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We LOVE orzo recipes for an easy dinner, and this Sausage Orzo pasta is totally delicious. The recipe is all made in one pot and ready in about 30 minutes.

A big white pan on a white counter filled with Sausage Orzo in a tomatoey sauce and basil on top.

You’ve all loved my original Sausage Pasta recipe, so I knew we NEEDED an orzo version. Just as delicious, maybe even easier?

For this Sausage Orzo one pot we’re making quick mini meatballs out of the sausages, then cooking everything in the same pan for a silky, rich sauce that just needs a stir now and then.

I hope you’ll love it!

Why you’ll love this recipe

⭐️ Dinner in about 30 minutes, all made in one pan

⭐️ Delicious and inexpensive

⭐️ Crowd pleaser and super easy to make

A close up of Sausage Orzo pasta with a spoon and basil on top.

How we came up with this recipe

Orzo pasta is such a simple and easy way to make a one pan meal, pair that with family favourite sausages and OH HELLO!

I’ve included peppers, onions and tomatoes for vegetables so it’s a complete meal.

We tested this plenty of times and found that the combination of creaminess and tomato sauce worked perfectly with a simple, herby flavours.

Sausage Orzo Ingredients Notes

Ingredients for Sausage Orzo laid out on a counter top in small bowls.
  • Olive oil – Regular type, not extra virgin!
  • Sausages – Try to use a good quality, high meat content sausages
  • Garlic –  If you want a shortcut, frozen, pre prepared is perfect (it’s what I use mostly as one of my favourite shortcuts). Fresh is fine too
  • Veggies – We’re using red onion and red peppers (or bell peppers/capsicum if you’re outside the UK) in this for a little sweetness
  • Tinned chopped tomatoes / tomato puree – Any type will work for this. I do find that better quality brands are noticeable if you can
  • Herbs – Dried oregano, fresh basil and a pinch of chilli flakes
  • Vegetable stock – Any good quality, fairly low salt, vegetable stock is fine. I think Marigold brand is the best around. Made from a cube is fine
  • Orzo – The dried kind you find in packets
  • Cream cheese – Any brand is fine, low fat or regular
  • Parmesan – Grana Padano is a good, slightly cheaper alternative to Parmesan if you prefer

How to make Sausage Orzo Pasta

A pan filled with chunks of sausage, browning in oil, for step 1 in the recipe for Sausage Orzo.

1. Remove the sausages from their skins (see tips below) and put into a heated pan with oil in small chunks over a high heat (as per the full recipe below).

Chucks of cooked sausage with red pepper cooking in a pan for for step 2 in the recipe for Sausage Orzo.

2. Add the garlic, onion and peppers and cook as per the recipe below.

Chunks of sausage and red pepper in a pan with orzo and tomato sauce, with a wooden spoon for for step 3 in the recipe for Sausage Orzo.

3. Add the tomatoes, tomato puree, oregano, chilli flakes, stock and orzo, put the lid on and cook until the orzo is cooked through, stirring occasionally.

A spoon stirring a white pan filled with Sausage Orzo for for step 4 in the recipe for Sausage Orzo.

4. Before serving, stir in the cream cheese, sprinkle over the parmesan and shredded basil.

Hint: If the mixture becomes too dry before the orzo is cooked, add a splash of water (a little at a time).

Favourite orzo recipes…


  • Veggie sausages – You can try this as a vegetarian alternative dish by using chunks of veggie sausages instead. It will work really well
  • Vegetables – Feel free to mix up the kind of veggies you add in here, according to your tastes or what you have in and needs using up

Leftovers & Reheating

In the fridge Orzo can become a little gloopy after you’ve initially cooked it, so add a splash of water or an ice cube before you reheat it to stop it drying out.

In the freezer Orzo is always at its best when cooked and eaten immediately, but that’s not to say it won’t still be delicious if it’s out of the freezer. The texture can just become very stodgy. See the tip above for reheating.

Top tipS

Peeling sausages and making the ‘meatballs’

Sausage ‘skin’ pieces can be a bit yucky, so I just take each sausage and cut along the length and remove the sausage meat from the skin. Break it into large (or small) chunks as you pop into the pan.

I like to squish some of the sausage chunks with the spoon as they cook so they go nice and crispy.

Optional: Fennel seeds

This might be a little bit of a controversial ingredient but they honestly work so well in my Sausage Pasta. I do not like aniseed flavour AT ALL, but in that dish they do somehow just elevate it to something special. 

I haven’t tried or added them to this recipe, but do feel free to give it a whirl (about 1 tsp) if you’d like to give it a whirl.

More Sausage recipes…


What is orzo?

In case you’re not familiar with orzo yet, it is a type of pasta that is shaped a bit like rice. 

