Dairy Farmers of Canada

Fresh Pesto Beans & Greens Orzo

This recipe is taken from the 2016 Milk Calendar. Eat your greens and beans, now with pesto. It’s the ideal way to start your summer with this garden-fresh recipe that you can make in no time flat.

  • Prep: 15 min
  • Cooking: 15 min
Yields 4 Servings
fresh pesto beans greens orzo


  • 1/4 lb (115 g) yellow beans trimmed
  • 1/4 lb (115 g) green beans trimmed
  • 2 cups (500 mL) orzo
  • 1 cup (250 mL) frozen shelled edamame
  • 4 tsp (20 mL) Butter
  • 4 tsp (20 mL) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt
  • 1 1/2 cups (375 mL) Milk
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) homemade or store-bought basil pesto
  • 4 cups (1 L) baby greens such as kale, spinach, arugula or a mix of your choice
  • 3 tbsp (45 mL) finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes in oil patted dry
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) snipped fresh chives, chopped basil or your choice of fresh herbs
  • Shaved Canadian Parmesan for serving
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Cut beans in half or thirds depending on bean size. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook orzo for 6 min. Add beans and edamame; continue to cook 2 to 3 min until orzo and beans are tender. Drain well and return to pot.

In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Sprinkle with flour and salt; cook, whisking about 1 min. Gradually whisk in milk. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat. Whisk for 3 to 5 min or until smooth and slightly thickened. Whisk in pesto.

Add sauce to orzo mixture along with greens and sun-dried tomatoes. Season with pepper. Stir 2 min over medium heat until greens are wilted and mixture is coated. Serve sprinkled with herbs and shaved Parmesan.


Substitute peas for edamame.

Edamame (soybeans) are often served salted as a snack in Japanese restaurants. Look for them shelled in the freezer section of your supermarket.

Serve with grilled shrimp on skewers or add leftover chicken.

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Nutritional information

Per serving
Energy: 531 Calories
Protein: 20 g
Carbohydrate: 78 g
Fat: 16 g
Fibre: 6 g
Sodium: 330 mg

Top 5 Nutrients

(% DV*)
Calcium: 20 % / 219 mg
Vitamin C: