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Savory Orzo Stuffing

A fabulous holiday stuffing recipe made with orzo pasta instead of day old bread. Just the thing to give your stuffing recipe a little dose of intrigue this year.

Orzo Stuffing Recipe - Just the thing to add a little oomph to #Thanksgiving! #stuffing #pasta #recipe

It pains me to say this, but it has come to my immediate attention (after a very official survey on my Facebook page late one night) that approximately 20% of you don’t like Thanksgiving stuffing because of the texture.

As stuffing is my absolute favorite part of Thanksgiving dinner, my head is hanging in sadness.

In fact, to further explain my attachment to stuffing, let me just say my older sister tells stories about how I use to talk about stuffing in my sleep when I was a little girl. It is very special to me.

So today I’d like to reach out to those of you who don’t have the same appreciation for stuffing that I do, and offer a compromise…

Our Orzo Stuffing Recipe!

Orzo Stuffing Recipe - Just the thing to add a little oomph to #Thanksgiving! #stuffing #pasta #recipe

If wet-bread texture is troubling to you, this stuffing recipe is the solution.

Using DeLallo Pasta in the orzo stuffing recipe creates a lovely firm yet fluffy texture, instead of the moist dense stuffing that the other 80% of us love.

After experimenting with this, I have to tell you, this might be my new favorite stuffing recipe. The piece-y texture and light pasta flavor means the other ingredients really shine through. You get the savory-sweet pop from sautéed apples, celery, carrots and onions, along with rich salty bits of crisp bacon.

Easy Orzo Stuffing Recipe - Just the thing to add a little oomph to #Thanksgiving! #stuffing #pasta #recipe

Plus the shape and size of my favorite orzo, DeLallo Orzo Number 65, is not only visually appealing, it makes it easy to scoop, serve, and stuff.

If you like to fill your bird with stuffing on Thanksgiving, you could most definitely use this orzo stuffing recipe in it! Wouldn’t your turkey look beautiful with this colorful orzo cascading out?

I think so.

Orzo Stuffing Recipe

Yield: 6-8 servings

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes


  • 1 lb. DeLallo Orzo Pasta
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 1 cup diced onions
  • 1 cup diced carrots
  • 1 1/2 cups diced apple
  • 12 oz. chopped bacon
  • 1 Tb. chopped fresh sage


  1. Place a large pot of salted water over high heat and bring to a boil. Cook the orzo according to the DeLallo package instructions and drain, saving 1 cup of the pasta water for later use. (If you plan to use this stuffing in a bird, undercook the pasta a little bit.)
  2. Meanwhile, place a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bacon to the skillet and brown until just cooked through. Then add the celery, onions and carrots to the skillet and saute for 2-3 minutes. Add the apples, stir and saute another 2-3 minutes until soft, but firm.
  3. Now mix in the cooked orzo and sage. Toss well and add 1/2 cup of the reserved pasta water to help the flavors mingle. Toss and cook another 1-2 minutes, using more pasta water if needed. Taste, then salt and pepper as needed. Serve warm.

Making this recipe? Why not take a quick shot and share it on Instagram! Make sure to tag it #ASpicyPerspective so we can see what you're cooking!

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26 Responses to “Savory Orzo Stuffing”

  1. Pingback: The Party Blog: Where DIY Projects and Confetti collide | The Party DIY

  2. Tieghanposted November 22, 2013 at 7:39 am

    This looks good good, Sommer! I love the idea of using orzo instead of bread! My family is actually not real big on traditional stuffing so this is perfect!


  3. Shariposted November 22, 2013 at 8:43 am

    This looks delicious, and great presentation dish. The colors are gorgeous.!

    xoxo ~Shari


  4. Mariaposted November 22, 2013 at 7:54 am

    Love DeLallo’s orzo! Great way to switch up the traditional stuffing!


  5. Jenny Flakeposted November 22, 2013 at 8:03 am

    What a fun way to switch up stuffing! I want some!!


  6. Marian (Sweetopia)posted November 22, 2013 at 8:08 am

    Looks soo good! Wish this was my lunch today!


  7. Stacyposted November 22, 2013 at 8:17 am

    O.M.G. My mouth is watering! You just added a new twist to our Thanksgiving. Wonderful!


  8. Heather Christoposted November 22, 2013 at 8:18 am

    I LOVE this idea in place of bread- beautiful dish sommer!


  9. Jayposted November 22, 2013 at 8:27 am

    Any ideas on a good substitute for the bacon? Other than that may fix it today….


    • Sommer — November 22nd, 2013 @ 8:39 am

      Jay in my mind, nothing compares to bacon. Are you looking for a meatless substitute or a pork-free substitute?

      You could make it with chicken sausage, or even try turkey or soy bacon.


  10. Liz @ The Lemon Bowlposted November 22, 2013 at 8:29 am

    I love this version of stuffing!!! I could eat this any day of the year!


  11. Jeanette | Jeanette's Healthy Livingposted November 22, 2013 at 8:43 am

    What a beautiful simple stuffing alternative Sommer – love the bright veggies!


  12. DeLallo Foodsposted November 22, 2013 at 8:45 am

    This looks delicious, Sommer! Perfect for the holiday season! Thanks for featuring our orzo!


  13. Brenda @ a farmgirl's dabblesposted November 22, 2013 at 2:19 pm

    What a fun way to mix it up for Thanksgiving!!


  14. Cassieposted November 22, 2013 at 3:04 pm

    What an amazing stuffing recipe!!


  15. Laura (Tutti Dolci)posted November 22, 2013 at 5:30 pm

    I love orzo, wonderful stuffing idea!


  16. Miss @ Miss in the Kitchenposted November 23, 2013 at 12:45 pm

    This looks amazing. I love the bacon and sage together!


  17. Julie @ Table for Twoposted November 24, 2013 at 10:20 am

    Seriously so creative!!! I LOVE that you used orzo for this stuffing!!


  18. Kevin @ Closet Cookingposted November 24, 2013 at 5:21 pm

    Nice orzo stuffing!


  19. marlaposted November 25, 2013 at 7:46 am

    Such a great twist on traditional stuffing!


  20. Megan {Country Cleaver}posted November 25, 2013 at 11:41 am

    I can just eat this with a spoon right ? I don’t want anything else getting in the way of me and that orzo but a fork!!


  21. Russell at chasingdelicious.composted November 25, 2013 at 2:38 pm

    Yum and yum!


  22. Nutmeg Nannyposted November 26, 2013 at 1:51 pm

    Oh my, I love this stuffing recipe :) perfect twist on a classic


  23. Shainaposted November 27, 2013 at 9:44 pm

    I love the idea of doing all the stuffing flavors but without the soggy bread. I can’t wait to try this!


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  25. Dorieposted December 14, 2014 at 1:13 pm

    Hi Sommer I love your site, everything is creative and unique! I stumbled across this recipe awhile ago and want to make it for Christmas. I am making turkey again and wanted to change up all the sides. Question: Can I make it ahead and reheat without it getting sticky or mushy? I have 30 people coming and need to do as much as I can ahead of time. Thanks!


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