👉Comforting Cheesy Orzo with Sausage and Broccoli



Comforting Cheesy Orzo with Sausage and Broccoli

Indulge in a bowl of creamy, cheesy orzo paired with savory sausage and tender broccoli. This recipe is a beloved comfort food in my family, perfect for cozy nights when you need a warm and satisfying meal. Let’s dive into the details to create this delectable dish that’s sure to become a favorite in your home too.

Ingredients Overview

  • Sausage: For this recipe, kielbasa is a fantastic choice due to its smoky flavor and firm texture. You’ll need 2 packs of your favorite sausage.
  • Orzo: This tiny pasta, resembling large grains of rice, offers a delightful texture. One 16oz pack is perfect for this dish.
  • Cheese: A blend of cheddar and Colby Jack provides a rich, creamy finish. Use 2-3 cups of shredded cheese, or more if you love it extra cheesy.
  • Broccoli: Frozen broccoli makes this recipe convenient without sacrificing nutrients. Use 1-2lbs of frozen broccoli florets.
  • Milk: Just a splash to achieve that creamy consistency. A little milk goes a long way.
  • Seasonings: Simple yet essential, add salt and pepper to taste to elevate the flavors.

Step-by-Step Cooking Instructions

1. Prepare the Sausage

  • Cook the sausage: Slice your sausage into bite-sized pieces. In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the sausage until it’s browned and cooked through, about 7-10 minutes. Set aside.

2. Cook the Orzo

  • Boil the orzo: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the orzo and cook according to package instructions, usually about 8-10 minutes.

3. Add the Broccoli

  • Combine with orzo: About 2 minutes before the orzo is fully cooked, add the frozen broccoli directly into the pot. This will cook the broccoli just enough to make it tender.

4. Drain and Mix

  • Drain: Once the orzo and broccoli are cooked, drain them well.
  • Combine ingredients: Return the drained orzo and broccoli to the pot. Add in the cooked sausage and shredded cheese.

5. Finish with Creaminess

  • Stir and melt: Over low heat, stir the mixture until the cheese is fully melted and everything is well combined.
  • Add milk: Pour in a little milk, stirring continuously, until you achieve your desired creaminess.

6. Season and Serve

  • Season to taste: Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot and enjoy the comfort of this hearty dish!

Tips for a Seamless Cooking Experience

Prep Ingredients Ahead
Pre-cut the sausage and measure out the cheese before you start cooking. This makes the process smoother and more enjoyable.

Use Fresh Broccoli for a Twist
If you prefer, fresh broccoli can be used instead of frozen. Just chop into florets and add to the boiling orzo about 4 minutes before the pasta is done.

Experiment with Cheese Blends
While cheddar and Colby Jack are delicious, feel free to experiment with other cheeses like mozzarella for a stringy texture or gouda for a smoky flavor.

Storage and Reheating Tips

Storing Leftovers
Transfer any leftovers to an airtight container. This dish can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

To reheat, place a portion in a microwave-safe dish and microwave on high for 2-3 minutes, stirring halfway through. You can also reheat in a skillet over medium heat, adding a splash of milk to restore creaminess.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use a different type of pasta?
Yes, feel free to use other small pasta shapes like couscous or ditalini if orzo is not available.

Is it possible to make this dish vegetarian?
Absolutely! Simply omit the sausage or replace it with a plant-based sausage alternative for a vegetarian version.

Can I add other vegetables?
Certainly! Peas, bell peppers, or spinach make great additions. Just add them at the appropriate time during cooking.

How can I make it gluten-free?
Use gluten-free pasta and ensure that your sausage is also gluten-free.

Enjoy the warm, comforting embrace of this cheesy orzo with sausage and broccoli. It’s a dish that brings my family together, and I hope it brings joy to your table as well!

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