Orzo With Crispy Cabbage and Lemon and Pine Nuts

It’s hard not to fall into the trap of eating the same lunch everyday. I work from home and when I’m busy, it’s often tempting to rustle up the same old sandwich, most days.

Staying inspired 5-days per week isn’t easy, which is why I love James Ramsden’s amazing cookbook, Love Your Lunchbox: 101 Do-ahead Recipes to Liven Up Lunchtime!

This fab book is a real must-read for us #mumbosses! Packed full of nutritious, healthy recipes with everything from ‘super noodles’ to nutritious salads and belly busting sarnies, you’ll never be bored about your lunch again.

I can’t eat pine nuts so don’t use them here and I omit the cheese.

I also have a copy of his book to giveaway too! You can enter at the end of this post!

Over to James…

Amazing how easy it is to borrow a recipe without realising it. I’m not entirely sure where this recipe came from, possibly just some strange and hungry backwater of my mind. Orzo is a kind of pasta that looks like fat grains of rice. If you can’t find it, use macaroni instead.

After cooking it one evening, however, my wife Rosie pointed out that there is a recipe in her own book, The Recipe Wheel, that is nigh-on identical, save for the fact that she uses macaroni instead. So there you go. It’s still here because, well, it’s rather nice. But thanks to ‘Ro’ for the idea.

Orzo With Crispy Cabbage and Lemon and Pine Nuts

Ingredients (Serves 2)

Prep time: 5 minutes | Cooking time: 10 minutes | Freezable? No

  • 200g/7oz orzo
  • salt and pepper
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 200g/7oz savoy cabbage, very finely sliced
  • zest and juice of ½ lemon
  • 1 tbsp pine nuts
  • grated Parmesan cheese, to serve


  1. Bring a pan of salted water to a boil and cook the orzo according to packet instructions. Drain and run under a cold tap until cool.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large frying pan or saucepan over a medium–high heat, and briefly fry the garlic.
  3. Add the cabbage and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 5–7 minutes, stirring frequently, until the cabbage is cooked and crisp here and there.
  4. Stir in the lemon zest and juice and set aside.
  5. In a dry frying pan, toast the pine nuts over a medium–high heat, taking care not to burn. Stir these and the cabbage through the pasta. Leave to cool and store in the fridge for up to 3 days.


A portion of orzo salad; grated Parmesan.


Serve with a little grated Parmesan.

Love your Lunchbox by James Ramsden, published by Pavilion Books. Images by Martin Poole.

To win a copy of Love your Lunchbox worth £16.99 enter via The Rafflecopter below:

Love your Lunchbox by James Ramsden

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119 Responses

  1. Hannah

    I made this tonight for tea. Oh. My Goodness! So easy, delicious and nutritious! Definitely making this again 🙂

  2. Karen Painter

    I need some new ideas or our lunch boxes and this seems to be the perfect source.

  3. Maureen Parker

    Love to win a cookbook that gives me easy to pack into my lunch box

  4. Suzanne Brown

    I need to eat healthy lunches – I often resort to crisps and biscuits in a rush

  5. Ruth Wollerton

    I would love to win to SPICE UP my lunchtimes with Yumminess. Thank you xxx

  6. Jo Carter

    Always looking for really tasty pack lunch and it looks like this will hit the spot

  7. Terrie-Ann Wright

    I am after some new inspiration for lunch box meals for work for 2017.

  8. Jade Pawley

    I’m learning how to cook at the moment so this would be a great help!


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