One pot eggplant parmesan orzo. This one could very well become your new favorite stress-free weeknight dinner. There’s so much to love here! Bright flavors, sweet sun-dried tomatoes, hearty sautéed eggplant and silky parmesan orzo. Quick, easy and so delicious!
It’s a fast dinner made in one pot with incredible flavor. Buttery-tender sautéed eggplant, Parmesan and silky orzo come together in this quick and easy skillet dinner that’s perfectly suited for busy weeknights. Absolutely delicious, especially when paired with sun-dried tomatoes and thyme. You could easily add in some extra vegetables if you want to, or swab tomatoes for roasted peppers. Serve as a main course with a leafy salad, or serve as a side dish with fish or meat.
Let’s get started
As you might guess, this recipe is pretty straightforward and simple. We start by heating olive oil in a skillet, then add the eggplant. When it starts to brown, we sprinkle a little more oil and cook until the eggplant starts to soften. Next, we add all the usual flavor boosters, like shallot, garlic, soy sauce and thyme. For the last one, I used fresh thyme leaves. But you can also use dried thyme.
We add orzo to the skillet, followed by some chicken broth together with tomato paste. We stir well, then add in sun-dried tomatoes and the remaining broth. I like to use sun-dried tomatoes for their sweet taste, but you could also use roasted peppers.
Let it simmer until the orzo is al dente and silky. When ready, we add Parmesan and fresh lemon juice to make this dish really delicious. Super simple yet so much flavor!
You’ll love how easily it comes together.
Let me guide you through the recipe with this step-by-step VIDEO.
What goes in Eggplant Parmesan Orzo
- Orzo: A small cut pasta that tastes heavenly in creamy one pot dishes just like this one. If you’re looking to substitute, try other very small pasta, like orecchiette or tiny macaroni.
- Eggplant: small to medium eggplants are best, so every piece has a bit of skin which helps them hold together when simmering with orzo, rather than turning the eggplant into eggplant purée.
- Sun-dried tomatoes: I love making this with sun-dried tomatoes, because they add a big flavor punch which is right up my alley. So I always have a jar waiting in my fridge. Just a few sun dried tomatoes can make anything so much more delicious.
- Olive oil: For cooking. Oil helps the eggplant to become tender and buttery.
- Shallot: Adds a delicate and sweet flavor with a hint of sharpness. Sub with a smaller onion, like brown or yellow.
- Garlic: Use as much or as little as you like.
- Tomato paste: To create a slightly tomato-sauced-up orzo.
- Soy sauce: I like to add it for a more next-level-flavor, but you can also use salt.
- Chicken broth: We’re using chicken broth, but vegetable broth will work great here too.
- Lemon juice: A real flavor enhancer.
- Parmesan: For a cheesy, savory taste. Best when freshly grated.
- Seasoning: Black pepper and chili flakes.
- Thyme: Finely chopped fresh leaves, but you can also use 1 tsp dried thyme. Fresh basil will also work.
This recipe practically requires that you make it your own!
- Serve as is with a salad, or serve as a side dish with seared shrimp, fish, roasted chicken or pork chops.
- Add some chicken meatballs, Italian sausage, rotisserie chicken, bacon or kalamata olives.
- Add more vegetables like spinach, kale or artichoke hearts.
- Swap sun-dried tomatoes for roasted peppers.
- Vegetarian: Swap chicken broth for vegetable broth.
- Adding grated Parmesan is a worthy way to finish off this one pot dish, but if you’d like to keep this dish vegan or dairy-free, don’t hesitate to leave it out. Even without the cheese, it will be a comforting dinner that you’ll likely want to make over and over again.
- Stir frequently to prevent from sticking: as the orzo cooks, it releases starch, which helps to thicken the sauce. If left undisturbed, it will stick to the bottom of your skillet. To prevent this, stir at least two/three times during the cooking process.
- Make ahead: You can make this orzo ahead of time. While reheating, add a splash of broth or water.
- Leftovers: leftovers reheat well and are delicious for lunch or dinner. Store in an airtight container to ensure it lasts for up to 3 days in the fridge.
Craving More Orzo? Try These Delicious Recipes:
Orzo is such a delicious pasta! Add it to your weekly dinner rotation, trust me.
- One Pot Tomato Beef Orzo
- Butternut Orzo with Roasted Broccoli
- One Pot Pepperoni Pizza Orzo
- Meatballs in Tomato Sauce with Orzo
- One Skillet Parmesan Chicken and Orzo
- Baked Meatballs with Orzo in Roasted Pepper Sauce
- One-Pot Chicken Stroganoff with Orzo
Calories Per Serving: 452 kcal
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
Calories Per Serving: 452 kcal