Lemon Chicken Soup with Orzo

Lemon chicken soup with orzo is a zesty, healthy and easy to make soup that the entire family will love! The light lemon flavor goes perfectly with the hearty chicken, vegetables and orzo.

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It takes just 30 minutes to whip up this aromatic, hearty lemon chicken soup with orzo dish and it’s bound to be a hit with everyone in the family, especially when winter rolls around – which seems like it will be sooner than we want this fall.

Lemon Chicken Soup with Orzo in a large blue pot

Lemon Chicken Soup

Chicken noodle soup is a comfort food in every home and this variation is just as good. I love finding another way to serve up one of my favourite dishes so if you’re a chicken noodle soup fan don’t forget to try my 15-minute chicken mushroom Udon noodle soup too.

Just one taste of this deliciously warming lemon chicken soup with orzo will transport you right back to your youth. It’s creamy but still slurp-able just like you’d expect from any good chicken noodle soup. And the filling orzo pasta makes it substantial enough to make you feel like you’ve had a proper meal too!

a scoop of Lemon Chicken Soup with Orzo in a large blue pot

How To Make Lemon Chicken Soup with Orzo

  1. Heat up some olive oil over medium heat (you’ll need a large pot for this) and cook the onion, celery, and carrots in the oil for around 5 minutes until they start to soften. Once the onion is translucent, it’s time to throw in some garlic and keep stirring for another minute or so.
  2. Add some thyme, salt, black pepper, bay leaf, and oregano to season and cook for another 30 seconds. The mouth-watering aroma is really going to start hitting the kitchen at this point!
  3. After 30 seconds, pour the chicken broth into the pot and bring it to boil. Then reduce the heat down to medium-low, partially cover the pot, and allow it to simmer for about 10 minutes. You want the vegetables to be just the right amount of tender before stirring in the orzo.
  4. Stir in the orzo and keep cooking until it’s softened. Then add the lemon juice and cook for another 5 minutes until it’s all heated through.
  5. Once that’s done, you’re at the final hurdle and it’s time to add the chicken and spinach. Keep cooking for another few minutes until the spinach has wilted into the broth and the chicken is completely cooked through.
  6. Finally – grab a ladle to serve the soup into bowls and garnish with a few slices of lemon and a sprinkling of  Parmesan cheese.
Lemon Chicken Soup with Orzo in a large blue pot and in a soup bowl

Tips And Tricks For Making This Soup

  • For a chunkier soup, reduce the amount of broth you use and if you like a more brothy soup go for about 2 extra cups.
  • Go vegetarian with this dish by using white beans and a protein substitute instead of chicken.
  • This lemon chicken soup can actually be made with any kind of pasta! Even rice will work, but just remember that rice can take longer to cook depending on what type you’re using. With white rice, it’ll take around 15 minutes.
  • You can whip this dish up even faster if you use pre-shredded chicken. You can pick some up in your local deli or use up any leftovers you have from my yummy rotisserie chicken.
  • Try to use fresh herbs where you can, it makes all the difference and really gives a flavour boost to the soup.
    If you’re prepping this soup in advance you’ll need to cook the orzo separately and combine it with the soup when you’re heating it up.
close up Lemon Chicken Soup with Orzo in a large blue pot

More Chicken Soup Recipes For You To Enjoy

Happy cooking! As a lemon lover this healthy soup is going right onto the monthly menu for the winter. I love how fresh and zippy it is with the lemon and the Parmesan, it’s a good way to shake things up. And like I said, use a rotisserie chicken for a fast and easy cheat!



