Rice Pilaf with Orzo

Rice Pilaf Recipe

What is Rice Pilaf?

There are many varieties of rice pilav in Turkey. Turkish rice pilaf recipe has a rich variety of types with olive oil, vegetable, orzo or lentil. The most popular and classic of these is rice pilaf with orzo. Usually prepared with butter, but olive oil can also be preferred. The name “Rice pilaf” may not be familiar to you because the name “pilaf” comes from “pilav” in Turkish. In fact, a meal called “rice” can also mean a pilaf. However, it is called “Pilaf” or “Pilau” in English. Without worrying about words, I invite you to the next paragraph to talk about rice pilaf recipe 🙂

What are the cooking tips for Rice Pilaf?

Orzo in its content is actually a kind of pasta. Before the rice is added, the orzo is roasted and then the rice is added and cooked together. It is a good match with rice, but if you cannot find it, you can do it without adding. In Turkish pilaf, unlike other pilafs, the rice grains are expected to be shiny and not stick together. To achieve this, it is necessary to fry the rice well, squeeze a drop of lemon after adding the water and adjust the amount of water well. If you add less water, the rice grains will be hard, and if too much, sticky.

Cooking time also plays an important role here. When the water at the base of the rice runs out, you need to turn off the fire and leave it to rest. This rice pilaf recipe, which is very easy in theory, can give different results in each preparation. This depends entirely on the cooking and the type of rice. The rice you use should not be sticky and should have medium-long grains. If possible, you can obtain this type of rice from a Turkish market.  You can serve a nice dinner with Turkish Bean Stew.

Rice Pilaf Recipe

Rice Pilaf Recipe

You will definitely love this delicious pilaf from the combination of butter and rice
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Resting Time 15 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Dinner, Side Dish
Cuisine Mediterranean, Turkish
Servings 2 people
Calories 326 kcal


  • 1 cup rice (Medium grain, non sticky white)
  • 1.75 cups water or chicken broth
  • 2 tbsp orzo
  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp salt


  • Put the rice in a fine perforated colander and rinse it well with warm water.
  • While the rice is draining, add the oil to a pan and heat it for a minute.
  • Add the orzo in the pan and fry until it turns brown. Be careful not to overcook it.
  • Before adding rice, make sure that it is not too wet. After the orzo toasted enough, firstly add butter, then the rice on it.
  • Cook the mixture for a while. You should roast by stirring constantly for about 2-3 minutes. Don't use too high heat, you don't want butter to burn.
  • Slowly add the water, add the salt and mix gently. Cover the lid and cook on medium-high heat until boiling, then on low heat after it starts boiling.
  • Cook until the rice completely absorbs the water. It takes about 15 minutes. You can open the lid and look at the bottom of the pot with a spoon. When ready, let it rest covered for a while. After resting, mix it with a wooden spoon.


  • Goes well with legume dishes, chicken or beef saute.
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