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Best Risotto Recipe You Have Ever Made

pegasis0066 May 11, 2013 12:50 PM

I made chorizo, fava bean, and blue cheese risotto last night and it might have been the best I have ever made (or had out since I don't ever recall ordering it at a restaurant because I am always doubtful they give it the "love" it deserves). I need to eat more of this stuff (but my waistline says otherwise). I am planning on making crayfish risotto next week (probably neither of these variations are traditional but I like a little protein in my risottos).

What's the best risotto recipe you have every made?

  1. j
    Jimkrzy6 Jun 15, 2013 09:54 AM

    Is there a recipe

    1. Emme May 17, 2013 07:57 PM

      Best? I don't know if it's the best, but OH wanted risotto and crab cakes. I did the risotto, and he did the crab cakes (he's a really good chef... when he wants to be.) I did a roasted butternut squash and roasted brussel sprouts risotto. Very simple and very good. I am not a butternut squash fan, so instead of pureeing them in, i just roasted and cooked in the cubes... that way, i could sort of pick around mine (and dole them on the plate to him...)

      1. l
        lseavey May 17, 2013 06:52 AM

        Spinach, pancetta and basil along with the usual onion, white wine, chicken broth, butter and parmigiano reggiano.

        2 Replies
        1. re: lseavey
          ttoommyy May 17, 2013 07:21 AM

          Now that sounds like my kind of risotto! I am not one for adding tons of additional ingredients to a risotto; I am a 3 ingredient or less man myself, in keeping with the Italian philosophy of "più semplice il migliore." Basically, "the simpler the better." :)

          1. re: ttoommyy
            foreverhungry May 17, 2013 07:27 AM

            Agreed, when e make risotto it's usually simple, as a side dish. If we add something, it's usually spinach, or something else green. The exception is a smoked salmon and goat cheese risotto we occasionally make, but that is very rich.

        2. m
          mike0989 May 16, 2013 08:47 AM

          Probably a primavera. It amde a wonderful part of a spring meal. This one from Epicurious is what I loosely followed.


          1. m
            mbCrispyBits May 16, 2013 08:32 AM

            Roasted carrot risotto! I followed a standard risotto recipe but substituted chicken stock with vegetable stock. In advance, I roasted peeled carrots with olive oil, salt, pepper and blasted them in the oven till they were nicely browned and caramelized. In a bowl I mashed the carrots with a fork, then added some veg stock and pureed with a handheld stick blender. Added this puree along with fresh chopped tarragon to the risotto about 5 minutes before it was done, and it came out perfect.

            1 Reply
            1. re: mbCrispyBits
              Emme May 17, 2013 07:55 PM

              Carrot Risotto is always a surprising hit. No one ever really knows what is so special. I don't advertise it before serving, as some turn their noses up, but always love it. And are genuinely surprised and impressed when I tell them it's carrot...

            2. c oliver May 15, 2013 07:04 PM

              Did anyone already link to this DOTM on risotto?


              3 Replies
              1. re: c oliver
                ttoommyy May 16, 2013 03:59 AM

                Yes, I did. It was the first response. :)

                1. re: ttoommyy
                  c oliver May 16, 2013 08:21 AM

                  Oops :)

                  1. re: c oliver
                    ttoommyy May 16, 2013 08:22 AM

                    It's all good!

              2. c
                cookjoe May 15, 2013 04:30 PM

                In the wintertime, instead of white wine I use red wine and I do some roasted mushrooms (I mix minced garlic and some oil) and roast until they are crispy and add to the risotto, and save some for the top to garnish. I add rosemary and thyme to the fresh chicken stock. Along with the butter and parmesan at the end too. Steak would be good with this dish with the red wine.

                2 Replies
                1. re: cookjoe
                  schrutefarms May 15, 2013 05:37 PM

                  I've often wanted to try it out with red wine. Beef broth, too. Anyone try that one out?

                  1. re: schrutefarms
                    melpy May 16, 2013 09:25 AM

                    I have done red wine but not beef broth. I prefer white.

                2. w
                  wattacetti May 15, 2013 03:56 PM

                  A few years back: carnaroli rice, (edit) sake, grey shallots, clarified chicken broth (all chicken no aromatics to maintain the pale color.

                  Finished by first painting the bottom of the service bowls with anchovy paste and a couple of grains of instant coffee, topped with grated 40 month Parmigiano-Reggiano and 2+ year old mojamas.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: wattacetti
                    c oliver May 15, 2013 04:43 PM

                    Good grief - that sounds insane and wonderful and beautiful. I definitely did NOT have enough lunch today. BTW, my chicken stock is made with nothing but chicken (feet, backs and necks) for that reason. I want it to go where I want it to go.

