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Pumpkin & Orzo Risotto with Crispy Bacon

This delicious recipe blends sweet and salty to create comfort in a bowl.
Servings 4
Total Time 35 mins



  • 1 brown onion finely diced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 drizzle oil
  • 600 g diced pumpkin
  • Italian spices 1 tsp oregano, ½ tsp garlic powder, ¼ tsp thyme, 1 tsp sweet paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 courgette grated
  • 75 g baby spinach
  • 125 g sour cream


  • 450 g orzo pasta
  • 1 drizzle oil


  • 250 g streaky bacon

To Serve

  • 50 g grated Parmesan cheese


  • Before you start, preheat oven to high grill. Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil.
  • Prep onion and garlic. Heat oil in a large pot on medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and cook for about 3 minutes, until tender. Add pumpkin, Italian spices and salt and cook for 1 minute, until fragrant. Add stock, bring to a simmer. Once simmering, cover, reduce heat to medium and cook for about 15 minutes, until pumpkin is very tender and liquid has reduced. Add a little water if sauce becomes too dry.
  • Meanwhile, cook pasta in pot of boiling water for 9-10 minutes, until just tender. Drain and return to pot with oil to prevent sticking.
  • Place bacon in a single layer on an oven tray. Grill for about 5 minutes each side, until golden and crispy. Leave to cool slightly, then roughly chop.
  • To finish, grate courgette. Remove sauce from heat and roughly mash pumpkin into a thick sauce. Add courgette, spinach, cooked pasta and sour cream to pot and stir to combine. Add a little water, if needed. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Serve pasta topped with bacon and Parmesan.