Orzo Mushroom Fritters with Balsamic Dipping Sauce


This recipe for orzo mushroom fritters is a “30 minutes or less” entry in the Fast & Fresh Dairy-Free Time Trials Recipe Contest, submitted by reader Mimi Chang. For the fritters themselves, she uses Culinary Coconut Milk from So Delicious.

Orzo Mushroom Fritters with Dipping Sauce

Fast and Fresh Dairy Free Time Trials Recipe ContestMimi says, “The original recipe I came up for these mushroom fritters included parmesan cheese. For this contest, I experimented with making the fritters dairy-free by omitting the cheese and adding coconut milk (I always loved Thai dishes that incorporated coconut milk with mushrooms so I knew that this pairing worked). My family and I decided that we prefer the dairy-free version over the original parmesan ones! The coconut milk adds a silkiness and a subtle sweetness that brings the fritters to a new level. The fritters come out hot and crunchy and the dipping sauce adds a brightness.”

For more details and to enter the recipe contest, see this post: https://www.godairyfree.org/news/dairy-free-time-trials-recipe-contest

Special Diet Notes & Options: Orzo Mushroom Fritters

By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, gluten-free optional, nut-free, peanut-free, soy-free, and vegetarian.

Orzo Mushroom Fritters with Balsamic Dipping Sauce
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
For Fritters:
  • 3 tablespoon coconut oil, divided (plus more for frying)
  • ¾ cup uncooked orzo (gluten-free, if needed)
  • 1-1/2 cups water
  • 4 ounces mushrooms, diced (I included the stems)
  • 4 tablespoons So Delicious Dairy Free Original Culinary Coconut Milk
  • 2-1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • ½ tablespoon dried basil leaves
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Dash of black pepper
  • 1 egg (lightly beaten)
For Dipping Sauce:
  • ½ cup coconut oil
  • 4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoons dried basil leaves
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a wide pot (I use a 3.5 quart saucepan) over medium high heat. Add orzo, mix to coat with oil. Stir often allowing orzo to toast golden brown, about 3 minutes.
  2. Turn heat off and add the water to the orzo (be careful of the steam that arises as the pot is hot). Cover and bring to a boil. Turn heat down and simmer covered for 7 minutes and then uncover and simmer for another 3 minutes (much if not all the water will have dissipated in the pot).
  3. While orzo is cooking, sauté mushrooms in the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil over high heat in a nonstick pan. Allow the mushroom to brown and release moisture, about 5 minutes.
  4. Then, mix together the ingredients for dipping sauce in small bowl.
  5. Once orzo is cooked, drain well and shake dry.
  6. In a medium sized bowl, mix the orzo, cooked mushrooms, coconut milk, cornstarch, basil and salt and pepper. Add egg last and incorporate.
  7. In same pan the mushrooms were cooked in, heat 2 tablespoons of oil over medium high heat. Drop about 2 tablespoons of the batter ("eyeball" it) for each fritter into the pan. With spatula, gently round out the edges and flatten each of the fritters to about ¼ inch thickness. After about a minute and a half to two minutes, you will feel that the bottom of each fritter has gotten solid and has browned enough to flip. Carefully flip (I found that the thinner the spatula, the better), and cook for another minute and half to two minutes. Place fritters on plate lined with paper towel. It will take 2 batches to go through the batter (add another 2T of oil to the pan before starting the second batch).
  8. Serve with dipping sauce. Voila!

About Author

Alisa is the founder of GoDairyFree.org, Food Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living, and the new cookbook, Eat Dairy Free: Your Essential Cookbook for Everyday Meals, Snacks, and Sweets. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.


    • Hi Jan, yes, most orzo is, but there are gluten-free ones available! Sorry for the confusion, I’ve updated with a link to gluten-free options. You could also use rice instead.

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