                  2. b
                    badhousekeeping May 15, 2013 03:34 PM

                    The morel one I made last spring was to live for... plus, a close second is the last one I made: with anchovies and green peas, topped with bacon and a fried egg.

                    5 Replies
                    1. re: badhousekeeping
                      c oliver May 15, 2013 03:47 PM

                      I had a morel one last Saturday for lunch. There was a lot of moaning and eyerolling at our table :) And the second one you mention sound fascinating and very, very good!

                      1. re: c oliver
                        badhousekeeping May 15, 2013 03:55 PM

                        The great thing about anchovies in a risotto is the umami flavor it adds. I used the oil from the can to saute the shallots at the beginning, too. I'd already invented the anchovy and green pea risotto recipe, and adding the crispy bacon and soft fried egg was my husband's idea. We served it to his mom for Mother's Day dinner, and she LOVED it. Of course, the leftovers were even better for breakfast yesterday morning. :)

                        1. re: badhousekeeping
                          c oliver May 15, 2013 04:41 PM

                          Followup question. Did you cook the anchovies (mushed up or whole filets) in with the rice or did they get added at the end. I'm not over the top on anchovies (love some, not all).

                          1. re: c oliver
                            badhousekeeping May 15, 2013 04:48 PM

                            I cooked them with the rice. They break down instantly and vanish into the dish, contributing only flavor. It doesn't end up being fishy tasting, either.

                            1. re: badhousekeeping
                              c oliver May 15, 2013 04:57 PM

                              Thanks for the followup. That's what I was hoping.

                    2. s
                      schrutefarms May 15, 2013 09:27 AM

                      Lemon/parmeson/pea. I make a traditional risotto (shallots, white wine, chicken stock) add frozen or fresh peas halfway through, then add lemon zest, juice, and parm at the end (just after I add a pat of butter). A little S&P. But the best is what I do with the leftovers...
                      I scoop out the slimy, cold leftover risotto and make 1 1/2 inch balls, dredge in flour/egg wash/seasoned bread crumbs, then deep fry in vegetable oil until golden. I then make a garlic/paprika/lemon aioli for a dipping sauce. So good!!! (PS, if you don't like peas, you can sub Italian parsley. I just like a bit of color.)

                      13 Replies
                      1. re: schrutefarms
                        c oliver May 15, 2013 02:29 PM

                        Isn't that arancini? I've never made them so just asking.

                        1. re: c oliver
                          schrutefarms May 15, 2013 03:11 PM

                          I think so-or very close, at least. The only arancini I've ever had were made by my ex's Italian mom-I remember them being made with actual rice. And they were much larger. But yeah, same idea :)

                          1. re: c oliver
                            sandylc May 15, 2013 03:24 PM

                            Yes, arancini are made from leftover risotto. Usually, there is a cube of mozzarella buried inside the risotto ball before it is breaded and fried.

                            1. re: sandylc
                              c oliver May 15, 2013 03:46 PM

                              I REALLY need to make those. REALLY :)

                              1. re: c oliver
                                sandylc May 15, 2013 03:58 PM

                                I haven't made them in too long. It goes on the "soon" list. They are lovely dipped in marinara.

                                1. re: c oliver
                                  Wahooty May 15, 2013 09:50 PM

                                  I sometimes make risotto JUST so I'll have leftovers to make arancini. Ramp risotto seems to make particularly nice ones...something about the frying seems to release more rampy goodness, and it's trapped in the golden brown, crunchy shell. I like to make them small and tuck just one or two little mozzarella pearls into them.

                                2. re: sandylc
                                  boyzoma May 16, 2013 12:03 PM

                                  I had never heard of arancini, but boy-o-boy do I know about it now. I can't wait to try this next time I have some leftover risotto. I saw one that was stuffed with smoked mozzarella I'm dying to try. I wonder if a roasted red pepper sauce would work with this as well? I also wonder if risotto milenase would work as well. Thoughts?

                                  1. re: boyzoma
                                    grampart May 16, 2013 12:08 PM

                                    I just form the leftover risotto into cakes, pat on some bread crumbs, and fry slowly in a half inch of oil, turning once. Easy, peazy. Are the deep-fried balls better?

                                    1. re: grampart
                                      ttoommyy May 16, 2013 12:28 PM

                                      Traditional arancini (Italian for "little oranges"referring to their size) are usually stuffed with a tomato sugo that conains peas and a bit of meat; some are also are stuffed with a piece of mozzarella or similar cheese.

                                      1. re: ttoommyy
                                        schrutefarms May 16, 2013 12:43 PM

                                        That's what my ex's parents used to make-I remember it had meat, and was very cheesy. Mine are smaller, have a thick, deep fried crust, and the risotto is quite gooey in the middle. Both delicious!!

