Orzo Risotto with Carrots (Healthy)

Make risotto with orzo and add shredded carrots for delicious sweetness. Serve this Orzo Risotto with Carrots  for dinner tonight.

Fabulous side dish & great way to get more veggies in -Carrot Orzo Risotto Low Calorie, Low Fat Healthy Dinner Recipe

 

I’ve been making Carrot Orzo Risotto for years. I can’t believe I haven’t shared it with you until now. This recipe falls into a category I like to call bonus vegetables.  If there are some vegetables in a side dish we are eating, it doesn’t count as the vegetable with dinner. It’s an extra bonus that my daughter does not complain about. Yes, I love extra bonus vegetable dishes.

Carrots happen to be paired with one of my favorite carbohydrates, orzo.  Ok, I know it is really just a little teeny shaped pasta but it brings me back to my childhood.  I have a soft spot for orzo.  For some reason, it tastes better than regular pasta.  I know it is probably all in my head.  However, if it makes me happy to eat this healthy dish, than I am going with it.  Eating healthy is all a “mental” game for me anyway.  I have to play little mind games with myself to stop that evil “unhealthy” food loving part of my brain from taking over.

Fabulous side dish & great way to get more veggies in -Carrot Orzo Risotto Low Calorie, Low Fat Healthy Dinner Recipe
I feel like I am off to a good start with eating healthy and exercising. It is all part of my resolution to put myself first. Oh, there have been little slips already.  Overall I feel like I am in control of food instead of food controlling me. There are still very trying times. My husband came home early yesterday, because he was feeling some pain in his left arm and top of his head.

If you’ve been reading my blog, you know he had a heart attack 1 1/2 years ago and had a mitro valve repair last year. His health seems to be my big “hot button” for eating. This, of course, freaked him out a little, although he was keeping it in check.  I have to stay calm for him which usually means chocolate or a cookie to calm my nerves.  This time I made a cup of tea for both of us. It actually worked!

He felt fine the rest of the day and night.  The fact that he had just had a regular check up with his cardiologist the day before, helped to keep both of us calm. Learning not to “freak” out with every little ache or pain is hard to do.  It takes a huge toll to be mentally tough all the time.  That is why I would usually “soothe” myself with food.  It’s hard to diet and exercise when you are mentally and emotionally exhausted.  We were both very happy with the way we handled the situation and that it appeared to be nothing.  (Big sigh of relief) Little “wins” like that help to keep me motivated and feel good about my progress.  What is working for you?

Fabulous side dish & great way to get more veggies in -Carrot Orzo Risotto Low Calorie, Low Fat Healthy Dinner Recipe

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Fabulous side dish & great way to get more veggies in -Carrot Orzo Risotto Low Calorie, Low Fat Healthy Dinner Recipe

Carrot Orzo Risotto

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 26 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 181 kcal
Author Christie Daruwalla

Ingredients

  • ½ medium onion cut into thirds
  • 6 oz peeled carrots
  • 2 garlic cloves chopped
  • 1 tbsp light stick butter such as Land O Lakes Light Butter Salted or regular butter
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 cup orzo if you can find whole wheat, use that
  • 1 ½ cups water
  • 1 ½ cups low sodium chicken broth
  • ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 tbsp chopped green onion
  • 1 tsp minced fresh rosemary
  • 1 tsp lemon zest

Instructions

  1. Place onion, carrots and garlic in food processor and pulse on and off until carrots are finely chopped.
  2. Melt butter and olive oil in large non-stick saucepan over medium heat.
  3. Add the carrot mixture and cook stirring occasionally for 1 minute.
  4. Add the orzo and cook until orzo is golden brown, about 5 minutes. Stir occasionally.
  5. Add water and broth to saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook until the liquid is absorbed. Stir frequently. This will take about 15-20 minutes.
  6. Take off the heat and add the remaining ingredients.
  7. Season with salt and pepper.

Recipe Notes

Serving size about 1/2 cup

I calculated 5  Weight Watcher Smartpoints.

Nutrition Facts
Carrot Orzo Risotto
Amount Per Serving
Calories 181 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 3g 5%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Total Carbohydrates 32g 11%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Sugars 3g
Protein 7g 14%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Adapted from Bon Appetit Happy Healthy Eating,

Christie

But wait, there’s more.  Check out these healthy side dishes:

Jasmine Rice Grits #fooddonelight #grits #rice #side #healthy #recipe #lowcalorie #diet #lowfatJasmine Rice Grits

Strawberry Risotto #fooddonelight #risotto #rice #strawberryrecipeStrawberry Risotto

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Comments

  1. I am glad to hear your hubby is doing okay and you are too! I know the feeling of using food to soothe your frazzled nerves. My hubby had prostate cancer and had to have his prostate removed--and the cancer had broke through the prostate wall and it totally freaked us both out. At that same time, my brother suffered 3 heart attacks right in a row and I fell and split my head open and badly sprained my ankle. Talk about being stressed! We are all fine now, but the repercussions for me have been to try to always cook and eat more healthy. Thanks for the good recipes to help me keep that goal in check. This one sound particularly good and I can't wait to go shopping for some orzo. :-)
    • Christie Daruwalla says
      I am so happy to hear you are all doing well. One of the best parts of this blog is being able to connect with others that have had their own health issues and watching us all learn together. Wishing you a Happy New Year full of health and happiness. Hope you enjoy the recipe.
  2. This looks so good. I've always wanted to try making risotto, and I love orzo as well. Pinning it!
    • Christie Daruwalla says
      Hi Marie, This is an easy introduction to risotto. It pretty much makes itself. Glad to find a fellow orzo lover.
  3. This looks wonderful Christie and I really love the new layout design. Have a great week!
    • Christie Daruwalla says
      Thanks so much Carrie. I've got a few more things to work on for the blog but glad to have the re-design done.
  4. Love your redesign! Looks like all the hassle was worth it. Is it weird that I felt kind of proud of you for making a cup of tea instead of having a cookie? I know I would've opted for the cookie :-/ Glad your husband was alright
    • Christie Daruwalla says
      LOL - Thanks so much Kelly. I was very proud of myself too. That is part of the key to success I think.
  5. Sorry to hear about your husband's health, but glad to hear he's doing ok. I'm not fond of rosemary, was wondering if you had a suggestion to replace it. Thanks!
  6. My goodness this looks good. I can imagine tucking into a bowl of this on a cold night and we still have quite a few coming our way.
  7. I have always made mushroom risotto. I will definitely have to give this carrot risotto a try. It sounds like a nice change :)
    • Christie Daruwalla says
      Mushroom risotto is awesome too. Actually I like so many different kinds of risotto. Good food!
  8. This sounds delicious on its own but a great alternative to heavy, dense regular risotto. I applaud you Christie for making your own health a priority but also supporting your husband's needs through delicious recipes like this one.
  9. This sounds wonderful. And you sound like a wonderful wife to keep him calm and relaxed! Stay with it :)
  10. When I am a mom I think I will like extra bonus vegetable dishes too!

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