one skillet with lemon orzo and chicken topped with burssels sprouts and pine nuts

One Pan Creamy Lemon Orzo with Chicken & Brussels Sprouts

Creamy Lemon Orzo with Chicken & Brussels Sprouts is a one pan dinner that is easy enough for a weeknight but delicious enough for a dinner with company. Creamy orzo is flavored with lemon, parmesan, and chicken broth then topped with chicken thighs, caramelized brussels sprouts, shallots, & pine nuts.
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Keyword lemon orzo, one pan dinner, orzo with chicken
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 4 people
Author Susie


  • ¼ cup pine nuts
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 5-6 boneless skinless chicken thighs about 1 ½ lbs.
  • 1 large shallot sliced into ¼ inch pieces
  • 15-20 brussels sprouts stem end trimmed and sliced into 1/3rds
  • ½ tsp dried basil
  • 2 lemons, zested & juiced divided
  • 3 plump garlic cloves sliced
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 ½ cups dry orzo pasta
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
  • ½ cup fresh grated parmesan cheese



  • Have 3 small plates set to the side, for items that need to be "set aside" during this recipe

Creamy Lemon Orzo with Chicken & Brussels Sprouts

  • In a large skillet (I use a stainless steel pan, can use non-stick too) over medium-low heat, toast the pine nuts. Set aside.
  • Raise the heat to medium and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the empty skillet. Season the chicken thighs lightly with salt & pepper. Add the hot pan and brown for 5 minutes per side. Do not force the chicken up from the pan, it will release when it is ready!
    Set the browned chicken aside.
  • Leave the chicken grease & olive oil in the pan. Add the brussels sprouts & shallots to the pan, sprinkle with a little salt. Saute for 5 minutes over medium heat. Do not mess too much with the veggies, you want them to lightly caramelize.
    Add in 1/2 tsp dried basil & 2 teaspoons lemon zest. Give it a good stir.
    Set the cooked veggies aside.
  • Your pan will be pretty browned and caramelized at this point, that is ok, that is flavor!
  • Add the 3 cups chicken broth to the hot pan, scraping up all of the browned bits. Increase the heat to medium high and add the orzo, garlic, & 1 tsp salt.
    Once the broth begins to boil, lower the heat to medium-low/low. Place the chicken back in the pan and pop the lid on. Set a timer for 10 minutes.
  • Remove the chicken from the pan. There may be some chicken broth left in the pan, that is ok, it is very starchy and will thicken with the next steps.
    Add 2 Tablespoons lemon juice and 1 Tablespoon lemon zest to the orzo, give it a good stir, some pieces of orzo may be stuck to the bottom of the pan, that is ok. Add the 1/4 cup heavy cream, and 1/2 cup parmesan cheese to the pan and stir.
    Remove from the heat.
  • Add the chicken back to the pan, top with the brussels sprouts & shallots, and sprinkle the pine nuts over top.
  • Serve immediately.