One of my husband’s favorite meals is chicken pot pie, so it’s a popular flavor profile in our house. Before I’d learned to make pastry, I figured out a quick and easy hack to the classic dish: toss the same flavors into pasta with cheddar cheese. The creaminess of the orzo and cheddar adds something special to the chicken and veggies, and it’s exceptional!
This one-pot meal comes together pretty quickly compared to traditional homemade pot pies, and it satisfies that comfort food craving when it rages. It also makes enough to feed six hungry adults, so adjust as necessary.
Cheesy Chicken Pot Pie Orzo
(Base recipe: Jo Cooks)
1 TBSP butter
1 large onion, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
2 medium carrots, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
1 TBSP flour
1/2 C white wine
4 C chicken broth
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried sage
12 oz orzo, uncooked
1 C frozen peas
1 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped
1/2 C white cheddar or Parmesan, grated
1 TBSP fresh chives, chopped
In a large saucepan or Dutch oven melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onions, celery, carrots, and garlic to the pot; cook for about 5 minutes or until the vegetables soften.
Add the chopped chicken thighs to the pot and season with salt and pepper. Cook until the chicken is cooked through, about 5-7 minutes.
Add the flour and stir to coat everything evenly. Cook for a minute or two, then add the white wine. Simmer for another minute or two to cook off the alcohol. The mixture will thicken.
Add chicken broth, orzo, thyme, and sage. Stir everything together and adjust for seasoning as necessary with salt and pepper. Bring to a gentle boil, then turn the heat down to medium low. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the frozen peas and the rosemary. Stir everything together and continue simmering until the pasta is cooked according to package directions (approx. 10 minutes).
Gently stir in grated cheese, garnish with fresh chives, and serve.