This velvety orzo pasta is loaded with veggies (roasted butternut squash, spinach, and garlic) and takes just thirty minutes. It’s a best supper for hectic household weeknights when you’re yearning home cooking on a cold Fall or Winter season night. Serve this relaxing meal as a meatless main dish or as a side meal along with your preferred proteins (chicken, beef, pork, seafood).

Orzo pasta

What makes this 30-minute supper various from your typical velvety pasta recipes is that it’s loaded with fresh veggies, such as roasted butternut squash and spinach, and there’s just 1/2 cup of cream utilized. I utilized store-bought peeled and pre-cut butternut squash which conserved me a lots of time and made the entire recipe a breeze! Perfect for a relaxing household weeknight supper however likewise proper for amusing visitors. Velvety orzo pasta likewise works fantastic as a side meal to prepared or grilled meats (chicken, beef, steak, lamb, pork) or seafood (shrimp, salmon, scallops). You can make this year-round (not simply throughout Fall and Winter season) and utilize sweet potatoes rather of (more seasonal) butternut squash. For more orzo pasta motivation, have a look at these 2 recipes: Creamy Butternut Squash and Sausage Soup with Orzo and Spinach and Creamy Chicken Orzo with Veggies.

creamy orzo pasta with butternut squash and spinach in a white bowl.

Why you’ll enjoy it

  • Easy 30-minute recipe. Roast the peeled and cubed butternut squash in the oven while you make velvety orzo pasta with spinach in the frying pan on the stovetop. Whatever comes together in simply thirty minutes. This recipe is even faster if your regional shop brings pre-cut peeled butternut squash.
  • Tasty meatless supper. If you’re trying to find a meatless recipe that is filling, scrumptious, and not dull, this butternut squash and spinach orzo may turn into one of your brand-new favorites! It’s a Fall and Winter season home cooking that you can make year-round (and utilize sweet potatoes rather of butternut squash when it’s not in season).
  • Healthy home cooking. Although this velvety orzo pasta is pure home cooking, it is likewise loaded with veggies. You can even double the quantity of veggies if you like to make it much healthier!

What is orzo?

Orzo is a short-cut pasta looking like long-grain rice fit.  It is made from flour, like typical pasta.  Frequently, orzo is made with semolina (durum wheat utilized for making pasta).

What kind of orzo to utilize?

Some shops use various sizes of orzo.  I choose the sort of orzo that is bigger in size. In this recipe, I utilized orzo by Delallo brand name, Number 65 cut.  It was bigger than other orzo sizes provided at my regional shop.

How to prepare orzo

  1. Integrate orzo and water in a deep pan or big high-sided frying pan in a 1:2 ratio. For instance, integrate together 1 cup of orzo with 2 cups of chicken stock.
  2. Prepare on a low simmer for about 5 or 10 minutes or longer till the orzo is totally prepared through. Stir periodically, so that the orzo does not get stayed with the bottom of the pan.
  3. If the liquid takes in too quick and the orzo is not prepared yet, include 1/4 cup of liquid and continue simmering till the orzo is soft and all the liquid is taken in. Include more liquid, if required.

Main ingredients

  • Orzo is an essential food of Italian food. This pasta looks like long-grain rice and is simple to prepare!
  • Spinach. I utilized fresh spinach and prepared it right in the exact same pan as the orzo pasta. You can likewise utilize frozen spinach – defrosted and drained pipes of any liquid.
  • Butternut squash I utilized store-bought peeled and pre-cut butternut squash that made this recipe actually fast and simple to assemble. If you have entire butternut squash, I suggest that you peel it and cube it ahead of time.
  • Cream. I utilized just & frac12; cup of whipping cream to include a touch of creaminess.
  • Flavorings utilized to make this velvety orzo pasta with butternut squash and spinach delicious consist of smoked paprika, Italian spices, minced garlic, salt, pepper, and fresh thyme.

How to make velvety orzo pasta (the introduction)

Here is the recipe in a nutshell. For a breakdown of ingredients and recipe guidelines, scroll down to the recipe card listed below.

1) Roast butternut squash ( peeled, cubed, and tossed with olive oil, newly thyme, salt, and pepper) on a parchment paper-lined flat pan in the preheated oven at 400 F for about 20 or thirty minutes. Continue with the remainder of the recipe while the squash remains in the oven.

2) Prepare orzo with minced garlic, flavorings, and chicken stock in a big high-sided frying pan in a 1:2 ratio (1 cup of orzo with 2 cups of chicken stock) for about 5 or 10 minutes till totally prepared through.

3) Include spinach to the frying pan and cook till it wilts.

4) Put together the meal by including roasted butternut squash to the velvety orzo pasta frying pan. Season with salt and pepper. Leading with fresh thyme.

creamy orzo pasta with butternut squash and spinach - close-up photo.

Cooking Tips

  • Utilize a high-sided, heavy-bottomed frying pan such as a cast-iron frying pan or a good-quality stainless-steel pan. This will assist prevent the burn areas and will guarantee even cooking without food getting stayed with the bottom of the pan.
  • Make this recipe gluten-free by utilizing long rice rather of orzo.
  • Decrease calories by utilizing sliced cauliflower or cauliflower rice rather of orzo.
  • Toppings. When serving, you can include grated Parmesan cheese, red pepper flakes, fresh herbs, or broken black pepper to the orzo pasta.
  • Make ahead idea. Roast butternut squash cubes as much as 2 days ahead. Keep them cooled in an airtight container till prepared to utilize.

