Lemon Garlic Orzo with Roasted Vegetables is packed with texture and flavor. Like my Creamy Mushroom Orzo and Creamy One Pot Pasta with Tomato and Mascarpone Sauce, this delicious and easy orzo pasta recipe makes fabulous leftovers! It can be shared warm or as a chilled salad. It’s a Vanilla And Bean community favorite! This recipe is vegetarian and easily vegan. [ See recipe card for step by step VIDEO and full recipe video ]
Orzo with Roasted Vegetables
With spring in bloom, so are our favorite fruits and veggies. I took a drive out to one of the farms yesterday, not only because I’m anxious to get my hands on fresh strawberries but also, the freshest asparagus I can find for this recipe.
Roasted veggies like asparagus shine in this vegetarian orzo recipe. It’s loaded with nutrients that provide digestive support, is anti-inflammatory, promotes heart health, and is packed with antioxidants. It can be eaten raw, sautéed, steamed, or roasted.
If the stalks seem too woody, I use a vegetable peeler to remove the tough outer skin of the stalk. I find, though, the freshest asparagus is pretty tender, so very little of the stem needs to be trimmed. To keep asparagus fresh, I store it with the base of the stems wrapped in a damp paper towel and try to enjoy them within 48 hours of purchasing.
What Else to Pick-up at the Market
Aside from fresh asparagus, stock up on cremini mushrooms, a mix of orange, yellow or red bell peppers, cherry tomatoes, shallots, and fresh herbs and you are ready for this recipe. Zucchini and or eggplant can be substituted for the asparagus when in season.
Related: Summer Pesto Tortellini Salad is a summertime fan favorite!
Quick Guide: How to Make Lemon Orzo and Roasted Vegetables
This orzo pasta recipe is a family favorite and comes together quick after the chopping is done. In summary, here’s how to make it (see recipe card below for details):
- First, roast the red or yellow bell pepper, mushrooms, tomatoes, asparagus and shallot in olive oil using two separate baking sheets lined with parchment paper (start checking your veggies after 25 minutes to ensure the perfect roasting).
- Next, a separate baking sheet, roast the pine nuts or almonds for 6-7 minutes
- While the veggies are roasting and pine nuts are toasting (hehe), cook the orzo in a large skillet.
- Finally, whip up the dressing using olive oil, lemon juice salt & pepper.
Combine everything together, sprinkle with a bit of feta cheese or parmesan cheese and share!
What to Serve with this Veggie Orzo Recipe
Simplicity is key. To keep this orzo pasta recipe vegetarian, all it needs is a good loaf of Sourdough Bread, and a bottle of your favorite wine. To stretch the recipe further and to take this perfectly made Lemon Garlic Orzo with Roasted Vegetables dish to the next level, share it with a kale Caesar salad in addition to that crusty bread and wine. It will be a memorable meal for everyone who enjoys it.
Orzo Pasta Recipe Notes
- Regarding roasting, see recipe notes notes on oven temperatures and roasting times. Also, consider your taste when it comes to roasted veggies. More charring (this is what I like) = more time in the oven. Less charring and tender crisp = less time in the oven. Roast to your taste!
- Dairy Free? Yes Please! This orzo recipe is easily made vegan by omitting the feta.
- Substitute the pine nuts with toasted chopped or slivered almonds or hazelnuts if desired.
- For an Orzo Pasta Salad, share this recipe chilled by placing in a lidded container and chill for at least one hour before sharing.
- Freezer friendly? I do not recommend freezing this recipe.
Thank you all so much for sharing and tagging your 100s of mouthwatering pictures and tips on this recipe on Pinterest, Instagram and in the comments below! I love seeing and hearing your results! Here are some of your notes:
- Barbara said: “I’m not a zucchini fan, so I used eggplant.”
- Laurel said: “We add a can of white beans to protein it up a bit” Be sure to drain the beans prior to adding to the recipe.
- Vanessa said: “I doubled everything and had it for lunch for the week!” and “I threw a couple of big handfuls of spinach on the roasting vegetables for the last 5 min.”
- Joy said: “I used zucchini instead of asparagus & penne pasta instead of orzo.”
- Victoria said: “Used sun dried tomatoes in replace of olives as suggested. Absolutely delicious!”
- Katrina said: “I just used eggplant instead of asparagus and slivered almonds instead of pine nuts.”
