Skillet Chicken with Orzo, Tomatoes & Chèvre

Orzo is a pasta that's rice-shaped and that makes it perfect for loads of one-pan meals. This time around, I'm sharing one that relies on already cooked chicken, loads of flavor kings like smoked paprika, balsamic vinegar, garlic, sun dried tomatoes, and cherry tomatoes, and the aforementioned orzo simmered to perfection in chicken stock. There's a lot going on here without there being a lot of work.

As is often the case, there's some space for switching things up. This recipe calls for cooked chicken, but if your fridge is home to leftover pork, steak, tofu, or seafood, they can all find their way into this dish. How much you season and cook them will depend on your preferences. I love the garlic in this dish, but pepper and sun dried tomatoes could pretty easily be swapped out for other favorites or what you have on hand. If you aren't a fan of capers' briny goodness, feel free to omit or substitute chopped olives instead. Even the orzo could be swapped with another small pasta though its shape does lend itself to this particular dish. Different cheese? Sure. Skip the tomatoes and onions? Okay - but they really shine in this recipe.

Since this dish really does have a bit of everything, I usually just grab a beverage and call it dinner. If you have a bit of baguette on hand, tear off a piece or two of that to sop up any juices in the bottom of your bowl. Quick and simple eating is here for the foreseeable!

Skillet Chicken with Orzo, Tomatoes & Chèvre

  • 3 T. olive oil
  • 1 lb. coarsely chopped, cooked chicken
  • 1 T. dried oregano
  • 2 tsp. smoked paprika
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 T. balsamic vinegar
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 red bell pepper, minced
  • ½ c. sliced sun dried tomatoes
  • 2 c. dry orzo pasta
  • 2 ½ c. chicken stock
  • 2 T. capers, drained
  • 2 ½ c. cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 T. extra virgin olive oil
  • ⅓ c. green onions
  • 1 c. crumbled chèvre

In a large skillet, toss together the olive oil, chicken, oregano, paprika; season with salt and pepper.

Cook over medium-high heat until the chicken is browned all over. Stir in the balsamic vinegar and garlic, cook another minute. Using a slotted spoon, remove the chicken from the skillet.

Add the bell pepper and sun dried tomato to the drippings in the skillet. Cook until soft, 2-3 minutes.

Add the orzo and stock. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring often until almost all the water is absorbed, about 5 to 10 minutes. Check for doneness and add water and continue cooking as needed.

Stir the chicken and capers into the orzo. Allow the chicken to warm through, about 3 minutes.

Meanwhile, toss the tomatoes with the olive oil and green onions in a bowl. Season with salt. To serve, spoon the tomatoes over the chicken and top with the chèvre.

  • Yields: 6 servings
  • Preparation Time: 20 minutes