When prepared risotto-style, orzo develops a creamy consistency that rivals the real thing but with far less hands-on time. Here we've paired it with tender pan-seared shrimp and a boldly flavored garlic and lemon sauce to make a delicious entrée that's quick and easy enough for a weeknight meal.Print
Garlicky Lemon Butter Shrimp with Orzo Risotto
Tender pan-seared shrimp, garlicky lemon butter and creamy orzo prepared risotto-style combine to make a delicious main dish that's quick and easy enough for a weeknight meal.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 35 minutes
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: 4 servings
- 1 lb large shrimp, peeled and deveined, tails left on
- 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 cup onion, finely chopped
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 4 cloves garlic, minced, divided
- 1-1/2 cups orzo pasta (about 1/2 lb)
- 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- Juice of 1-1/2 lemons (5 to 6 tablespoons), divided
- 1/3 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- Heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil in a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, season with salt and pepper and sauté until soft and translucent, 6 to 8 minutes. Add 1 teaspoon of the minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds longer.
- Add the dry orzo and stir to coat with the oil. Continue cooking for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Add 3 cups of the chicken broth, stir to combine and cover. Reduce the heat slightly and cook, stirring occasionally, until the broth is absorbed, 5 to 7 minutes.
- Add another 1/2 cup of broth, cover and cook until the liquid is absorbed again. Check for doneness and add the remaining broth 1/4 cup at a time until the the orzo is al dente.
- Stir in 1 tablespoon of the lemon juice along with most of the parsley (reserve a little for garnish). Season to taste with salt and pepper, then remove from the heat and cover to keep warm.
- Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil to a frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the remaining garlic and sauté until fragrant, 1 minute.
- Add the shrimp and continue cooking, stirring constantly, until the shrimp turn pink, 1-1/2 to 2 minutes. Sprinkle with crushed red pepper and add the remaining lemon juice. Continue cooking for about 2 minutes longer or until the shrimp are opaque all the way through.
- Working quickly, divide the orzo between individual serving plates or bowls and, using tongs or a slotted spoon, top each one with a portion of shrimp.
- Return the pan to the stove over high heat and whisk in the butter. Heat just until melted and bubbly, 1 minute. Spoon some of the lemon butter sauce over each portion of shrimp and risotto, being sure to scoop up the garlic bits along with it. Garnish with a sprinkling of parsley and black pepper and serve immediately.