Tarragon Mushroom Orzo with Chicken



Serving size

about 3 cups
30 Minutes

This recipe can easily be multiplied, is a meal all to itself, and makes good leftovers.

Tarragon Mushroom Orzo with Chicken


2 tsp. Olive oil
16 ounces Crimini mushrooms (sliced)
1 tsp. Fresh tarragon (chopped)(or 1/3 tsp.. dried)
3 quart Water
4 ounce Whole Wheat Orzo (or gluten free orzo)
4 tsp. Olive oil
2 Tbsp. Pine nuts
1 cup Frozen peas
8 ounces Boneless, skinless chicken thighs (cut into 1/2 inch cubes)
1/4 cup No salt added vegetable stock (or no salt added chicken stock)
1/4 tsp. Salt
8 ounces Yellow squash (about 1 medium, seeded and cut into strips)
1 to taste Black pepper


Place the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.

Add the mushrooms and cook, tossing frequently, until the mushrooms are well browned.

Add the tarragon to the pan just as the mushrooms are finished browning and stir to blend.

Remove the mushrooms to a plate.

Place the water in a medium stock pot or large sauce pan over high heat.

When the water is boiling add the orzo.

While the orzo is cooking place a large skillet over medium high heat.

Add the chicken.

Cook for about 5 minutes until the chicken is browned on all sides. Stir frequently.

Add the pinenuts.

Add the vegetable stock and the salt.

Cover and cook over medium heat for about 7 minutes. Stir occasionally.

Add about 1/4 cup of the pasta water to the skillet along with the yellow squash, peas and the cooked mushrooms.

Cook for another 5 minutes. Stir occasionally.

Drain the orzo and add it to the skillet.

Toss well and serve.

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Special Diet Information

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GERD / Acid Reflux

No specific GERD triggers.


This recipe is safe for those who are lactose intolerant.

Coumadin® (Warfarin)

This recipe is safe for Coumadin (warfarin) users.

Gluten Sensitivity

This recipe is safe for those who are sensitive to gluten. Use gluten-free orzo in this dish.


This is a low sodium recipe.

Recipe Notes

Tarragon is a perfect spice to be the featured flavor of a dish.  It is aromatic, fresh, herbaceous and a bit spicy.  It goes perfectly with the umami flavors of the mushrooms and chicken in this dish.

Tarragon can, however, be very strong if you use too much of it.  For each serving a rule of thumb is about a half teaspoon or less of fresh and about 1/8 teaspoon or less of dried.  The anise flavor can easily overwhelm a dish.

That said, scaling your recipe to a larger batch, to serve eight, for example, you might want a little bit extra but too much will make your dish taste bitter instead of it having that lovely aromatic flavor that tarragon imparts to a recipe.

"Time is an herb that cures all Diseases."

Benjamin Franklin, Statesman