Elegant Orzo with Wilted Spinach and Pine Nuts

Elegant Orzo with Wilted Spinach and Pine Nuts


"Orzo pasta with wilted spinach, feta cheese, tomatoes, and balsamic vinegar - goes well with fish or chicken."

Ingredients 30 m {{adjustedServings}} servings 550 cals

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Original recipe yields 8 servings



Amount per serving ({{servings}} total)

  • Calories:
  • 550 kcal
  • 27%
  • Fat:
  • 32.5 g
  • 50%
  • Carbs:
  • 49.1g
  • 16%
  • Protein:
  • 17.4 g
  • 35%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 33 mg
  • 11%
  • Sodium:
  • 514 mg
  • 21%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

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  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes. (Firm or slightly undercooked orzo works best for this dish.) Drain, transfer to a mixing bowl, and set aside.
  2. Heat olive oil and butter in a large skillet over medium high heat, stirring to blend. Stir in garlic, basil, and red pepper flakes, and reduce heat to medium. Stir in pine nuts and cook until lightly browned. Add spinach, cover, and cook on low heat for 5 minutes, or until spinach is wilted.
  3. Toss spinach mixture with orzo pasta. Portion onto serving plates with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and a sprinkling of crumbled feta cheese and chopped tomatoes. Allow guests to adjust seasoning with salt, as needed. Enjoy!
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Reviews 186

  1. 255 Ratings


I thought this was wonderful. It was very tasty and fun to make. My advice to anyone who makes it, make sure you use balsamic vinegar at the end (it's not optional!), otherwise this will be a very bland dish. I skipped over the balsamic vinegar for the first bite, thought it was boring, then added it in and it transformed the dish and rocketed it from 3 stars to 5. This also tastes great with baked zucchini chips on the side.


This was a hit and a miss in our house. I liked the idea of the feta, but not hubs, so I unfortunately had to leave it out. I loved the little spark the red pepper flakes added, but it was a little too hot for hubby's sensitive innards, so be careful with children or those who can't tolerate any "heat." And I didn't even use as much as the recipe called for! Because this is such a fresh and colorful dish I thought it would be better suited with fresh basil, and I used halved grape tomatoes for additional color and texture. I went heavier on the garlic, about one clove for the recipe scaled to two servings. I served this with a rather robust chicken dish so the fact this was light on any additional spices or herbs made this the perfect accompaniment. I think what I like best about this is that it's just so darn pretty on the plate!

Mark P

Very good. I tried this recipe to use up some extra pine nuts and I wasn't just pleasantly surprised, I was astonished how good it was. The cheese adds a delicious creaminess; the tomatoes provide a refreshing tang; the pine nuts give a wonderful fragrance; the orzo and wilted spinach in spices serve as a nice base. And it's quite pretty.<br>One nice feature of the recipe is that the main ingredients are prepared separately so each person can mix them to his or her own preference. (I like more spinach (50% more) and much more tomatoes (100% more) and less cheese (33% less).) <br> Some changes: I used half the olive oil and 2/3rds the butter.