Every year when it's time to go back to school I get inundated with requests from students to post recipes that are super-easy, cost pennies, and require a bare minimum of kitchen equipment. This delicious orecchiette pasta recipe only has a handful of ingredients, is very cheap to make, and most importantly: only uses one pan or pot for the entire procedure.

Recipe Summary

prep:
15 mins
cook:
25 mins
total:
40 mins
Servings:
2
Yield:
2 servings
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Ingredients

2
Original recipe yields 2 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Heat olive oil in a large, deep skillet over medium heat. Cook and stir onion with a pinch of salt in hot oil until onion is soft and golden, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir sausage into onions; cook and stir until sausage is broken up and browned, 5 to 7 minutes.

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  • Pour 1 1/2 cups chicken broth into sausage mixture and bring to a boil while scraping the browned bits of food off of the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. Add orecchiette pasta; cook and stir pasta in hot broth, adding remaining broth when liquid is absorbed, until pasta is cooked through and most of the broth is absorbed, about 15 minutes.

  • Stir arugula into pasta-sausage mixture until arugula wilts. Ladle pasta into bowls and dust with Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.

Nutrition Facts

662 calories; protein 31.2g 62% DV; carbohydrates 46.2g 15% DV; fat 39.1g 60% DV; cholesterol 59.7mg 20% DV; sodium 1359.8mg 54% DV. Full Nutrition
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Reviews (711)

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Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
09/07/2014
Delicious and easy! Followed the recipe almost exactly to what is written....it is very forgiving with changes to proportions of ingredients. Perfect as is. I wouldn't stray too far from Orecchiette-like pasta to ensure even cooking. Times listed were spot on. Will make again for sure! Read More
(139)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 3 stars
05/28/2015
I love Chef John, and I love one-pan dishes, but I found this underwhelming. Like a lot of good, fast recipes it relies on sausage as "spice shortcut" because the spicy Italian sausage already has many spices blended in. In this case, I would have been better off to add more garlic, crushed red pepper, and the other half of the onion. Read More
(63)
941 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 692
  • 4 star values: 183
  • 3 star values: 40
  • 2 star values: 19
  • 1 star values: 7
Rating: 5 stars
09/06/2014
Delicious and easy! Followed the recipe almost exactly to what is written....it is very forgiving with changes to proportions of ingredients. Perfect as is. I wouldn't stray too far from Orecchiette-like pasta to ensure even cooking. Times listed were spot on. Will make again for sure! Read More
(139)
Rating: 5 stars
05/29/2015
Wonderful! cooking pasta in a reducing broth may not be for everyone- good news is it's very versatile! & I do make it somewhat differntly - for a couple of reasons. I hate the floury taste from pasta cooked in a reducing liquid, same thing happens when you cook pasta in a crock pot-an awful floury taste.. So, if you're like me, here are some tips.. cook your pasta separately, to almost al dente.. then use half the chicken broth(any kind of broth/bouillon/ soup mix will work here - if you don't care for salt tho, make sure to use low/no sodium). When you add your pasta cook it in half the broth adding more as/if needed until your pasta is completely done. Another issue for me is the oil and sausage fat (btw - you don't have to use sausage here either, ground or shredded chicken, ground turkey/beef also work well-it should be well seasoned though because it's the backbone of the dish). I use sweet Italian sausage & I add more Italian seasoning & yum-Garlic!. After cooking the onion & any other vegies (yum-diced tomatoes & mushrooms!)-then I check how much oil is in the pan -if I use sausage, I drain the oil/fat then add sausage & drain again before adding pasta. If I use chicken-then I may not drain, chicken has less fat-see how it cooks up & you can judge if you need/want to drain fat off. finally, the greens - arugula/spinach/zucchini all work great! Remember a recipe is only a guide & you know your family's tastes best. Read More
(114)
Rating: 4 stars
12/11/2014
Liked this much better than cooking pasta alone. Much richer. I made with kale as that is what I had. Sautéed the onions, garlic then added kale. I took out of pan and sautéed sausage with about 1/2 teaspoon of red pepper. I then drained it and put back in pan with veggies. I used vegetable broth as I had it open. Rich and delicious Read More
(64)
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Rating: 3 stars
05/28/2015
I love Chef John, and I love one-pan dishes, but I found this underwhelming. Like a lot of good, fast recipes it relies on sausage as "spice shortcut" because the spicy Italian sausage already has many spices blended in. In this case, I would have been better off to add more garlic, crushed red pepper, and the other half of the onion. Read More
(63)
Rating: 5 stars
10/09/2014
This was super easy and fast to make. My fiancee said that it was a gourmet meal that would cost a lot at a restaurant. My two picky boys thought it was delicious and asked me to make it again the next day, which rarely happens. My new favorite Italian dish from my favorite chef on this site! Read More
(55)
Rating: 4 stars
10/19/2014
This was quick easy and very good. Instead of arugula I added spinach. I used 1lb Italian sausage and 1/2 lb spicy. My family said this is something they would like to have again. Thanks for sharing. Read More
(33)
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Rating: 5 stars
11/25/2014
As stated in previous reviews, this recipe is delicious, easy, and very forgiving with the proportions and interchangeability of ingredients. I used ground turkey for the meat and spinach for the greens. I also used homemade chicken stock to control the salt content. A definite keeper, as always with Chef John's recipes! Read More
(32)
Rating: 5 stars
03/01/2015
Have made this many times with amazing results. My wife and I consider ourselves foodies and this can be made and presented with amazing results. Great job Chef John! Read More
(31)
Rating: 5 stars
04/27/2015
Great easy recipe!!! My husband loved it.... i used baby spinach instead & added a red pepper & mushrooms to it, next time I think I will add some pinenuts as well. Read More
(27)
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