Variations and alternatives

  • Pasta. If you can’t discover orzo, you can utilize any other sort of short-cut pasta, such as bow-tie (farfalle), fusilli, orecchiette, rotini, or rigatoni. If utilizing this sort of pasta, you may need to prepare it as you would generally prepare pasta – in a big pot of boiling water – and just then include it to this recipe.
  • Usage other greens. Swiss chard, arugula, or kale will work fantastic in this recipe besides spinach.
  • An excellent replacement for butternut squash is sweet potatoes. By doing this you can make this recipe year-round by utilizing sweet potatoes when the butternut squash is not in season.
  • Include sausage or chicken. I suggest hot Italian sausage, chicken sausage, or skinless boneless chicken thighs. You can likewise plant-based sausage such as Beyond sausage brand name.

How to garnish orzo pasta

Garnish orzo pasta with newly grated Parmesan cheese and newly ground black pepper. Other fantastic garnishes are red pepper flakes, sliced chives, sliced fresh herbs (parsley, basil, thyme, cilantro), sliced green onions, chives, or toasted pine nuts.

Storage Tips

  • Refrigerator. Shop the remaining velvety orzo pasta in an airtight container in the fridge for as much as 3 days.
  • Freezer.  Freeze the leftovers in an airtight container for as much as 2 months.
  • Reheat in the microwave. Reheat the cooled leftovers in a microwave for about 1 minute. Taste and reheat for 30 additional seconds or more, if required. You may need to include a percentage of milk or cream if the orzo is too thick.
  • Reheat on the stovetop. Reheat it in a big, high-sided frying pan on the stovetop on low-medium heat. Include a percentage of chicken stock, milk, cream, or just water to thin out the sauce.

What to serve with it?

  • Bread. Velvety orzo pasta sets well with baguette, garlic bread, olive bread, or sourdough bread.
  • My salad suggestions.  Serve it with an easy spinach salad with pine nuts and Parmesan or cranberry spinach salad with cashews and goat cheese.  Or, set the pasta with the vibrant and easy-to-make arugula salad with apples, cranberries, and pecans.

Other orzo pasta recipes you may like

  • Creamy Butternut Squash Orzo with Sausage
  • Italian Sausage Orzo Soup with Mushrooms
  • Creamy Chicken Orzo with Butternut Squash and Spinach
  • Butternut Squash and Black Bean Orzo with Sausage
  • Creamy Butternut Squash and Sausage Soup with Orzo and Spinach


Creamy Orzo Pasta

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This velvety orzo pasta is loaded with veggies (roasted butternut squash, spinach, and garlic)! The recipe takes just thirty minutes and is best for hectic household weeknights when you’re yearning home cooking on a cold Fall or Winter season night. Serve this relaxing meal as a meatless main dish or as a side meal along with your preferred proteins (chicken, beef, pork, seafood).
Course Main Dish
Food American, Italian
Keyword orzo pasta
Preparation Time 5 minutes
Prepare Time 25 minutes
Overall Time 30 minutes
Portions 5 individuals
Calories 411 kcal
Author Julia


Roasted butternut squash

  • 12 oz butternut squash peeled, seeded, and cubed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme ( leaves just, no sprigs)


  • 1.5 cup orzo raw
  • 5 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2.5 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian spices
  • 5 oz spinach fresh
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • salt and pepper
  • fresh thyme


Roast Butternut Squash

  • Preheat the oven to 400 F.
  • Toss cubed butternut squash with olive oil, salt, pepper, and fresh thyme on a parchment paper-lined flat pan. Spread it in one layer, without overcrowding.
  • Roast in the preheated oven on the middle rack at 400 F for 20 or thirty minutes. Get rid of from oven.
  • Continue with the remainder of the recipe while you roast the squash.

Prepare orzo

  • To a big, high-sided frying pan, include 1 cup of raw orzo, 5 cloves of minced garlic, 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika, and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Prepare the orzo on medium heat, stirring, for about 3 minutes till browned.
  • Include 2 cups of chicken stock, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon Italian spices to the frying pan with orzo. Give a boil, then decrease to a simmer and cook for about 5 or 10 minutes, periodically stirring to avoid the orzo from adhering to the bottom of the pan, till the orzo is prepared through.
  • Include spinach, and stir it in till it wilts on low-medium heat.
  • Include 1/2 cup of whipping cream, and stir to integrate. Season with salt and pepper, if required.


  • Include roasted butternut squash to the prepared orzo. Leading with fresh thyme.


Calories: 411 kcal| Carbohydrates: 49 g| Protein: 11 g| Fat: 19 g| Hydrogenated Fat: 7 g| Polyunsaturated Fat: 2 g| Monounsaturated Fat: 9 g| Cholesterol: 30 mg| Salt: 439 mg| Potassium: 681 mg| Fiber: 4 g| Sugar: 5 g| Vitamin A: 10430 IU| Vitamin C: 28 mg| Calcium: 110 mg| Iron: 3 mg

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