This one pot orzo primavera is seriously one of my favorite meals ever! It's packed with tender vegetables, takes under 30 minutes to make, and is loaded with spring flavors.
Pasta primavera has always been one of my favorite dishes. It's creamy and loaded with flavor and vegetables. Traditional primavera sauce is made up of chicken broth, cream, parmesan cheese, and seasoning. In order to make this dish vegan, we'll be using vegetable broth, eliminating the cream, and using vegan parmesan cheese.
This dish is a light & healthy, yet comforting, plant-based meal that's super customizable. It's perfect for meal prep or a quick & easy weeknight dinner. This recipe is vegan, dairy-free, can be easily made gluten-free, and is loaded with veggies and fiber.
- Whole Wheat Orzo: I love using this pasta for this dish mainly because of how we're going to be cooking it! It sucks up the vegetable broth perfectly and makes it so we can cook nearly everything in one pot and don't have to drain it.
- Vegetable Broth: This is our liquid for our orzo pasta - it adds so much flavor! I've been obsessed with mixing Better Than Bouillon No Chicken Base with water and using that as my broth. If you've never tried it, you MUST.
- Garlic: Is there anything garlic doesn't take to the next level? I think not.
- Vegetables: I tried to stick with vibrant, green veggies like french green beans, zucchini, spinach, and broccolini! I also added mushrooms because I'm obsessed with them.
- Lemon Juice: Just a squeeze! It adds the perfect touch to bring out the flavor of the veggies and garlic.
This recipe is actually very simple to make and takes less than 30 minutes!
- In a large pot or straight sided pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add mushrooms and sauté for 6-8 minutes until golden and tender. Add garlic and sauté for a minute then add the orzo and stir until evenly coated in the oil.
- Add in vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Once boiling, keep covered until the liquid is almost fully absorbed (5-6 minute mark). At this point, add in broccolini, zucchini, french green beans, and spinach. Cover again and let everything cook for 4-5 more minutes, or until the broth is fully absorbed, spinach is wilted, and the other veggies are tender.
- Add the mushrooms to the main pot and stir to combine. Add in the lemon juice, seasonings, top with vegan parmesan and enjoy!!!
Recipe Substitutions & Variations
This recipe is perfect as is (in my humble opinion) but you can definitely switch up a few things if you want or need!
- Change up the veggies: You can truly use whatever veggies you like best, that's the beauty of a primavera! Here are some of my suggestions:
- Swap the spinach for kale
- Swap the broccolini for plain, old broccoli
- Swap the french green beans with either snap peas, asparagus, or regular green beans
- Add in some blistered cherry tomatoes
- As I mentioned, I love eating this year-round, so use whatever veggies are in season or affordable for you.
- Get rid of the veggies you don't like, and increase the amount of the ones you do like!
- Use a different pasta: I have found that orzo works the best for this recipe since it sucks up the vegetable broth so well. But, you can really use any pasta you like! Penne, spaghetti, fettuccine, linguine, rigatoni, capellini, or farfalle are all incredibly popular when it comes to pasta primavera. Depending on how big the pasta is/how good or poor it is at absorbing liquid, you may need to increase the amount of broth and/or drain it.
- Change the liquid base: Instead of vegetable broth, you can use 50% water/50% vegetable broth or just 100% water. HOWEVER, using only water takes away a ton of flavor, so I wouldn't recommend it.
- Easily make this pasta primavera gluten-free by using your favorite gluten-free pasta.
Make sure you're keeping the pot covered! This helps the liquid not only absorb into the pasta, but also evaporates any excess liquid.
Add the lemon juice in at the very end. I've added it in the beginning and it can actually pickle the garlic, turning it a bluish/green.
Meal Prep & Storage Tips
This vegan pasta primavera tastes great leftover. You can eat it cold as a pasta salad or reheat it on the stove or in the microwave with a splash of vegetable broth.
If you want to prep it in advance or have leftovers, just store the prepared pasta in an airtight container and refrigerate it for up to five days.
Other recipes you might like
Vegan Lemon Orzo Primavera
- 2 tablespoons oil I used grapeseed oil, divided
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 cup whole wheat orzo
- 2 ½ cups vegetable broth or 2 cups water + 1 tablespoon 'No Chicken' or 'Vegetable' Base
- 1 large zucchini cubed
- 8 oz baby bella mushrooms sliced
- 1 cup spinach
- 1 bunch broccolini
- 1 cup french green beans trimmed and halved
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- salt and pepper to taste
- vegan parmesan cheese for garnish
- In a straight-sided pan or large pot, add 1 tablespoon of oil over medium to medium-high heat. Once hot, add mushrooms and sauté for 6-8 minutes until golden and tender.2 tablespoons oil, 8 oz baby bella mushrooms
- Add garlic and sauté until fragrant. Add in orzo, stir until evenly coated in the oil and garlic, and cook for another minute.3 cloves garlic, 1 cup whole wheat orzo
- Add in vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Once boiling, cover, only lifting to stir occasionally, and cook until the vegetable broth is almost fully absorbed (7-8 minutes).2 ½ cups vegetable broth
- Add in broccolini, spinach, french green beans, and zucchini. Cover again and cook for another 5 minutes, or until broth is fully absorbed and vegetables are tender.1 large zucchini, 1 cup spinach, 1 bunch broccolini, 1 cup french green beans
- Add the lemon juice, salt and pepper. Stir to combine and taste to adjust seasonings to your preference.2 tablespoons lemon juice, salt and pepper
- Top with vegan parmesan cheese and enjoy immediately!vegan parmesan cheese