Lemon Orzo Chicken Soup
We were working in the yard last week and realized the lemon tree (well more of a giant bush) still had piles and piles of lemons! They are Meyer Lemons and oh so good!
If you’re like us and you have a lemon tree, you’re probably ran out of friends to give them to at this point? 😀 I’ve juiced a bunch and frozen them in four cup jars…. (pickle jars work great) – homemade lemonade is such a treat since our hot summer days are right around the corner. Heck, I’ve even frozen them whole!
I wrapped them carefully in plastic wrap & put them in a ziplock bag and froze them, mostly for the zest and that works pretty good. But one my most favorite uses for lemons is Lemon Orzo Chicken Soup. It is creamy, delicious, lemony and light. It’s a 30 minute low-carb, satisfying soup to serve for an easy lunch or dinner.
I’ve made this several times and it’s amazing how delicious this soup is, easy too – gotta love that! It’s perfect for those end of the season lemons that you don’t know what to do with.
You’ll definitely want to try this soup – even as the weather warms up you can enjoy this soup as it is a quick meal to make and so light and fresh. It’s truly one of our favorites!
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 carrot, chopped
- 1 stalk celery chopped
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest & juice of 1/2 lemon
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 1 cups shredded cooked chicken
- 1/3 to 1/2 cup orzo pasta (dried)*
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 bay leaf
- In a large stockpot heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots, celery – season with salt, pepper (red & black) and add the bay leaf. Sauté until just tender, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic & saute until fragrant, about another 30 seconds. Add the lemon juice, zest, chicken stock. Bring to a boil & add the orzo, stirring occasionally.
- Cook uncovered, stirring constantly – this will release the starch in the soup and help thicken it. Cook until the orzo is just al dente – depending on the brand 6-9 minutes. Remove from heat and add the chicken and cream & heat thru. Remove the bay leaf & adjust seasonings if necessary (may need a bit more salt & pepper). It’s ready to serve!
- * If you like a really thick stew rather than soup, increase the amount of pasta to 1/2 cup.