More Veggie Pasta Recipes to Love
- Roasted Cauliflower Mac and Cheese
- Lemon Orzo Pasta Salad with Asparagus, Spinach and Feta
- Orecchiette with Garlicky Kale and Breadcrumbs
- Greek Orzo Pasta Salad
Lemon Garlic Orzo with Roasted Vegetables Recipe
For the Orzo and Veggies:
- 1/3 C (64g) Pine Nuts* (see note)
- 1 1/2 C (116g) Crimini Mushrooms destemmed and sliced
- 1 C (126g) Mix of Red Yellow, or Orange Bell Peppers, deseeded and diced (I used baby bells here, but you'll need about 1 whole bell pepper if using the larger variety)
- 1 lb (425g) Asparagus (sub zucchini or eggplant when in season!) cut into 1" pieces with woody ends discarded
- 12 oz (340g) Cherry Tomatoes sliced in 1/2
- 2 tsp Garlic minced
- 1/2 C (116g) Shallot chopped
- 3 Tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil divided
- 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
- 1/2 tsp Black Pepper Ground
- 1 C (200g) Orzo
- 1 1/2 C (355g) Vegetable Broth
- 1/2 C (84g) Garlic and Herb Feta crumbled (Leave off for Vegan Option)
For the Dressing:
- 2 Tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 Tbs Lemon juiced, about 2
- 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
- 1/4 tsp Black Pepper ground
For the Garnish:
- 2-3 Tbs Chopped Fresh Basil
- 2-3 Tbs Chopped Fresh Parsley
Toast the Pine Nuts:
- Preheat oven to 350F (177C) and toast pine nuts for 6-7 minutes, or until toasty and fragrant. Set aside to cool.
Roast the Veggies:
- Turn oven up to 425F (218C). Line two sheet pans with parchment paper. Place the mushrooms, bell peppers, asparagus, tomatoes, garlic and shallot on one pan. Sprinkle with 2 Tbs of olive oil. Using a spatula, mix all the veggies together with the olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper then stir again. Move 1/2 the veggie mixture to the other sheet pan. Spread the veggies in one layer, making sure there's no overlapping on both pans. Roast in a 425F oven for 35-40 minutes (due to oven variations, keep an eye on your veggies and start checking your veggies at 25 minutes; a bit of charring is good!** see notes!). Rotate pans 1/2 way through roasting.
Cook the Orzo:
- In a large saute pan, heat 1 Tbs of Olive Oil on medium heat until shimmering. Add the orzo and stir, coating the orzo thoroughly. Stir occasionally for about 3 minutes or until the orzo is toasty and golden. Add the vegetable broth. Be careful here because the broth will spit and sputter. Bring to a simmer, turn down the heat to low, cover and cook for about 15 minutes or until all the liquid is absorbed. Stir. Remove from heat, cover and set aside.
Make the Dressing:
- In a small bowl add the olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Whisk until all the ingredients are emulsified.
Putting it all Together:
- In the large saute pan, to the orzo, add the roasted veggies and all their juices, stir in the dressing, feta, and pine nuts. Garnish generously with basil and parsley. Serve immediately.
I have made this recipe several times, and each times it is so delicious! The flavors from the roasted vegetables and the dressing have so much flavor! I added some chopped jalapeno because I had it on hand. I will be serving this for a dinner party tonight, along with lime tilapia and roasted cauliflower. Thank you for sharing! I highly recommend!
Super happy to hear you’re enjoying the orzo, Swati! I hope it was a hit at your dinner party! Thank you for your note :D
Loved this dish. Will definitely make again. Would be nice with halloumi or mozzarella too.
Oh my, halloumi or mozzarella sound delish! Thank you for your rating and giving the recipe a go, Suze!
Absolutely delicious! I used green beans instead of asparagus, just because we had asparagus the night before, and baby Bella mushrooms, because my store did not have cremini mushrooms. I got a big thumbs up from my husband!
Hooray! Thank you for coming back and leaving a note, Sue! Those green beans sounds so delightful. Love that thumbs up – it’s a WIN-WIN!
This recipe is my favorite one I’ve found on Pinterest. It’s so delicious and everyone I’ve served it to lives it too. Thank you so much!!
Hiii Kit! I’m so happy to read your note. Thank you for giving the recipe a go!