It is known as ‘little pasta’ in Italy, where it was traditionally used in soups, but it has become a widely-used versatile type of pasta that can be used in many kinds of hot or cold dishes.

How do I make sure my orzo doesn’t dry out?

The quantities in this recipe should be good but if you feel as though your orzo is drying out, add a little extra water or stock and stir. Don’t overdo it – just a little at a time.

Can you recommend a good pan for this recipe?

I recently tasked myself with trying out a variety of one-pan pans in a quest to find out which ones were up to the important job of making an all-in-one meal. 

Use a NON-STICK pan for this. It will make your life so much easier.

See my one pan recommendations here.

Can I use a different pasta?

I wouldn’t recommend it. This recipe has been tested multiple times specifically to work with orzo. 

Orzo works here because it is sturdy, cooks so quickly and has a rice-like texture. Feel free to try but you will need to adjust the stock levels and cooking time.

Try following my Sausage Pasta recipe instead.

Can I make this dairy free?

Yes, sure. Just swap the cream cheese and parmesan for dairy-free alternatives and you’re good to go.

Let me know how you got on and what you thought of these recipes. Please rate the recipe using the ⭐️ below.

Also I’d LOVE to see your cooking creations. If you’d like to share yours with me, you can tag me on Instagram (@tamingtwins).

5 from 3 votes

Simple Sausage Orzo {One Pot}

A perfect one pot pasta recipe, this Sausage Orzo is delicious, easy and ready in about half an hour. Ideal for the whole family with a simple creamy, tomatoey sauce, it’s lip smackingly good!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4


  • 1 tbsp Olive oil
  • 450 g Sausage
  • 4 Garlic cloves, Peeled and crushed
  • 1 Red onion, Peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 Red peppers, Deseeded and cut into 1cm pieces
  • 400 g Tinned chopped tomatoes, x1 can
  • 2 tbsp Tomato purée
  • 2 tsp Dried oregano
  • Pinch of chilli flakes
  • 650 ml Hot vegetable stock, Made from a cube is fine
  • 250 g Dried orzo
  • 100 g Cream cheese
  • 50 g Parmesan, Grated
  • 15 g Fresh basil leaves, Shredded
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


  • Heat the oil in your sauté pan over a high heat.
  • Remove the sausages from their skins and plop into the pan in small chunks, (the easiest way to do this is slice through the skin lengthways and squish out the sausage meat). Turn up the heat and let everything fry for 5 minutes until the sausage chunks are golden .
  • Add the garlic, onion and peppers and cook for 5 minutes until the onion is softened.
  • Add the tomatoes, tomato puree, oregano, chilli flakes, stock and orzo, put the lid on and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until the orzo is cooked through, stirring occasionally. (If the mixture becomes too dry before the orzo is cooked, add a splash of water.)
  • Before serving, stir in the cream cheese, sprinkle over the parmesan and shredded basil.


Onions and garlic: I use pre-prepared, frozen as I am always looking for a shortcut!
Veggie sausages: You can try this as a vegetarian alternative dish by using chunks of veggie sausages instead. It will work really well
Stock levels: If the mixture becomes too dry before the orzo or chicken is cooked, add an extra splash of water (a little at a time)
Cooking time: The cooking time for this can vary a lot depending on your pan, so always go by how well cooked your chicken and orzo are rather than by the clock
Pan: Use a NON-STICK pan for this. It will make your life so much easier
Fennel seeds optional: Add 1 tsp if you’d like a little extra flavour
Peeling the sausages: Cut the casing along the length of the sausage with a sharp knife and remove the meat from the skin


Calories: 774kcalCarbohydrates: 65gProtein: 34gFat: 42gSaturated Fat: 15gPolyunsaturated Fat: 5gMonounsaturated Fat: 18gTrans Fat: 0.2gCholesterol: 103mgSodium: 1793mgPotassium: 992mgFiber: 6gSugar: 12gVitamin A: 2998IUVitamin C: 89mgCalcium: 278mgIron: 4mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Family Food
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Sarah Rossi founder of and author of 'What's for Dinner?' books.


Hi, I'm Sarah. I help busy people decide 'What's for Dinner?' Find hundreds of recipes here, and also in my bestselling recipe book. Hope my recipes make your life easier ❤️

5 from 3 votes

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  1. 5 stars
    This is delicious! Made it for dinner tonight, super easy and clean plates all round. Thanks for another great recipe!

  2. 5 stars
    Made this a week or so ago and it was so delicious and tasty and once again, so easy to make. Thanks for another great recipe Sarah, I wish I had found you ages ago!

  3. 5 stars
    I Made This Last Night.
    Lots Of Wonderful Aromas & Taste.
    I Love Making Anything With Pasta.
    Thank You Again For The Recipe.
    Keep Up The Good Work.
    10 Out Of 10.