This soup is unbelievably delicious. I love that it is dairy free and loaded with vegetables, but the stars of the show are the orzo and the lemon. These two make a beautiful pair, whether you’re making this creamy orzo skillet or a comforting winter soup. Below I’ve shared a few tips on these two superstars. Once you get the hang of them, I guarantee you’ll be using them on a weekly (or daily) basis!
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Ah, the Instant Pot. My magic kitchen machine! The Instant Pot/Electric Pressure Cooker makes short work of both the chicken for this orzo chicken soup and the soup itself. Read through the recipe thoroughly, though, as tempering the egg is an important part of this dairy-free soup’s success.
Helpful Tips for Cooking with Orzo and Lemon
What if this Orzo Chicken Soup is a little too “lemon-y” for me?
If that’s the case, I’d eliminate the lemon zest, rather than the lemon juice. Lemon zest packs a stronger punch than simply the juice, which is why I love it so much! Read on to learn more about the benefits of “Zesting!”
What’s the best way to zest a lemon?
Run…don’t walk, and get yo-self a Microplane zester! This tool makes zesting fun and easy, so you won’t be tempted to skip the zest in any recipe.
What’s so great about citrus zest, anyway?
Citrus zest is is a powerful ingredient that’s also sugar, fat, and calorie free. Just a small amount of citrus zest added to any recipe will brighten and heighten the ingredient combination.
What is orzo pasta?
Orzo pasta is a flat, rice-shaped pasta that cooks quickly and is delicious in soup, salads, or served just as a pasta side dish. Orzo loves to soak up moisture, so as this soup sets, you may have to add more broth.
Printable Recipe for Orzo Chicken Soup with Lemon and Vegetables:
Orzo Chicken Soup with Lemon and Vegetables
Soup that’s made for slurping....it’s THAT good. This Lemon Orzo Chicken Soup cooks in just 4 minutes in the Instant Pot so it makes a super speedy meal for my family. And though there’s no dairy in this soup, it’s creamy and comforting. #Chickensoup #orzo #pasta #Speedymeal #soup
- 1 Tbs. olive oil
- 1-2 tsp. dried dill
- 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
- 1 cup orzo pasta sometimes I use whole wheat orzo pasta, or even go half and half!
- 2-3 ribs celery diced
- 2 large carrots diced
- 1 small yellow onion diced
- 3-4 cloves garlic crushed
- 8 cups chicken broth
- 3-4 boneless skinless chicken thighs, cooked and chopped (2-3 cups of cooked, chopped chicken of any type works great)
- 3 eggs
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 1-2 cups chopped or torn fresh baby spinach or baby kale
- kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Using the sauté setting on your Instant Pot (or any electric pressure cooker), add the oil to the pot. When the oil is hot, add the spices, orzo, celery, carrots, onion, mushrooms, and garlic; sauté for one minute, then add the chicken broth to the pot and bring to a full boil.
Once the soup Lock the IP lid into place, then use the manual button to choose High Pressure for 4 minutes, bringing the IP to full pressure. When the timer sounds, perform a quick release to remove all pressure from the IP. Turn off the IP and remove the inner pot to rest on a cooling rack. Let the soup cool down for 30 minutes, stirring often to speed up the cooling.
Meanwhile, whisk the eggs, lemon juice, and lemon zest together in a bowl. Once the soup has cooled down, stir in the egg/lemon mixture, along with the cooked chicken and fresh spinach. (If the soup is too hot when you add the egg/lemon mixture, it will cook your eggs and you’ll have a scrambled egg soup....ewwww.)
Season soup to taste with salt and pepper, then return the inner pot to the IP, using the sauté setting once again to heat the soup to the desired serving temperature. Serve at once with good, crusty bread.
If soup is too "lemon-y", eliminate the lemon zest rather than the lemon juice. It has a stronger flavor.
Chef Alli’s BEST EVER Instant Pot Soups:
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Let’s Get You Cookin’,
Recipe shared to The Country Cook Weekend Potluck