Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup – Instant Pot & Stovetop Directions

This Instant Pot Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup is cozy and comforting, but the bright, fresh flavor of the lemon makes it taste just a little like spring.

Image of Instant Pot Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup taken from above with spoons

Winter this year in Michigan has been absolutely relentless. Sub-zero temps, freezing rain, ice storms, and soooo muchhhh snowwww. I’m not a person that loves soup…I can take it or leave it and it definitely isn’t something I crave, but this winter has been a big encouragement to create lots of new soup recipes. 

I’ve been using my Instant Pot so much that my stove is getting a little jealous. This soup could easily be made on the stovetop, but I’d argue it’s even easier to make in the Instant Pot. 

This Instant Pot Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup is cozy and comforting, but the bright, fresh flavor of the lemon makes it taste just a little like spring.

With all the sickness floating around our house, we need all the soup we can get, and the lemon in this chicken orzo soup is perfect for those runny nose, coughs, and sore throats. First E’s pneumonia, now Ben is sick. FUN TIMES. 

Spring….where are you? We all need you. Michigan needs you! 

In the meantime, soup it is. 

This Instant Pot Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup is cozy and comforting, but the bright, fresh flavor of the lemon makes it taste just a little like spring.

About this Instant Pot Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup

This Instant Pot Lemon Chicken Orzo soup is a twist on a classic chicken noodle soup. I get so bored with chicken noodle soup sometimes so it was fun to mix it up a little with this recipe. 

Side note: I do also have an Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup recipe if you are looking for something more traditional. 

This Instant Pot Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup is cozy and comforting, but the bright, fresh flavor of the lemon makes it taste just a little like spring.

This soup has all the cozy comforts you want in a chicken noodle soup…tender shredded chicken, lots of vegetables, pasta, and warm, soothing broth. However, the broth is brightened up by lots of fresh lemon juice and a little dill (I unapologetically love dill, if you haven’t noticed). 

The orzo nuzzles into your spoon perfectly with the vegetables and chicken, so you get a perfect bite with all the ingredients each time. 

This Instant Pot Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup is cozy and comforting, but the bright, fresh flavor of the lemon makes it taste just a little like spring.

How to make this Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup on the stove: 

Although it kind of seems like it at this point, I realize not everyone in the world has an Instant Pot or other pressure cooker. This soup is really simple to make on on the stove, too. To speed up cooking time, I recommend dicing the chicken into bite-sized pieces before adding it to the soup. You could cook it whole and shred it if that’s what you prefer, but it will increase the cooking time. You could also use chicken that you pull off a rotisserie chicken if you want to make this a super quick and easy recipe. 

  • In a large stockpot or Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Dice chicken and add diced chicken, celery, onion, salt and pepper. Sauté until onions are translucent. 
  • Add broth, water, lemon juice, dill, and garlic and bring to a boil. 
  • When boiling, add carrots and orzo and cook for 8-10 minutes (or as your orzo package directs), until orzo is al dente. Stir in spinach until wilted, and serve!

It’s very easy whether you make it on the stove or in your pressure cooker. You guys are going to love this one! 

This Instant Pot Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup is cozy and comforting, but the bright, fresh flavor of the lemon makes it taste just a little like spring.

Want to round this out as a nice meal? It would be great with easy homemade bread (from Center Cut Cook) or a great tossed salad with healthy homemade ranch dressing.

More Great Instant Pot Recipes:

Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup

Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 28 minutes
Additional Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 3 minutes
This Instant Pot Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup is cozy and comforting, but the bright, fresh flavor of the lemon makes it taste just a little like spring.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup diced or thinly sliced celery
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 1/2 to 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (2-3 lemons)
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill weed
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 1 cup uncooked orzo
  • 2 large handfuls fresh baby spinach (about 3 cups)

Instructions

Instant Pot Directions

  1. Heat Instant Pot to "Sauté."
  2. Add oil, celery, onion, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until onions are translucent, 3-4 minutes.
  3. Add broth, water, and chicken. Secure lid and turn valve to "seal." Set Instant Pot on Manual (high pressure) for 11 minutes. Quick release pressure when done cooking.
  4. Remove chicken to a plate and turn Instant Pot back to Sauté. Add lemon juice, dill weed, garlic powder, carrots, and orzo. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until noodles are tender, or about 10-12 minutes (check the package for exact cooking time).
  5. Meanwhile, shred chicken with two forks and return to pot when shredded.
  6. When orzo has finished cooking, turn Instant Pot to warm and add spinach and stir to wilt. Taste and adjust seasoning for salt and pepper. You may also add more chicken broth or water if it's thicker than you like.

Stovetop Directions

  1. In a large stockpot or Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Dice chicken and add diced chicken, celery, onion, salt and pepper. Sauté until onions are translucent, 5-6 minutes. 
  2. Add broth, water, lemon juice, dill, and garlic and bring to a boil. 
  3. When boiling, add carrots and orzo and cook for 8-10 minutes (or as your orzo package directs), until orzo is al dente. Stir in spinach until wilted, and serve!

Notes

  • To speed up cooking time when making the stovetop version, I recommend dicing the chicken into bite-sized pieces before adding it to the soup. You could cook it whole and shred it if that's what you prefer, but it will slightly increase the cooking time. You could also use chicken that you pull off a rotisserie chicken if you want to make this a super quick and easy recipe. 

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 442 Total Fat: 9g Saturated Fat: 2g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 5g Cholesterol: 132mg Sodium: 954mg Carbohydrates: 34g Fiber: 3g Sugar: 4g Protein: 54g
RachelCooks.com sometimes provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as they are not calculated by a registered dietician. Please consult a medical professional for any specific nutrition, diet, or allergy advice.
Verdict: Love this recipe so much! I might never go back to “regular” chicken noodle soup ever again. Lemon and dill make everything better.
Husband’s take: I was a little nervous Ben wouldn’t like this, because historically he likes the classics and doesn’t like citrusy twists on them, but to my surprise, he loved this! He always eats all the leftovers.
Changes I would make: None are necessary, but you could add different vegetables, some fresh parsley or fresh dill instead of dried.
Difficulty: Very easy! 

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6 comments

  1. That looks so good and easy.

  2. Amazing recipe! We use our instant pot multiple times a week and this is by far one if our favorite recipes. My husband calls this ‘crack’ soup because he can never get enough.

    Rating: 5
  3. Delicious! I made this for my whole family and we all loved it! Easy to make and quick! I did it in the stovetop. A great twist with different flavors than traditional chicken noodle! 

    Rating: 5

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