Meatless Monday: Garlicky butter puts simple asparagus orzo over the top

There is such a thing as a delicious comforting pasta dish that doesn’t weigh you down. This super-easy vegetarian dish is full of cooked orzo pasta and roasted asparagus, making it a light but filling meal perfect for lunch or dinner.

asparagus garlic butter orzo
Image: Brandi Bidot/SheKnows

Roasted asparagus, mashed roasted garlic with melted butter, fresh lemon and some salty Parmesan cheese give this orzo so much flavor you won’t miss the meat even a little.

However, this super-easy meal could easily be served along with chicken or even grilled shrimp, if desired.

asparagus garlic butter orzo
Image: Brandi Bidot/SheKnows

Warm garlic butter asparagus orzo recipe

Adapted from Diethood

Serves 6

Prep time: 10 minutes | Cook time: 25 minutes | Total time: 35 minutes


For the roasted asparagus

  • 1 bunch fresh asparagus, washed and dried
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Sea salt, for seasoning

For the orzo

  • 1-1/4 cups orzo pasta
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 6 roasted garlic cloves, mashed
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 handful fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 small lemon, sliced into small pieces
  • 1 cup sliced cherry tomatoes


  1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees F, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Place the asparagus on the baking sheet, and drizzle with olive oil. Toss well, and season with sea salt.
  3. Roast the asparagus for about 15 minutes or until tender.
  4. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add the orzo, and cook the pasta as directed on the package, about 8 – 10 minutes.
  5. Once cooked, drain the pasta, and return it to the pot over medium heat.
  6. Stir in the butter, mashed garlic and sea salt, and mix until the butter has melted.
  7. Add the chopped parsley, Parmesan cheese, sliced lemon pieces, tomatoes and roasted asparagus.
  8. Cook for 5 minutes or until the pasta and vegetables are warm.
  9. Transfer to a serving bowl, and serve warm.
meatless monday
Image: SheKnows

More orzo recipes

Beef orzo skillet
Orzo salad with broccoli and chickpeas
Orzo-stuffed tomatoes


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