White Cheddar Orzo with Crispy Sage and Mushrooms

5 from 2 votes

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White Cheddar Orzo with Crispy Sage and Mushrooms

White Cheddar Orzo with Crispy Sage and Mushrooms

We love this white cheddar orzo with crispy sage and mushrooms! This mushroom orzo risotto is filled with flavor and textures from the crispy mushrooms and buttery sage tossed with creamy orzo and finished with lots of sharp white cheddar. We’ll start by frying sage in butter, and then cooking the mushroom in butter, too, which means this dish won’t need olive oil, either.

This recipe is absolutely perfect for Fall and any Fall and Winter holidays coming up, it is SO cozy and creamy, it’s our new go-to and did we mention it’s all made in one pot? It can be served for dinner as a main meal (you can also add some shredded chicken in here, which would be lovely!) or a really great side dish.

White Cheddar Orzo with Crispy Sage and Mushrooms

What ingredients do you need for this mushroom orzo risotto?

Orzo: Orzo is a type of wheat pasta that is shaped like a grain of rice (although is often confused with rice!) We love to make risotto-style dishes with orzo, or you can make cold pasta salads as well, like our Roasted Tomato, Feta & Herb Orzo with Lemon Vinaigrette. However, you can substitute this with arborio rice if you want to make this a more classic risotto recipe.

Sage Leaves: The earthy flavor in sage helps cut through all of the rich flavors in this dish. Not only does it add a peppery flavor, but it’s also only going to add the crunch on top of our orzo.

Vegetable Broth: This will serve as the liquid for our orzo. We’re using vegetable broth here, but chicken broth will also work well here, you can boil your orzo in that!

White Wine: We’ll be reducing the orzo, shallots and garlic in white wine which helps add more depth of flavor to our orzo.

White Cheddar Cheese: For our cheese, we love using sharp white cheddar because it add a sharpness and tang to a dish that we find to balance out the creaminess of the orzo. Since we’re not adding cream to our dish, this cheese will help create that same effect!

White Cheddar Orzo with Crispy Sage and Mushrooms

Instructions to make this white cheddar orzo with crispy sage and mushrooms

Fry Up The Sage Leaves

In a large deep skillet or saucepan, melt 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter on medium-high heat on the stovetop until glistening. Add in your sage leaves to fry for 20 to 30 seconds. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. Season with kosher salt, just a pinch. Set aside until serving.

Crisp Up Your Mushrooms

In the same pan, bring the heat to medium-high, add in your remaining tablespoon of butter to melt, add in your mushrooms, and saute until they brown, about 6 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with salt. Remove some of your crispy mushrooms for topping (about 1⁄2 cup!)

Sweat Your Aromatics, Reduce your Wine and Add the Orzo!

Bring the heat to medium. Add the shallot and garlic and cook for 2 to 3 minutes until translucent, you don’t want to get any color on this. Season with kosher salt, black pepper and stir.

Add in your orzo, stirring frequently to combine with the mushrooms, then pour in your white wine and cook until completely reduced, for 1 minute.

Pour in your Broth

Add in your warmed broth 1/2 cup at a time, stirring as you go, constantly, until it gets completely absorbed, and repeat in batches, until you have no more broth, about 15 to 20 minutes.

Melt The Cheese and Serve!

Finish with your cheddar cheese, tossing completely, until completely incorporated and melted. Season with kosher salt and black pepper, to taste.

Serve in bowls topped with your reserved mushrooms and crispy sage.

White Cheddar Orzo with Crispy Sage and Mushrooms

Tips Tricks, and Substitutions

Are there any other mushroom types I can use for this recipe?

Mushrooms are so versatile and there’s just so many that the possibilities are endless. A good substitution would be cremini mushrooms because they have a similar bite, oyster mushrooms or shiitake mushrooms.

What else can I add to this dish?

This dish is super customizable to you! If you want to add greens to this dish, you can cook up something like spinach with the shallots and mushrooms. Or you can also add protein, you can add shrimp or chicken.

Can I make batches and store them in the refrigerator?

If you have leftovers you can store them in the fridge, in a covered container. What we like to do is add a little more liquid when we’re having the dish later on, so we can add some more moisture to the dish that may have gotten dried up in the fridge. After that, we’ll microwave, or warm up on the stove, and it’s ready to eat!

White Cheddar Orzo with Crispy Sage and Mushrooms

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White Cheddar Orzo with Crispy Sage and Mushrooms
5 from 2 votes

White Cheddar Orzo with Crispy Sage and Mushrooms

We love this white cheddar orzo with crispy sage and mushrooms! This mushroom orzo risotto is filled with flavor and textures.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 35 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients 

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 10 to 15 fresh sage leaves
  • Kosher salt
  • 8 ounces maitake mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • 1 medium shallot, minced
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup dry orzo
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 4 cups vegetable broth, warmed
  • 1 cup grated sharp white cheddar cheese

Instructions 

  • In a large deep skillet or saucepan, melt 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter on medium-high heat on the stovetop until glistening. Add in your sage leaves to fry for 20 to 30 seconds. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. Season with kosher salt, just a pinch. Set aside until serving.
  • In the same pan, bring the heat to medium-high, add in your remaining tablespoon of butter to melt, add in your mushrooms, and saute until they brown, about 6 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with salt. Remove some of your crispy mushrooms for topping (about 1⁄2 cup!)
  • Bring the heat to medium. Add the shallot and garlic and cook for 2 to 3 minutes until translucent, you don’t want to get any color on this. Season with kosher salt, black pepper and stir.
  • Add in your orzo, stirring frequently to combine with the mushrooms, then pour in your white wine and cook until completely reduced, for 1 minute.
  • Add in your warmed broth 1/2 cup at a time, stirring as you go, constantly, until it gets completely absorbed, and repeat in batches, until you have no more broth, about 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Finish with your cheddar cheese, tossing completely, until completely incorporated and melted. Season with kosher salt and black pepper, to taste.
  • Serve in bowls topped with your reserved mushrooms and crispy sage.
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