.

Step 4

Stir in 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Spoon risotto into wide bowls and sprinkle with a little chopped parsley and more parmesan cheese to taste.

Ratings & Reviews


August 03, 2017
Very good. I used dried shiitake mushrooms because that's all I had. I used some of the water from soaking the mushrooms. This is going to be one of my go-to pasta recipes.

Sue94502's Review

April 22, 2010
I would definitely make this again. I used a mixture of cremini and white mushrooms and would add more next time. It needed more broth, so be sure you have at least 4 cups on hand. It reheats much better than rice risotto.

sactom's Review

September 27, 2009
What a quick risotto clone! Delicious and on the table in minutes. The sherry provides a terrific flavor. Delicious as a side dish with schnitzel, with or without the mushrooms.

Wordsetc's Review

August 31, 2010
A great side dish. I halved the recipe and substituted a dry white wine (which I always have!) for the sherry. Used canned beef broth for the liquid. Will make again. Orzo is a quick side dish that adds flavor and distinction to any meal. I served with meatloaf and a salad!

kmcgair's Review

December 01, 2011
This is a family favorite - kids love it too. I also use about twice the mushrooms it calls for. Love it.

SomSharp1's Review

July 08, 2013
Really really excellent! I'm using it as a side dish and this is my first attempt at a orzo/risotto type dish so I am very excited about the outcome. I did take heed and used 4 cups of broth instead of 3 along with the 1/2 cup of dry white wine. I also substituted a tablespoon of the butter with olive oil. I will be making this again.


June 07, 2016
this was good! cut recipe in half.  used portabellos and beef broth.   served with pot roast, was tired of mashed potatoes.   fit in just fine !!!