This was so so good! I didn’t change anything except extra garlic, and it was perfect.
Is the calorie estimate per serving or for the whole dish?
Hooray! Thank you for your note and recipe rating, Emily. I’m on board for extra garlic :D !! The calorie estimate is for one serving.
Honestly one of the best things I’ve ever made! So delicious! Made it as a main course, great for meal prep/lunches, and as a side with a nice piece of salmon! Delicious!!!
Hooray! So happy to read your note, Leah!
This was delicious. I added spinach to mine as well. I can hardly wait to eat the leftovers for lunch tomorrow.
Spinach is SO yum in this! Thank you for your note and giving the recipe a go, Rita.
I never leave reviews on recipes, but this one was so good I had to review it. This was absolutely delicious. I doubled the orzo because I love pasta and I think it turned out to be the perfect ratio. I really have no words for how great this recipe is. I will definitely use this recipe for future get togethers or parties!
Thank you so much for sharing this recipe.
Hiii Hannah! Thank you for your note and giving the recipe a go – doubling the orzo sounds fabulous! So happy to hear you’re enjoying the recipe!
I have just enjoyed a lovely meal of the Garlic Snape Pesto with spaghetti stringy ham and marinated peppers. I topped it with finely grated parmesan and lots of cracked pepper. It was yum and my husband who does not like too much garlic loved it too. Thankyou Traci
Hi Dawn! Thank you for your note and giving the pesto a go! SO happy to hear you and your husband are enjoying the recipe!
This recipe is amazing. You can roast whatever vegetables you choose and it is perfect for a simple dinner or a party! Used herb infused olive oil and fresh Meyer lemon for the dressing. Thank you so much for sharing!
This recipe was so tasty, I did add a little bit of fig balsamic, and that created the perfect touch! I used the jovial GF Orzo, and it also worked great in the recipe!
Hi Cedella! Thank you for your note and sharing your tip. That fig balsamic sounds amazing!
So, so good! I discovered this recipe probably a couple of years ago and it’s been in my regular rotation since!
Hooray! So happy to hear Maddie. Thank you for your note!
I made this and my fiance said it was delicious and he could eat it every day!! This makes me very happy as I never get this kind of response from the dinners I cook 😂
I left out the pine nuts (they were £3/100g! at Asda) so I’ll look at Aldi next time.
Regarding the veg, I checked at 25mins & just about saved them from being burnt to a crisp, so definitely keep a close eye 👀.
I’ll probably use a little less oil on the dressing next time too.
This was the first time I’ve cooked Orzo & was pleasantly surprised. I now prefer it to all other pasta.
Overall very nice!!
Hi Kerry! SO happy to hear of your success! Isn’t orzo so nice? Slivered or blanched almonds are delicious with this recipe too.
I made your dish for a Greek potluck and it was so tasty! I will definitely be making it again. The host just asked me for the recipe to make it for Mother’s Day and I was very happy to share it. Thanks!
SO happy to hear Karin! Thank you for your note and giving the recipe a go. A Greek potluck sounds like so much fun! Thank you for sharing the recipe :D
Delicious! Followed the recipe amounts very carefully (the asparagus was a bit more wooden than expected, so we were a little short there, and our family likes less salt and pepper than most do), and it was excellent. The first time I’ve cooked with orzo or asparagus, and the recipe made it easy.
Great for our meatless Monday dinner. Thank you!
Hi Michael! Thank you for coming back and leaving a note. Hooray for Meatless Monday! SO happy to hear it was a success!
I made this today for my lunch meal prep for the week and I absolutely love it! It is so versatile, I subbed some of the veggies you listed for what I had in the fridge and it was still delicious! Plus I’ve had a box of orzo I had no clue what to do with for forever. I will definitely be making this again!
Hooray Stephanie! Thank you for your note and sharing your notes. Isn’t orzo soooo good?!
This may be one of the best things I’ve ever eaten!!! SOO GOOD!!! I did not have lemon juice, so I used lemon pepper instead and did not add extra olive oil. I will definitely be making this again…and again…and again…
SO happy to hear Jinna! Thank you for your note and tip on lemon pepper – sounds fantastic!
I feel like I did something wrong by how good the comments are. Maybe I don’t like toasted pasta?
Hi – the recipe doesn’t say how much orzo to cook? Please advise!
