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Cheesy Butternut Squash Orzo

Cheesy Butternut Squash Orzo is a warm, cheesy fall dish mixing orzo, roasted butternut squash and a creamy cheese sauce, then topped with fresh sage. As we approach the holidays, this would be a great side dish or an addition to your weeknight meals. You can make this a day or two ahead and heat it up when you are ready to serve!

The thing I love most about this recipe is how the sweet roasted butternut squash is paired with the savory, rich cheese, and the cream. Of course, the icing on top is the orzo.

Cheesy Butternut Squash Orzo Ingredients

For more flavorful side dishes that pair veggies with cheese, try my Chickpea Pasta with Feta or Cheesy Cauliflower Casserole.

Cheesy Butternut Squash Orzo

Photo of Cheesy Butternut Squash Orzo
  • 15 minutes
  • 30 minutes
  • 45 minutes
  • 4


4 tbsp olive oil, divided
4 cups butternut squash, cubed
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup sweet onion, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
5 sage leaves, chopped, divided
1 cup orzo
16 ounces of vegetable broth {or chicken broth}
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp cloves
Pinch of cinnamon
1 cup mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup cream
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Parmesan cheese for garnish
Sage for garnish


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Toss the butternut squash with the 2 tablespoons of olive oil and sprinkle salt and pepper.
  2. Spread in an even layer on a baking sheet.
  3. Roast in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally until the squash is tender.
  4. In a large pot boil the vegetable broth, add the orzo, cover and reduce heat to simmer for 10 minutes (or until the pasta is tender and liquid is absorbed), stirring occasionally.
  5. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet. Add the onion and garlic and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes
  6. Add half of the sage leaves, allspice, cloves, cinnamon, mozzarella cheese, cream and Parmesan cheese and turn the heat to low.
  7. Whisk until the sauce becomes thick.
  8. Stir in the orzo and butternut squash.
  9. Garnish with the other half of the fresh sage. Serve with extra mozzarella cheese and Parmesan cheese.


The allspice, cloves and cinnamon are optional to add extra flavor. It tastes great without those spices.

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