Home » Recipes » Soup » Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup

Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup

This Greek-inspired Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup recipe is bright and sunshiny, infused with fresh lemon. Tender chicken, orzo pasta, and a medley of vegetables round out these delicious bowls of soup!

overhead photo of bowls and a pot of chicken soup with lemon and orzo

Easy Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup Recipe

Chicken soup is welcome on our table any time of year. And this easy Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup recipe is one that sways easily with the seasons. It’s comforting and lightly hearty with chicken, orzo, and veggies – plus, infused with bright, fresh lemons. This meal is like serving bowls of sunshine!

Why You’ll Love This Chicken Orzo Soup with Lemon

We love chicken soup around here! From my mom’s classic chicken noodle soup, to lemon chicken tortellini soup and ginger chicken soup, we always welcome a variety of recipes. Here’s why you’ll love this recipe:

  • One-bowl dinner. This soup is full of lean protein, nourishing vegetables, and little bites of pasta, making it a perfect one-bowl meal. Of course you can round it out with a salad or bread – there are lots of ways to serve this soup, check out some of my serving suggestions at the end of this post.
  • Cozy & comforting. The soup broth is savory and brightened up with lemon, and full of delicious bites. It feels like a beautiful hug!
  • Adaptable. You can follow the recipe as-written, or change things up to what you have on hand. I have a variety of options for you lower down in this post!
ingredients for chicken soup with lemon, orzo, and vegetables

Recipe Ingredients

Check out what you’ll need for this chicken orzo soup with lemon below. The exact ingredient amounts are in the printable recipe card at the end of this post.

  • Olive oil & butter – I like to use this combo for sauteeing veggies. Butter adds delicious flavor and richness.
  • Vegetables – A yummy medley of veggies, to include onion, leeks, celery, carrots, and garlic, provides deliciousness to the soup.
  • Flour – All-purpose flour adds a touch of thickness to the soup.
  • Chicken broth – I like to use low-sodium chicken broth so I can control the sodium.
  • Chicken breasts – Boneless, skinless chicken breasts make this soup easy – and full of lean protein, which I love.
  • Seasonings – I use an easy combination of Italian seasoning, bay leaves, and simple salt & pepper.
  • Bay leaves – Bay leaves add an earthy undertone to the soup. You can omit them if you don’t have any.
  • Orzo – Orzo is small, rice-shaped pasta. Substitute small macaroni pasta if you can’t find orzo.
  • Lemon – Lemon juice and zest add bright, fresh flavor – SO GOOD!
A white bowl brims with lemon chicken orzo soup as a spoon digs in.

How to Make Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup

Follow along with my method for chicken orzo soup below. Find the detailed instructions in the recipe card lower down.

  • Heat olive oil & butter. Melt the butter in the olive oil in a large pot or Dutch oven.
  • Cook vegetables. Add the chopped onions, leeks, celery, and carrots, and sauté.
  • Add garlic. Then stir in the garlic.
  • Sprinkle flour. Stir in the flour and cook for a few minutes.
  • Add broth. Stir in the chicken broth.
  • Cook chicken. Add the chicken breasts, Italian seasoning, and bay leaves, and simmer.
  • Shred the chicken. Remove the cooked chicken and shred or chop it.
  • Add orzo. Stir in the uncooked orzo and simmer.
  • Return the chicken. Stir the chicken back into the soup.
A ladle scoops out a portion of lemon chicken orzo soup from a soup pot.
  • Finish. Season the soup with salt and pepper, stir in fresh lemon juice and zest.
a bowl of chicken soup with lemon and orzo
  • Enjoy! Serve the soup hot and garnished with fresh parsley. Offer some additional lemon slices if desired.

