Orzo with Sausage, Peppers and Tomato (with cost and nutrition)

Last night’s supper came from the Food Network and Giada de Laurentis. I was looking for interesting new recipes, some crockpot ones, or easy ones for late night days and some just different things that we don’t normal eat like beans and lentils and some new recipes for things we’ve had before like beef stew from Emeril that we’ll probably have tomorrow night.



  • 1 red pepper ($1.48)
  • 1 orange pepper ($1.48)
  • 1lb orzo pasta ($1.28)
  • 3 cups chicken stock ($2.68)
  • 3 cups water (Free)
  • 1 Tbls. Kosher salt ($0.05, a whole 3lb box is $1.24 so this is basically free)
  • 2 Tbls. olive oil ($0.50)
  • 7oz. mild Italian turkey sausage I used 1/2 (7oz) Jennie-O smoked turkey sausage ($1.38)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced ($0.10)
  • 2 plum tomatoes I used 4 small Roma tomatoes ( $0.48)
  • 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes ($0.02)
  • 2 Tbls. chopped, flat leaf parsley ($0.05)
  • salt and pepper to taste (basically free again)
  • 1/2 cup ricotta salata cheese, crumbled (didn’t use cheese on top)

Total $9.5 for about 6 servings or $1.58/serving.  Possibly even less since I estimated for the spices/oil and if you find anything on sale or make your own chicken stock it would be a lot cheaper (and a lot less for the sodium content which turns out pretty high in this!).

  1. Roast the peppers over an open flame if you have a gas oven or you can broil them until they are charred too.  Do it more than I did in the photo above! I didn’t do a good job on this and they were hard to peel.  After they are charred put them in a bowl and cover them for about 20 minutes to steam. Then run them under cold water and peel the skins off.  Chop the peppers and get rid of the stem and seeds.
  2. In a pot put the water, stock and salt and bring to a boil.  Once boiling cook the pasta fora few minutes until it is done.  Drain the pasta saving about 1/2 cup of cooking liquid for the sauce!
  3. Heat  the oil in a skillet and then add in the sausage and saute until it is cooked (or if yours is cooked like ours was, until it is heated up a bit), add the garlic for one more minute and then the peppers, chopped tomatoes and pepper flakes.  Cook until heated through and add in the 1/2 cup pasta cooking liquid.  This part is optional – you don’t need to use it if you don’t want/need to.
  4. Mix pasta with sausage mixture and add parsley, salt and pepper to taste.  Top with cheese if you’re using it.

Nutrition Information (for 6 servings, the way I made it)

Calories 350, calories from fat 88, Fat 9.8g (15%), saturated fat 2.2g (11%), Cholesterol 79mg (26%), sodium 1864mg (78%), Carbohydrates 49.5g (16%), fiber 1.9g (8%), Vitamin A 42%, Vitamin C 106%, Calcium 6%, Iron 17%.

This recipe ended up really high in sodium but like I said with homemade broth, or lower sodium broth it might turn out a little bit better! At least it has a lot of vitamins and other good things in it.  The nutrition calculator website gave it a B as a grade 🙂


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