Looking for healthy meal prep inspiration? Look no further! This Greek Orzo Skillet is a high-protein, high-fiber, veggie-filled meal that comes together quickly and tastes even better the next day. Tender chicken, canned chickpeas, orzo, diced veggies, and tangy feta combine to create an incredible dish that will transport your taste buds to an island of Greece!
This post was created in partnership with the Northern Pulse Growers Association.
Recipe Highlights: Greek Orzo Skillet With Chicken
Here are a few reasons why this Mediterranean-inspired skillet dinner is a weeknight favorite for our families:
- It requires minimal prep time, has a quick cook time, and a total time of less than an hour
- It’s full of nutritious ingredients like chickpeas, which contribute fiber (8 grams per serving!) as well as plant-based protein and calcium
- This dish is a good source of heart-healthy polyunsaturated fat and monounsaturated fat
- You can enjoy it as a filling main course or a side dish (perfect for potlucks!)
- You can easily add in or substitute ingredients to suit your needs
- Leftovers are great! In fact, we think it tastes even better the next day
Ingredients To Make This Greek Orzo Recipe
- Olive oil – may sub avocado oil
- Boneless, skinless chicken breasts – may substitute chicken thighs
- Veggies – you’ll need zucchini, bell pepper, garlic cloves, grape or cherry tomatoes, artichoke hearts, and fresh spinach
- Herbs and spices – salt, black pepper, dried oregano, dried thyme, dried basil, smoked paprika, dried dill; may add in red pepper flakes for a touch of heat
- Orzo pasta – may sub rice or cauliflower rice for a grain-free or low-carb version
- Chicken broth – we use low-sodium broth
- Chickpeas – use canned chickpeas (garbanzo beans) for convenience, and rinse and drain them well before adding them to the rest of the ingredients
- Lemon – you’ll use lemon zest in the skillet and also serve lemon wedges for squeezing fresh lemon juice over the bowls to add brightness and acidity
- Kalamata olives – these add a briny taste that contributes authentic Greek flavor to the salad, may substitute green or black olives
- Feta cheese – feel free to substitute parmesan, dairy-free cheese, or omit it completely for a vegan option
Find the ingredient list with exact measurements in the recipe card below.
How To Make A Greek Orzo Skillet
Here are the quick steps to make this stovetop dinner tonight:
- Saute the chicken: Cook the chicken pieces in hot olive oil in the pan until almost cooked through. Remove the chicken and cover it with foil or a plate to keep it warm.
- Cook the veggies: Add the zucchini, onions, and peppers to the skillet. Then add the garlic and seasonings.
- Add the rest: Next, stir in the orzo, chicken broth, chickpeas, tomatoes, and artichoke hearts. Bring the mixture to a simmer to cook orzo. Stir again, and scrape any orzo from the bottom of the skillet. Cover and cook until the orzo is tender, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
- Add the cooked chicken: Add the cooked chicken back to the skillet along with the spinach and lemon juice. Replace the lid and allow the spinach to cook until wilted.
- Garnish and serve: Remove the skillet from the heat and sprinkle the olives, feta cheese, and fresh parsley on top.
For serving size and the complete directions, ingredient amounts, and nutrition information scroll down to the recipe card below. All of our recipes include the nutrition analysis, listing calories (kcals), protein, carbohydrates, fiber, sugar, sodium, cholesterol, and more per serving.
We recommend serving this Greek Orzo Salad as a main dish in a large bowl similar to how you’d serve a main-dish pasta salad. Top it with fresh parsley and fresh dill sprigs or any fresh herbs of choice such as fresh basil, lemon wedges, and a dollop of Homemade Tzatziki.
Or, you could omit the chicken, and enjoy this recipe as a side dish or salad recipe to complement Greek-inspired main courses, such as Greek Chicken Kebabs, Greek Chicken Meatballs, or Instant Pot Shredded Chicken.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, feel free to use any other pasta shape or type that you like best, and cook it to al dente according to the package instructions.
When stored in an airtight container, leftovers will stay fresh in the fridge for up to five days.
Orzo is a type of pasta common in Italian cuisine. Thin and oval-shaped, it has an appearance similar to rice but is made from semolina flour.
No, orzo is typically made from semolina flour, which contains gluten. If needed, you can substitute the orzo for gluten free orzo or your favorite gluten free pasta.
- Cooking spray
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 ½ lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
- Fine salt and black pepper
- 1 medium zucchini, diced
- ½ medium yellow onion, diced (1 cup)
- 1 small bell pepper, any color, diced (1 cup)
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon dried dill
- 1 cup uncooked orzo pasta (use gluten-free orzo, if needed)
- 1 ⅔ cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes
- 1 (14-ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained and quartered
- 1 (5-ounce) bag baby spinach
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- ⅓ cup kalamata olives, sliced
- ½ cup crumbled feta cheese
- Optional for serving: Chopped fresh parsley, lemon wedges or slices, fresh dill, tzatziki sauce
- Place a large heavy-bottomed skillet with lid over medium-high heat. Spray skillet with cooking spray. When the skillet is hot, add olive oil and swirl to coat.
- Add the chicken to the pan and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook for 6-7 minutes or until chicken is almost cooked through, stirring occasionally.
- Remove chicken from the pan to a plate and shallow bowl and cover with foil or a plate to keep warm.
- Reduce the heat to medium and spray the skillet with cooking spray.
- Add the zucchini, onions and peppers to the skillet. Stir and cook for 5 minutes or until the onions start to soften, stirring occasionally.
- Add the garlic, oregano, thyme, basil, smoked paprika, and dill. Cook for an additional minute or until the garlic and spices are fragrant, stirring frequently.
- Add the orzo, chicken broth, chickpeas, tomatoes and artichoke hearts to the skillet. Gently stir and scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
- Increase the heat to medium-high and bring to a simmer. Stir again and scrape any orzo from the bottom of the skillet.
- Place the lid on the skillet and reduce the heat medium-low. Cook for 11-15 minutes or until the orzo is tender, stirring occasionally to prevent the orzo from sticking together and to the bottom of the skillet.
- Remove the lid from the skillet and add the cooked chicken, spinach, and lemon juice to the skillet. Stir gently to combine, replace the lid and allow the spinach to cook until wilted, about 1-2 minutes.
- Remove the skillet from the heat and sprinkle with olives, feta cheese, and fresh parsley. Serve with lemon wedges or slices, tzatziki sauce, and/or pita bread.
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- Serving Size: 1/8 of the recipe
- Calories: 343
- Fat: 12 g
- (Sat Fat: 2 g)
- Sodium: 660 mg
- Carbohydrate: 36 g
- (Fiber: 8 g
- Sugar: 5 g)
- Protein: 28 g
- Cholesterol: 54 mg
The photos in this blog post were taken by Rachel Cook of Half Acre House.
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