Lemon Orzo Bowls with Lamb & Tzatziki

Lemon Orzo Bowls with Lamb & Tzatziki are a Greek-inspired healthy dinner that’s got the flavors of a gyro sandwich, all piled into one bowl.

I teamed up with the American Lamb board to bring you this post. As always, all opinions are my own.

Who’s ready for Spring? 

In particular, I’m ready to create more dishes that taste light and fresh, and feature lots of color. Enter these Greek lemon orzo bowls. Just look at the prettiness…

These bowls take a bit of inspiration from gyro sandwiches. 

Gyros are traditionally made with either lamb or chicken and served on pita bread with lots of tzatziki (a cucumber-yogurt sauce), a bit of lettuce and a sprinkling of tomatoes. 

I’m swapping out the pita bread for a yummy Greek lemon orzo. It’s tangy, delicious and the perfect base for all the ingredients we’re piling on top. 

I love that you can make these from start to finish in just about 30 minutes too. 

What does ground lamb taste like? 

Lamb has a delicious, bold, meaty flavor that is a great addition to dishes. 

I love using ground lamb in all kinds of recipes – from these Red Wine Lamb Burgers, to Baked Feta Pasta and even these Lamb Dumplings in Spicy Ginger Broth

The flavor of ground lamb is super versatile and affordable too. 

Overhead close up of lemon orzo with ground lamb.

I like to cook with American Lamb. Here’s why:

  1. By choosing American Lamb, you’re supporting local farmers and ranchers throughout the US.
  2. Raising lamb in the US is a family affair with more than 80,000 family owned operations.
  3. Sheep improve pasture quality by recycling vital nutrients back into the soil, minimizing erosion and encouraging plant growth.
  4. The majority of sheep in the states graze pastures for most of their lives.

What spices go best with lamb? 

A classic flavor that compliments lamb is mint. I’m especially obsessed with these Lamb Chops with Mint Mustard Sauce. However, lamb is super flexible and delicious with so many spices. Here, I’m going the Mediterranean route and adding in some garlic, oregano, dill and cumin. 


  • Lamb – Feel free to use your favorite cut of lamb here. 
  • Orzo – Feel free to swap out the orzo for rice, quinoa or even cauliflower rice. 
  • Tzatziki – I made the tzatziki sauce from scratch. But you can also buy it pre-made in the store (look for it near the hummus). 
  • Toppings – Feel free to pile on your favorite toppings. Pickled onions, hummus, sliced peppers, mushrooms, arugula and spinach all make great options! 

Can you make them ahead of time? 

You sure can! These bowls are great for meal prep. Since it’s just the two of us at home, I’ll normally have a couple extra servings to enjoy lunches during the week. I just store the tzatziki separately. When I’m ready to eat, I just pop the orzo and lamb into the microwave, then top with the sauce and veggies. 

Hands holding bowl of lemon orzo with toppings.

Wine Pairings for Mediterranean Lamb Bowls:

  • A light fruity red wine, such as Beaujolais, won’t overpower the fresh flavors in this dish
  • A dry Rosé will also pair well with these quinoa bowls.

More ground lamb recipes: 

More bowl recipes:

Overhead shot of lemon orzo dressed with tzatziki, cucumber slices, lemons and lamb.

Lemon Orzo Bowls with Lamb & Tzatziki

Lemon Orzo Bowls with Lamb & Tzatziki are a Greek-inspired healthy dinner that’s got the flavors of a gyro sandwich, all piled into one bowl.
5 from 2 votes
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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 people


Tzatziki Sauce:

  • ½ cup grated cucumber
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic (minced or grated)
  • ¼ cup fresh mint and dill leaves (chopped)
  • 1 cup full-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice


  • 1/2 pound orzo (uncooked)
  • 1 Tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large lemon (zested)


  • 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ medium onion (diced)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced or grated)
  • 1 pound ground American lamb
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

To Garnish:

  • 8 ounces feta cheese (cubed or crumbled)
  • Fresh dill
  • Fresh mint
  • Cucumbers (sliced)
  • Red onions (minced)
  • Cherry tomatoes (halved)
  • Lemon wedges


  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  • Meanwhile, make the tzatziki sauce.
  • Place cucumber in a strainer and salt it with 1 tsp kosher salt. Let it drain for 20 minutes, then press out all of the excess liquids with the back of a spoon. Combine the cucumber with the remaining ingredients and refrigerate until ready to serve.
  • Add the grated cucumber and kosher salt to a strainer and by combining all ingredients in a medium bowl. Stir to combine and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside while you prepare the remaining ingredients.
  • Add the orzo to the boiling water and cook for about 10 minutes, until al dente. Drain and drizzle with olive oil. Add lemon zest and season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  • While the orzo is cooking, heat 1 TBSP olive oil in a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook until translucent, 2-3 minutes. Add garlic and cook 30 seconds longer, until fragrant.
  • Add lamb, cumin and oregano and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook, breaking up with a spoon until fully cooked, about 8-10 minutes.
  • Serve over the orzo. Garnish with tzatziki, feta, fresh mint & dill, cucumbers, red onions, and tomatoes, as desired. Serve with lemon wedges on the side. Enjoy!


Make Ahead: Store the tzatziki separately. When ready to eat, just pop the orzo and lamb into the microwave, then top with the sauce and veggies.
Note: USDA requires ground lamb reach an internal temperature of 160F.
Did you make this recipe?Mention @platingsandpairings or tag #platingsandpairings!


Box Grater
Large Pot
Medium Bowl
Large Skillet


Calories: 787kcal | Carbohydrates: 49g | Protein: 40g | Fat: 47g | Saturated Fat: 20g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 19g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 136mg | Sodium: 1319mg | Potassium: 554mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 267IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 383mg | Iron: 4mg

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