Ask Niki: Orzo

Q. “Can you please tell me what orzo is and how to cook it? I have seen it in recipes and I’m keen to try it.”


A. Orzo is a type of small, rice-shaped pasta which cooks quite quickly, making it a useful pantry staple. You can use orzo as you would rice or couscous, and it’s especially good in salads. You cook it just like pasta, in plenty of boiling water. I like to cook it, run it under cold water, and then add tomatoes, olives, rocket leaves, lemon zest and chilli flakes. A dressing of olive oil and lemon juice finishes it off nicely, and a bit of feta crumbled on top makes a nice addition. You can also use orzo in our Perfect pesto capsicum recipe. Risoni is a similar type of pasta and a good substitute for orzo if you can’t find it in your supermarket.

First published: Apr 2009
Last updated: April 5 2017
Last science review: September 28 2016

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