                                    2. re: boyzoma
                                      bear May 16, 2013 12:33 PM

                                      I've made arancini with smoked mozz and they were delicious. I bet a red pepper sauce would be perfect with them because the cheese is assertive enough to stand up to the peppers.

                                      1. re: boyzoma
                                        schrutefarms May 16, 2013 12:45 PM

                                        I think any sauce you like would work! Like I said in my post, I make an aioli to dip mine in-there's no rules! And you could mix up the cheese, too!

                                        1. re: boyzoma
                                          sandylc May 17, 2013 07:43 PM

                                          That all sounds good.

                                  2. melpy May 15, 2013 09:02 AM

                                    Autumn risotto:
                                    Sweet potato
                                    Sweet apple chicken sausage
                                    Olive oil
                                    Chicken broth
                                    Apple cider

                                    Caramelized Carrot Risotto from Sunset magazine

                                    Out in a restaurant it is usually the mushroom ones that I love best.

                                    1. ursy_ten May 14, 2013 06:21 PM

                                      I like butternut squash and apple - a really nice combination.

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: ursy_ten
                                        c oliver May 14, 2013 06:33 PM

                                        It IS a nice combo. Flavor AND texture. Maybe that's why I like it pretty plain. The textural part of it.

                                        1. re: c oliver
                                          ursy_ten May 15, 2013 02:11 AM

                                          Yes :) I like the simplicity.

                                      2. h
                                        Hobbert May 14, 2013 09:39 AM

                                        Reading this thread inspired me to make risotto for the first time last night. The posts were making me hungry :) I did a pretty basic shrimp risotto and, holy moly, it was awesome! I've never made (or eaten) risotto before and it turned out perfectly. Took longer the recipe claimed- closer to 40 minutes than 20, but it was worth the wait. Thanks for the inspiration!

                                        1. c oliver May 12, 2013 10:54 AM

                                          I recently made a very basic Hazan risotto. Doesn't even use wine. The best I've made but not the best I've had. It's still a dish that I need to work on. Need to revisit that DOTM from a while back. Yesterday for lunch a local restaurant was featuring a morel mushroom risotto. The server was, like don't you want some chicken or something in that. No, no and no :) I think adding a protein to this perfect dish makes it less than perfect. Just me of course.

                                          1. r
                                            rjbh20 May 12, 2013 08:27 AM

                                            Langostino risotto, made with roasted lobster stock.

                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: rjbh20
                                              bear May 15, 2013 05:13 PM

                                              Gorgeous! Did it taste as amazing as it looked?

                                              1. re: bear
                                                rjbh20 May 15, 2013 06:09 PM

                                                It was very good. Simple and clear flavors, aided by a very rich stock. Need to do this again before the weather warms up too much

                                            2. Bada Bing May 12, 2013 07:25 AM

                                              My favorite is risotto with squid.

                                              I briefly saute the squid in the risotto pot (but only parcooking it), then remove the squid to a bowl. Then I build the flavor base with garlic, onion and/or shallots, using chicken stock or (if I have it) a stock made from leftover shrimp shells, which I always freeze). Then when the risotto is about done, I stir the squid back in and let the pot sit covered off the heat for 5-10 minutes to finish the squid cooking without them overcooking. Then I might stir in some parsley and sometimes a bit of parmigiano (yeah, yeah, I know some say no cheese and seafood for Italian).

                                              What I like about this is its relatively light and delicate character.

                                              When I want something earthier, I go for risotto with porcini and plenty of parmigiano.

                                              1. thecitylane May 12, 2013 06:48 AM

                                                I love this one. My "go to" risotto, however I add diced chicken breast to it.


                                                1. Paprikaboy May 12, 2013 06:39 AM

                                                  Has to be aubergine and roasted butternut squash.
                                                  Baked the aubergine in a very hot oven until blackened and aubergine soft and smoky. Scooped out the flesh and added some olive oil. Stirred this in at the end of making a standard risotto with chicken stock. Topped with small cubes of butternut squash that were dusted with sea salt and dried oregano. Didn't add any cheese.

                                                  1. s
                                                    sandylc May 11, 2013 07:29 PM

                                                    Good old mushroom and parmesan with homemade chicken stock.

                                                    1. m
                                                      maudies5 May 11, 2013 07:19 PM

                                                      My Mushroom Risotto recipe which was published in Bon Appetite. My children encouraged me to submit it. Still proud of that recipe.

                                                      4 Replies
                                                      1. re: maudies5
                                                        grampart May 11, 2013 07:42 PM

                                                        I think I must have missed that issue. :-). Care to share?

                                                        1. re: maudies5
                                                          Berheenia May 12, 2013 10:43 AM

                                                          Please share!

