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Creamy Ricotta Chicken and Orzo Skillet in white pan with spoon in it.
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4.97 from 55 votes

Creamy Ricotta Chicken and Orzo Skillet

Dairy-Free (if modified)
Total Time45 minutes
Servings: 4


For the Chicken:

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

For the Orzo:

  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 large shallot halved and thinly sliced
  • 8 ounces baby bella mushrooms thinly sliced
  • 4 cups baby spinach packed
  • 1 cup uncooked orzo pasta
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 2 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • Zest of ½ lemon
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¾ cup whole milk ricotta cheese (sub dairy-free ricotta for dairy-free; I like Kite Hill brand)
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella (omit for dairy-free or use dairy-free cheese)
  • ¼ cup thinly sliced basil leaves for serving


  • Preheat the oven to 375℉.

Brown the Chicken:

  • Heat the oil in a large, oven safe skillet (I use a 3.5 qt braiser) over medium-high heat. Add the chicken, salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, and crushed red pepper flakes and toss to combine. Spread the chicken into a single layer and cook, tossing occasionally until the chicken is golden brown. It doesn’t have to be fully cooked, as it will continue to cook in the oven, but you want a nice color to it. Transfer the cooked chicken to a clean plate and set aside.

Cook the Orzo:

  • Add the garlic, shallot, and mushrooms and continue to cook, tossing occasionally, until the mushrooms begin to soften and the shallots are tender, about 4 minutes.
  • Reduce heat to medium, add the baby spinach and cook, gently tossing, until just wilted, about 2 minutes.
  • Add the white wine and cook until reduced by half, about 2 minutes.
  • Add the orzo and toss to combine. Add the broth, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt, and ricotta cheese and stir until well combined. Bring to a simmer and add the cooked chicken back into the skillet. Toss until well combined then spread the contents of the skillet into a single layer. Sprinkle the top with the mozzarella.
  • Transfer to the oven and bake until the orzo is cooked through and tender and the cheese and brown and bubbly, about 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest for 3 to 5 minutes to allow the sauce to settle and thicken even further.

To Serve:

  • Top with basil, serve and enjoy!


This recipe is dairy-free if modified! You can use dairy-free ricotta and either omit the cheese on top of the skillet or use dairy-free shredded cheese.


Calories: 636kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 43g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 113mg | Sodium: 1232mg | Potassium: 1153mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 3373IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 320mg | Iron: 5mg