Chicken Orzo Dill Feta

This dish is warm, creamy, and refreshing and comes together in a few minutes. Each bite brings me back to the warm breezes and delectable flavors of the Greek Isles.


  • 4-6 chicken thighs, bone-in with skin
  • 2 lemons, scrubbed and juiced, about 1/2 cup
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced, or more if you love garlic
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1 medium yellow or white onion, peeled, and coarsely chopped
  • 2 cups dry orzo
  • 3 cups chicken or vegetable broth, plus more if needed
  • 1 large seedless cucumber, or 2 smaller cucumbers, preferably with thin skin and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill, about 4 sprigs, chopped
  • 5 ounces feta cheese (not crumbles)


  1. In a bowl large enough to hold the chicken thighs, add the lemon juice, 2 tablespoons olive oil, minced garlic, salt and several cranks of fresh black pepper.
  2. Toss to incorporate, cover, and pop into the refrigerator to marinate for at least 30 minutes or make ahead and let marinate overnight.
  3. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Remove the chicken from the marinade and place in the hot pan. Cook for 5-6 minutes or until browned. Flip the thighs and cook for another 4-5 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate and set aside.
  4. Add the chopped onion to the pan and stir well to coat the onions in the remaining fat. Decrease heat to medium-low, cover, and cook until soft, about 3-4 minutes.
  5. Stir in the orzo and combine with the onions and fat. Slowly pour in the broth and stir again. Simmer the orzo, stirring a few times, for about 5-6 minutes or until the orzo has partly absorbed the broth.
  6. Place the chicken thighs skin-side-up over the orzo and cover. Cook about 15-20 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and the liquid is absorbed.
  7. Uncover and remove pan from the heat. Evenly spread the cucumber and dill over the chicken, then crumble feta on top. Taste for additional seasoning and serve warm.


Do not use pre-crumbled feta cheese. They do not melt to create the creamy consistency essential in this dish.