Thursday, September 19, 2013

Custardy Baked Orzo with Bacon and Spinach

When I saw this recipe, I immediately knew it was something I wanted to try, and something I would like. I was right. I ate it for breakfast one day and lunch the next. A traditional egg bake is bulked up with pasta and filled with nutrient-dense spinach and crunchy bacon. This could be a really versatile dish, too - I bet Italian sausage would be a great sub, and you could add peppers, mushrooms and other vegetables and reduce the amount of pasta a bit. Lots of possibilities here from a great base recipe. And since it has eggs and cheese, it's perfect for this month's Improv Challenge!

Cook the orzo in a large pot of boiling water.

Cook the bacon - first cut it into bite sized pieces,

then cook it in a large pan over medium heat until crisp. Transfer the bacon to a paper-towel lined plate,

then remove most of the bacon grease from the pan - leave about 1 tablespoon in the pan. Add the onion and cook for a few minutes til it begins to soften. Then add the spinach to the pan

and cook and stir until it is wilted. Transfer the spinach and onion mixture into a large bowl. Drain the orzo and add it to the bowl,

along with the bacon and the feta.

In a large measuring cup, combine the yogurt, milk and eggs, and season with salt and pepper.

Whisk well, then add to the spinach and feta mixture.

Stir everything together well,

then transfer to a greased 11x7 baking dish.

Bake for 45 minutes, or until the eggs are set and the top is slightly browned.

Let the dish sit for 10 minutes after baking before you cut and serve it.

One year ago: Peach Cobbler Bars
Two years ago: Pumpkin Seed Crusted Tilapia
Three years ago: Peanut Butter Cupcakes
Four years ago: Caramel Banana Sundaes

Check out the linky below for more pasta and cheese combos. And get more inspiration at Full Plate Thursday, Showcase your Talent, Thursdays Treasures, Foodie Friday, Food on Fridays, Foodtastic Friday, Foodie Friday (#2), Friday Flash, TGIF, Friday Food Frenzy.

Custardy Baked Orzo with Bacon and Spinach

1 cup orzo
8 ounces bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 cup diced onion
8 ounces baby spinach
3 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
4 large eggs
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/2 cup milk

In a large saucepan of salted boiling water, cook the orzo until al dente. Drain and transfer to a medium bowl.

In a large skillet, cook the bacon over medium heat until crispy. Remove the bacon to a paper-towel lined plate, and leave 1 tablespoon of fat in the skillet. Add the onion to the skillet and cook over medium heat until softened, 4-5 minutes. Then add the spinach to the skillet and cook until wilted. Transfer the spinach and onion mixture to a large bowl. Drain the orzo, then add it to the bowl, along with the cooked bacon and the feta.

In a large measuring cup, whisk the eggs with the yogurt and milk, season with salt and pepper and stir into the orzo. Scrape the mixture into an greased 11-by-7-inch baking dish and bake at 375 for about 45 minutes, until the eggs are set and the top is browned. Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting and serving. Makes 6-8 servings.

Recipe Source: Adapted from Food and Wine


  1. Bacon... spinach... feta... How perfect is that?! I wonder how this would cook up in my crockpot? (Still too hot here in the desert to use the oven :( Can't wait for cooler weather!)

    1. I think it would work great in the crock pot! Let me know if you try it.

  2. What a great orzo dish. I think it's a very under-utilized pasta. It's nice to see a couple of dishes using it this month!

  3. Yum, love that you made your pasta dish into a casserole. Perfect for the upcoming season.

  4. this looks delicious! I need to try it. I just bought a giant jug of orzo!

  5. Looks fantastic... great for a brunch. Thanks for sharing your recipe with us on foodie friday.

  6. What an awesome flavor your Baked Orzo with Bacon will have, can't wait to taste it. Thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday and have a great week!
    Miz Helen

  7. Love the ingredients you have going on here!! Oh my goodness, it sounds wonderful and so easy to make also. Yum!


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