Lemon Chicken Soup With Orzo

Lemon chicken soup with orzo is a zesty, healthy and easy to make soup that the entire family will love! The light lemon flavor goes perfectly with the hearty chicken, vegetables and orzo.
5 from 5 votes
close up Lemon Chicken Soup with Orzo in a large blue pot
Prep Time
30 minutes
American, Greek
Karlynn Johnston


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup of diced carrots
  • 1 cup of diced celery
  • 1 medium white onion diced
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 6 cups of chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup dried orzo
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 large chicken breasts cooked and diced
  • 1/2 package frozen spinach

Soup Garnishes

  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill
  • 1 lemon sliced for garnish
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


  • Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Cook and stir carrots, celery, and onion in hot oil until the vegetables begin to soften and the onion becomes translucent, 5 to 7 minutes. Add garlic; cook and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute more.
  • Season mixture with thyme, oregano, salt, black pepper, and bay leaf; continue cooking another 30 seconds before pouring chicken broth into the pot.
  • Bring the broth to a boil. Partially cover the pot, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer until the vegetables are just tender, about 10 minutes.
  • Stir in the orzo, then cook until softened. Add the, lemon juice into the broth Cook until the chicken and orzo are heated through, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the spinach and the chicken; cook until the spinach wilts into the broth and the chicken is heated through, around 4-5 minutes.
  • Ladle the soup into bowls; garnish with lemon slices and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Recipe Notes

 Use a store bought rotisserie chicken to save time on this recipe!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 160kcal, Carbohydrates: 14g, Protein: 16g, Fat: 5g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 39mg, Sodium: 781mg, Potassium: 509mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 2781IU, Vitamin C: 29mg, Calcium: 71mg, Iron: 1mg

All calories and info are based on a third party calculator and are only an estimate. Actual nutritional info will vary with brands used, your measuring methods, portion sizes and more.

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Lemon chicken soup with orzo is a zesty, healthy and easy to make soup that the entire family will love! The light lemon flavor goes perfectly with the hearty chicken, vegetables and orzo.

Karlynn Johnston

I’m a busy mom of two, wife & cookbook author who loves creating fast, fresh meals for my little family on the Canadian prairies. Karlynn Facts: I'm allergic to broccoli. I've never met a cocktail that I didn't like. I would rather burn down my house than clean it. Most of all, I love helping YOU get dinner ready because there's nothing more important than connecting with our loved ones around the dinner table!

Learn more about me

Site Index Chicken breast Chicken soup Lemon Orzo

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  1. Margo Haynes says

    Dear Karlynn & Mike. I can’t tell from the recipes that I’ve saved if I ever subscribed to your blog or not, IF I did, I must have put a hold on it just before some major surgery this year, because I would be having difficulty getting to my computer after the surgery. IF I put a hold on it can you please re-instate my subscription? This is because I make a separate recipe page for each recipe that I like & place where they belong whether it’s under the type of meat, casseroles, pie, etc. Dear Jessie! If I printed all of them out, I’d probably have 3 or more large 3 ring notebooks full of recipes. At one time I had printed out enough pages for a large 3 ring notebook & then lost it in a flood! Out of all of my food blogs, the two that I enjoy the most are the blogs from The Homesick Texan & yours! Hers because, I too am a DP Texan, & yours! When I was married the first time, I was blessed with a grandmother-in-law that made dishes from the “old country”, “Busha”(spelling?) “Grandmother” was from a city on the Russian / Lithuanian border. She was from the Russian side & her husband at the time, “Vuya” which means “uncle” I was told; (again spelling) was from the Lithuanian side. This was before Russia gobbled up Lithuania). You too, bless us with recipes from your heritage in another country & I absolutely love them. I made your delicious Lemon Chicken Soup last night! However, I cooked the orzo separately & we added it to our bowls individually as I watch pasta intake due to having diabetes 2. Karlynn, I want you to know that I made a recipe page with your URL for this recipe beneath the recipe title. I included a small photo of the soup attached on the left of the recipe page just above the list of ingredients. I attached a note telling my children & friends to check out your site because all of your recipes are so delicious! I sent it to 12 people that I know love savory soups! IF it were possible I would have given you 12 stars for this recipe! It will definitely be in the rotation of my soups this fall and winter. My thanks to you Karlynn & Mike for all of the hard work & love that you into your food blog with all of your scrumptious recipes!5 stars

  2. Suzin says

    I’ve always been sceptical about lemon chicken soup, but I was compelled to try this because it was on Karlynn’s site. Delicious! I baked a couple of boneless chicken breasts, didn’t add spinach because I didn’t have on hand. I would suggest, if you’re planning on leftovers, don’t add all the orzo. I did. It expanded and soaked up most of the broth. Still delicious ?5 stars

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