Hi Cristy! 1 C Orzo (198g). I hope this helps and you enjoy the recipe!
Made this a few months ago and it was great! Very comforting and made with whatever veggies I had in the fridge. Would definitely make again!
Hi Jessica! Thank you for your note and giving the recipe a go! So happy to hear it’ll be on the menu again!
This looks so good! Does it keep long?
Hi Vanessa! For about three days in the fridge. I don’t recommend freezing it. I hope this helps!
This looks so good! What a great healthy and filling combination of flavors!
This dish is incredible! It was a huge hit with the entire family, which rarely happens. Thank you so much, big fan of your blog😊
Hi K! Thank you for your note and giving the recipe a go! SO happy to hear it was a big hit!! (Thank you too for your kind words :D ) …. traci
This was SO good! So simple and a great way to use up extra veggies. My husband was skeptical as he is with most vegetarian dishes but a couple of bites in, he said it was delicious and proceeded to finish the whole thing! Huge win! Thanks for the great recipe, definitely getting added to the rotation.
I don’t know if I’ve ever commented on a recipe, but I had to comment on this one. I made this and skipped out on the pine nuts and basil and substituted zucchini for asparagus. I also used chicken instead of veggie broth. 10/10. So good, so refreshing. I want to eat pounds of this.
Hi Hannah! SO happy to hear your enjoying the recipe! I truly appreciate your note and sharing your subs :D
Love this dish. I doubled the quantities to feed our large family. I used courgettes as suggested and pan fried the rounds as I always feel they cook better that way. As we have a vegan, it was very easy to separate some orzo and add all the other ingredients including vegan feta to finish it off.
I love recipes that can satisfy everyone! Thank you for your note, Mags! Hooray!
Ended up having to turn this into a risotto when I couldn’t find orzo where I live (unsurprisingly, it doesn’t seem to be a lockdown essential) but this was incredible anyway. The roasted veg is so good – even the veg-hating members of my household left a clean plate. Thanks for a great recipe!
Oh hey now… risotto sounds sooo good! Hooray for clean plates!
I’ve been making this recipe for a couple of years. It’s my absolute favorite. I usually crave it weekly a d usually use sunflower seeds instead of pine nuts. Thanks for this recipe. ❤
Thank you for your note Kristy! SO happy to hear… sunflower seeds? What a fabulous idea!
I made these a few weeks ago – fantastic! Made again t0day, but “doubled” the recipe. They are too dry. What did I
HI Colleen! Thank you for your note… Ohh I’m sorry to hear. What was too dry? The orzo, roasted veggies or after you put it all together?
Wow, This was delicious! So much more savory than I was expecting!
SO happy to hear Sara. Thank you for your note!
I’m not sure what happened, but the orzo came out terribly underdone. I used whole wheat orzo, maybe that makes a difference. Check the box of orzo and see if you need more water when making this yourself. Otherwise, it’s very tasty! The flavors are great. I left out the feta and subbed sunflower seeds for pine nuts.
Hi Lauren! So happy to hear you enjoyed the recipe! And, you said it – whole wheat orzo will require more water than regular orzo. Thank you for your note!
This is our new family favorite. We are vegetarians and enjoy roasting whatever veggies we have on hand. So simple and delicious!
SO happy to hear, Nancy! Thank you for your note, rating and giving the recipe a go! Hooray!
Fabulous!! I can’t wait to taste this. It has the best ingredient list and looks so beautiful. Thanks for sharing
Hi Brooke! Thank you for your note! Please keep us posted :D
Sooooo delicious!! I will be making this again! Subbed gluten free chickpea shells for the orzo and the layers of flavor just keep going.
This was sooo good. Made it today with some shrimp for my family.
SO happy to hear Amanda! Thank you so much for your note! :D
I’m always looking for healthier sides and dishes for dinner. I just made this recipe for the first time and it was absolutely delicious. Even the kids loved it! I did add zucchini instead of adding an additional bell pepper. I would definitely make this recipe again.
Woooo! SO happy to hear Jaime! So happy to hear it’s a win-win!
Hi there, sorry if this sounds stupid, but do you boil the orzo pasta before roasting in the pan? I keep thinking if I just throw it in the pan with some olive oil that it will be hard?? Not sure though bc I don’t ever cook with it. This is my first time. Thank you.