Tips & Variations

While chicken orzo soup with lemon is a classic soup recipe, I’m always open to playing around with the ingredients. Simply master the basic recipe and then try some of these tips and variation suggestions:

  • Creamy chicken orzo soup. Stir some half & half into the soup at the end of the cooking time to add rich, creamy texture and flavor.
  • Use homemade broth. To up the flavor ante of your chicken soup, you can use homemade chicken stock. You can also use vegetable broth if you don’t have chicken broth or wish for a slightly different flavor profile.
  • Turkey orzo soup. Think turkey instead of chicken, especially following a holiday meal when you have turkey leftovers.
  • Lemon chicken soup with rice. Swap the orzo with quick-cooking rice. Or cook rice separately or use leftover rice, and stir the cooked rice in at the end.
  • Change up the vegetables. You can change up the veggies or simply add more. Greens like baby spinach or baby chard are especially good in chicken orzo soup with lemon. I also like to add frozen peas or fresh pea pods.
Bowls of lemon chicken orzo soup on a table with a juicer and lemon halves nearby.

Serving Suggestions

A steaming bowl of lemon chicken orzo soup is a meal on its own, but of course, I like to add a few sides to round it out into a fuller meal. Fresh bread or a salad are nice choices. Here are a few serving suggestions:

a close-up overhead photo of lemon soup with chicken and orzo pasta

Proper Storage

You can save lemon chicken orzo soup for another meal – you’ll find that the flavors deepen the longer it rests in the fridge. Here’s how to store your leftovers:

  • Fridge – Store cooled, lemon chicken and orzo soup in an airtight container or glass jar with a tight-fitting lid in the fridge for up to 5 days.
  • Freezer – Place individual portions of soup in freezer-safe, sealable bags or airtight containers for easy serving later and store them in the freezer for up to 3 months. Defrost the soup completely in the fridge before reheating.
  • To Reheat – Soup can be reheated on the stove in a sauce pan over medium heat. Stir often until the soup is heated through. Or, reheat soup in a microwave-safe bowl in the microwave for 1 minute at a time until hot. Stir the soup after 1 minute to make sure it’s heating evenly.

More Easy Soup Recipes

overhead photo of a white bowl with lemon chicken orzo soup

Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup

Yield: 6 servings
prep time: 15 minutes
cook time: 45 minutes
total time: 1 hour
This Greek-inspired Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup recipe is bright and sunshiny, infused with fresh lemon. Tender chicken, orzo pasta, and a medley of vegetables round out these delicious bowls of soup!
4.5 Stars (4 Reviews)


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • ½ medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 medium leek, finely chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, finely chopped
  • 4 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 8 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 cup orzo, uncooked
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice + lemon zest of one lemon
  • Kosher salt & black pepper, to taste
  • chopped fresh parsley, to garnish


  • Heat olive oil and butter over medium heat in a large pot or Dutch oven.
  • Add chopped onions, leeks, celery, and carrots. Sauté until vegetables are softened, about 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Stir in minced garlic and sauté for 1-2 minutes, until fragrant.
  • Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables and stir to combine. Cook for 1-2 minutes.
  • Gradually pour the chicken broth into the pot, stirring constantly to avoid lumps. 
  • Add the chicken breasts, Italian seasoning, and bay leaves. Bring mixture to a simmer. Cover the pot, reduce heat, and let the chicken cook in the simmering broth for 20 minutes, or until cooked through and reaches 165°F on an instant-read thermometer. 
  • Transfer the cooked chicken to a plate and let rest for 5 minutes. Then shred chicken into bite-size pieces or chop it.
  • Stir the orzo into the soup and continue simmering until the orzo is cooked to al dente, usually about 8-10 minutes. Return shredded chicken to the broth.
  • Season soup with salt & pepper to taste, then stir in fresh lemon juice and zest. Once the soup is all warmed, it's time to serve.
  • Ladle hot soup into individual bowls and garnish with fresh parsley. Offer additional fresh lemon slices if desired, for even more lemon flavor.

Nutrition Information:

Serving: 1 Calories: 357kcal Carbohydrates: 38g Protein: 32g Fat: 8g Saturated Fat: 2g Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g Cholesterol: 76mg Sodium: 1362mg Fiber: 3g Sugar: 4g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by Spoonacular. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee accuracy. If your health depends on nutrition information, please calculate again with your own favorite calculator.
Did you make this recipe?Please leave a comment below. And share a photo on Instagram with the hashtag #afarmgirlsdabbles or tag @farmgirlsdabble!

get new posts via email:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating: