These vegan stuffed tomatoes have a delicious filling of pesto orzo cooked risotto-style so that it’s nice and creamy. Serve these tasty stuffed tomatoes as an appetizer, side dish or main dish with a salad and crusty bread on the side!
This summer has been “the summer of the stuffed tomato” as I had an exceptionally good tomato harvest from my garden. I stuffed them with TVP, potatoes and rice but these pesto orzo stuffed tomatoes turned out to be my favourite recipe of the summer.
How to make vegan stuffed tomatoes
To make this vegan recipe you’ll need to start with a vegan pesto. If you can’t buy a prepared vegan pesto at your supermarket, it’s super easy to make at home. Use your favourite recipe or take a look at mine linked above.
Choose some nice ripe tomatoes, mine were not exceptionally large, just medium sized. Slice the top off and scoop out the flesh.
Sprinkle the insides with a bit of salt and turn them upside down on a plate to drain out the excess liquid.
Sometimes when I make stuffed tomatoes I chop up the tomato insides to use in the filling as well. For this recipe I didn’t feel like the pulp would go well in the filling so I left it out. I later used the pulp when making tomato sauce for pasta. You could also blend it into a smoothie or add it to Spanish gazpacho, for example.
Now prepare the orzo. There are many different ways to cook orzo. You can simply boil it in abundant water like pasta, boil it in the exact amount of water like rice, or cook it in a pan like risotto.
For this recipe I opted for the latter. Cooking it in stock adds more flavour and stirring it while it cooks releases the starches to result in a creamy finish.
Don’t worry though, cooking orzo risotto-style is not a time-consuming process. Orzo is quick cooking and it should be ready in less than 10 minutes when cooked this way.
Once your orzo is ready, stir through your vegan pesto. This pesto orzo is amazingly delicious and would make a good side dish just on its own!
Stuff the pesto orzo into your empty tomatoes and bake until tender. You can eat these vegan stuffed tomatoes as they are or garnish them with a sprinkling of fresh basil or grated vegan cheese. I used the vegan Parmesan from Violife (I was not paid to mention this product).
- 6 medium tomatoes
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 tablespoon oil
- ½ medium onion, finely diced
- ¾ cup uncooked orzo
- 1 ¼ cup vegetable stock
- 4 tablespoons vegan pesto
1. Slice the tops off the tomatoes and use a spoon to scoop out the pulp and seeds. Sprinkle the insides of the tomatoes with salt and turn them upside down on a plate to drain.
2. Preheat the oven to 350 F / 175 C.
3. Heat the oil in a medium pan over medium heat. Add the onion and fry until transparent and soft. Reduce the heat to medium-low, add the orzo and toast, stirring, for a minute. Add about ¼ cup of the stock and stir constantly until absorbed. Continue adding the stock ¼ cup at a time, constantly stirring, until the orzo is soft and creamy – 7 to 10 minutes.
4. Stir though the pesto. Taste and add salt and pepper. You can also add more pesto if yours is not very strong.
5. Place the tomatoes into a baking dish and fill each one with pesto orzo. Put the tops back on and bake until the tomatoes are tender – 25 to 30 minutes.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 143Total Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gSodium: 552mgCarbohydrates: 15gFiber: 2gSugar: 4gProtein: 4g