Hi Brittney… no worries. The orzo will be hard at first. The purpose of putting it in the pan with a bit of oil is to toast it before you cook it. After it’s toasted, you add the broth. That’s when it will soften. I hope this helps!
Delicious recipe, so full of flavor. I followed the recipe except I eliminated the feta and subbed the zucchini in place of the asparagus. I couldn’t find pine nuts at my local grocery story, so I used almonds as suggested. Both substitutions work wonderfully.
This was a winner, I loved everything about the dish. The leftovers the next day were even better, thanks for the fantastic recipe!
Just made this tonight without the feta, but still so good! Doubled the recipe because I wanted to make sure I had enough for lunches this week and…holy, that’s a lot of food! Very excited to try it cold for lunch tomorrow, and I’m so glad I won’t have to worry about cooking for a few days. Makes eating healthy so much easier.
Hii Terrie! SO happy to hear you’re enjoying the recipe! Hooray for having lunch ready for the next few days! Thank you for coming back and leaving a note ;D
This is my go-to weeknight dinner! I added
Sautéed shrimp for a complete one pan meal!
Love this recipe! It is so versatile!
Hi Helene! Love it! Thank you for your note!
SUCH a great go to meal anytime of year. I love veggies so I used peppers and zucchini! Can’t wait to make it again!!
So happy to hear Missmaj! Thank you for coming back and leaving a note!
My favorite meal to cook! I love how hearty and filling this is; I find it’s good hot or cool, and I added a bit of tahini to the dressing for more richness.
So happy to hear Serena! Thank you for your note! The tahini sounds lovely.
Loved this! I was going to leave off the cheese but decided to use vegan feta instead and so happy I kept it in there! Yum yum yum made mommy,daddy, and baby all happy
Thank you for your note and rating Caitlyn! So happy to hear. Thank you too for your tip on the vegan feta!
SO happy to hear Janet! Thank you for your note and rating!
This took a lot of time to prepare but well worth the effort. I made it hot, not cold. Would definitely make it again. Didn’t use asparagus and subbed 2 large zucchini’s. Delish!
Love the zucchini sub! Thank you for your note and rating Tanis!
Tried this last night and loved it! Used some different veggies. Was wondering if there was something else that could be added to give it more of a spice zing. Not super spicy, but just a little something. So good, but it was a little flat for some reason. Love how healthy it is too!
Hiii Libby! Thank you for coming back, leaving a note and for your rating! So happy to hear you love the recipe! Ooooh yes, I SO get it! How about a pinch of red pepper flakes? That would be delicious! I’d start with 1/4 tsp. Add it to the dressing or stir it into the orzo towards the end of cooking. Adjust up if you need a bit more of a kick!
This is one of our family’s favourite meals! I usually do 1.5 to 2x the orzo and broth so that it’s enough for the four of us. I like to add the lemon zest and I will try it with beans like some others have mentioned. I don’t use the cheese since we are vegan.
Hiii Karinne! Oh my, I love your addition of lemon zest! And yes to beans! Thank you for your note, rating and tips! So happy you’re enjoying the recipe.
when I was toasting the orzo I decided to zest the lemon and add it, and a little garlic, to the orzo just before I added the vegetable stock.
Oh my… the fragrances wafting from that pan! 👌🏻
This dish is SO GOOD and packed full of veggies!! It’s one of my all-time favorite recipes to cook!
Thank you for your note, Maddie and your five star review! I’m SO happy to hear you’re enjoying this veggie packed recipe! :D
Absolutely delish! I’m not a zucchini fan, so I used eggplant and also kept it vegan.
Hi Barbara! Thank you for your note and sharing your eggplant addition! I love it!
Laurel Ann Smith
This is one of our very favorite meals in our fam! We add a can of white beans to protein it up a bit and don’t use mushrooms (just add more of the other veggies). It is SOOOO good, I always make a double batch because I’m ready to eat more the next day 😆
Hi Laurel! Thank you for coming back, leaving a note and your five star review! SO happy to hear and thank you for sharing your tip about the beans! I love it!
Hi Laurel. Just wondering- do you do anything to the beans or just add them to the mix? Sounds like a great way to add some extra nutrients!
Laurel Ann Smith
I don’t do anything but drain and rinse! The flavor of everything else totally covers the beans well enough.