One of our absolute favorite soup recipes! Full of fresh ingredients, filling but still oh-so-light--this simple soup recipe, with all of its lemony goodness, will quickly become a favorite in your home, too!
This lemon, chicken & orzo soup is the PERFECT recipe for transitioning from winter to spring! It's warm and comforting, and yet, it's also light, and the extra touch of lemon is all you need for a bright & sunny spring day!
Orzo is tiny rice-shaped pasta. We love chicken and rice, and we love chicken noodle soup, so orzo pasta with chicken is the perfect bridge between the two. It cooks really fast while rice takes a bit to simmer, and it's so versatile! I used it for this delicious Greek Salmon recipe and to make this Roasted Red Pepper, Zucchini, Tomatoes and Orzo Salad. Yum!! There are many ways to use it, but for today, this Lemon, Chicken & Orzo Soup is the center of attention!
What you'll need
Celery, carrots, and onion - the foundation for many most-loved soup recipes.
Butter - for sautéing vegetables and minced garlic.
Chicken broth - deeper, more flavorful base than water.
Italian seasoning - I use this dried herb blend a ton, and this soup will taste even better if you use a fresh blend made from basil, oregano, rosemary, parsley & thyme.
Salt - the most important seasoning in existence!
Garlic & Garlic Powder - for more savory flavor.
Rotisserie Chicken - easy, already cooked and the shredded texture is the BEST in this soup!
Heavy Cream - makes the broth creamier and gives it that comforting, home-cooked feel.
Lemon juice - gives this soup the brightest, freshest "pop" of flavor without being too overpowering.
Worcestershire - just a splash is all you need! Worcestershire sauce is tangy & sour, sweet & salty, and everything in between--the perfect profile for the yummiest soup.
Orzo Pasta - rice-like pasta that is super simple and super fast to prepare.
Parmesan Cheese - my equivalent to salt or Italian seasoning...basically, I use it in what seems like every recipe. Great for sauces, vegetables and, of course, PASTA, which is why it's a must for this recipe!
Parsley & Lemon Slices - the best garnishes to add a pop of color and a little more flavor.
How to make lemon chicken orzo soup
In a large pot, melt butter over medium heat until sizzling; add celery, carrots, onion and minced garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until fragrant and lightly browned (about 10 minutes).
Add chicken broth, Italian seasoning (fresh mix if you've got the ingredients), 1 teaspoon salt & 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder; bring to a simmer over medium-high heat.
Add uncooked orzo pasta and simmer 12 minutes.
Add heavy cream, lemon juice and Worcestershire sauce; then, add shredded chicken to the soup.
Bring back to a slow simmer; then, remove from heat. Immediately add spinach & parmesan cheese, stirring until well-combined.
Serve with fresh parsley, lemon slices, crusty bread and a side caesar salad, and enjoy!
Helpful tip: you may want to add more chicken broth if you decide to reheat. The orzo pasta will soak up liquid, making the soup thicker.