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One pot cheesy vegetarian orzo primavera made with fresh vegetables, this baby and kid-friendly, healthy and satisfying dish can be on your table for the entire family to enjoy in under 30 minutes.

a large pot of cooked orzo primavera along with an adult portion served on a white plate with cheese and fresh lemon on the side

Thanks to Cabot for sponsoring this post!

I don’t know about you, but when I think pasta and cheese, I think comfort. And when loads of veggies come into the picture, then I say hello, lightened-up comfort!

This dish is perfect for babies because all the ingredients get nice and soft while cooking. It’s such an effortless way to expose them to a wide variety of flavors from early on.

And if you have a toddler or older child who is on the fence about veggies, this is the PERFECT dish to encourage him/her to give them a try. How? By getting your child involved in the cooking process!

With a wide selection of veggies available this time of year, there are so many ways you can turn this into a fun activity. You can talk about the different colors/shapes, have your child help with measuring, pouring, stirring, sampling (the best part!)…oh what fun!!  Well, minus the mess, but it’s so worth it!

Another way you can encourage them to give vegetables a try is to prepare them using different cooking methods and flavoring them in new and exciting ways! 

all the ingredients laid out on a light wooden board
 

Rather than adding cream or butter, I like to stir in Cabot’s Alpine cheddar cheese to create a rich and creamy sauce that is absolutely divine. It also amps up the protein and calcium content of the dish.

an adult portion of orzo primavera on a white plate with shredded cheese along with a block of cheese, shredded cheese and lemon on the side

Alpine is hands down my FAV cheese in the whole wide world. Period. It’s seriously a real hidden GEM. In one bite, you taste cheddar with a hint of swiss and parmesan. It’s creamy. It’s rich but not in overwhelming kind of way. It’s nutty. It’s just delicious! And if you’re unable to get your hands on this one, I recommend using their seriously sharp cheddar for the recipe. 

And if you’re looking for a quick and easy, well-balanced, portable breakfast/snack idea, be sure to check out my Southwestern Oat Muffins.

a close up shot of orzo in a large dutch oven

You can serve this as a main or side dish and feel free to mix in any of your favorite vegetables or whatever you have on hand. I love that you can enjoy this warm or cold (which is what I prefer), and the leftovers taste even better as all the ingredients get a chance to really know each other.
 
a baby's portion of orzo primavera served on a sectioned stainless steel plate with a side of diced cooked chicken
Here’s how I served this to my 2 year old. I had some cooked chicken on hand so I diced it. He still likes to shove his food rather than taking bites. But we’re working on it! 

Other Baby-Friendly Pasta Recipes:

Did you make this baby and toddler-friendly Vegetarian Orzo Primavera? Follow me on Instagram post a photo and tag me, post a photo on my Facebook page, or save it to Pinterest. I love to see what you’re making! 

5 from 4 votes

Cheesy Orzo Primavera

One pot cheesy vegetarian orzo primavera made with fresh vegetables, this kid-friendly, healthy and satisfying dish can be on your table for the entire family to enjoy in under 30 minutes.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 27 minutes
Servings: 6
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Ingredients 

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup diced yellow onion
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic cloves
  • 1 cup diced mushrooms
  • 1 medium carrot, diced
  • 1 bunch asparagus, , ends trimmed and roughly chopped into 2-inch pieces (about 2 cups)
  • 2 teaspoons italian seasoning
  • 1 14.5 ounce can no salt added diced tomatoes
  • 2 cups low sodium broth of choice, or water
  • 1 cup uncooked whole wheat orzo
  • 1 cup Cabot Alpine cheese, or sharp cheddar
  • 1 cup frozen peas, thawed (can use fresh)
  • freshly squeezed lemon juice

Instructions 

  • Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high eat. Cook the onion, garlic, and mushroom for 3-5 minutes until softened. Next, add in the carrots, asparagus, and Italian seasoning, stirring occasionally for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add tomatoes and broth and bring to a boil. Add orzo and again give it a good stir to combine.
  • Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes or so, until pasta is al dente. There should be some liquid remaining at this point.
  • Stir in cheese and peas. Allow the liquid to get fully absorbed.
  • Add freshly squeezed lemon juice and more cheese to taste, if desired.

Notes

if you find that there’s still more liquid than you’d like, cook uncovered for additional minutes.

Nutrition

Calories: 238kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 12g | Sodium: 130mg | Potassium: 298mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 169mg | Iron: 1mg
Like this recipe? Rate and comment below!

 

 

 

About Min

Thank you so much for stopping by! I am Min, a Registered Dietitian, a Christ follower, a wife, and a mom to our two miracle babies! Currently, I’m having a ton of fun feeding their tummies and sharing our baby led weaning journey! Follow me on Instagram if interested in seeing daily menu as well as tips and tricks.

5 from 4 votes (4 ratings without comment)

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5 Comments

  1. Do you have any recommendations on how to make a dairy-free version? Is there anything else we can substitute for the cheese or would you recommend any dairy-free cheeses that might work well with this dish? Or would it taste fine if we leave the cheese out altogether? Thanks so much!

    1. Hi! Cheese is the main ingredient in this dish as it’s really the only flavoring agent apart from Italian seasoning. Perhaps dairy-free cheese might work or nutritional yeast