                                                          1. re: maudies5
                                                            grampart May 15, 2013 06:29 PM

                                                            So how about it? Gonna share? Provide a link?

                                                            1. re: maudies5
                                                              mbCrispyBits May 16, 2013 08:35 AM

                                                              Mmmm! Love mushroom risotto! I make mine with chopped wild mushrooms cooked in butter, whatever herbs are in season, and red wine, then add to the risotto when it's time to mix in the cheese.

                                                            2. c
                                                              cheesymama May 11, 2013 05:47 PM

                                                              With homemade chicken stock and a pile of ramps! I think it was a Gordon Ramsey recipe that I first followed, but now I just make it - sautee the whites at the beginning with the rice and add the greens near the end.

                                                              1. e
                                                                escondido123 May 11, 2013 01:20 PM

                                                                Risotto made with homemade chicken stock, a little olive oil and a little cheese really isn't that fattening. It's when we pile on all that other stuff that we get in trouble.

                                                                18 Replies
                                                                1. re: escondido123
                                                                  foreverhungry May 11, 2013 07:25 PM

                                                                  Hate to burst your bubble, but risotto is fattening because it's a big starch bomb. Homemade stock or not, and the cheese isn't that big a contributor. Add some protein and you'd be better off.

                                                                  That said, any decent homemade risotto is a great dish. My favorite is smoked salmon and goat cheese. Small portions.

                                                                  1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                    escondido123 May 11, 2013 09:06 PM

                                                                    Starch bomb? Two hundred fifty calories is a starch bomb? Sorry, I think that with a cupful of a nice vegetable like asparagus or mushrooms it is a wonderful main course. I don't need major protein at every meal.

                                                                    1. re: escondido123
                                                                      foreverhungry May 15, 2013 09:18 AM

                                                                      A plain risotto, one serving, (1/6th of a standard full recipe is usually what I've seen in most cookbooks) comes in around 400+ calories, with 45+ grams of carbohydrates. Because it's white rice, the glycemic index on that is high. But then most folks, including restaurant servings, aren't eating 1/6th of a recipe, which means 60-90 grams of a simple carbohydrate in a single meal.

                                                                      The equivelent in pasta is an 1/8 pound serving of plain pasta - 43 grams of simple carbohydrates. But most folks that make pasta their main course will double that to 1/4 lb dried pasta - about 2 cups cooked - ringing in at 86 grams of simple carbs. That too would qualify, for me anyway, as a starch bomb, because of a high amount of simple carbohydrates with a high glycemic index.

                                                                      I love risotto, but I'm under no delusion that it makes for a healthy meal all by itself, unless it's mostly lean protein or vegetable, and not a lot of rice/cheese.

                                                                      1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                        piccola May 16, 2013 04:10 AM

                                                                        That's a bit of a specious argument, though -- an excessive serving of anything is unhealthy but that doesn't mean the dish itself is. The problem is that people insist on eating risotto as a main, when it should be a side (or a component of the meal, preferably with a green salad or something of the like). Also, adding a small amount of fat (in the form of oil/butter and cheese) slows down the glycemic response.

                                                                        Not saying it should be on the daily menu but it can definitely be a healthy meal. The key is to not it eat it "all by itself."

                                                                        1. re: piccola
                                                                          foreverhungry May 16, 2013 05:32 AM

                                                                          Yes, I agree that an excess of most things is unhealthy. As you point out, though, the problem is when risotto is eaten as the main. Unfortunately, that's what happens in many American restaurants. escondido123, above, also suggested that's how (he/she) has risotto, as a single meal.

                                                                          I agree that risotto can be part of a healthy meal. I'm leery about it being a healthy meal in-and-of-itself, unless it's loaded with a lean protein and vegetables, and one serving has a relatively low rice content.

                                                                          So yes, I misspoke when I said that risotto is a starch-bomb. It's how it's usually eaten in the US that's the problem.

                                                                          1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                            ttoommyy May 16, 2013 06:40 AM

                                                                            "So yes, I misspoke when I said that risotto is a starch-bomb. It's how it's usually eaten in the US that's the problem."

                                                                            I've eaten many risotto in Italy as either a primi or as an entree and the serving size is usually pretty healthy; it's definitely not a side dish size.

                                                                            1. re: ttoommyy
                                                                              foreverhungry May 16, 2013 07:06 AM

                                                                              Interesting. On my two trips to italy, I've never seen it as an entree, only as a primi. So I'll strike the "in the US" part of the statement above.

                                                                              1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                ttoommyy May 16, 2013 07:39 AM

                                                                                Yes, it's offered as a primi but you certainly can order it as an entree. That's what I meant. And then of course there are those that order it as a primi and then have an secondi as well.

                                                                                1. re: ttoommyy
                                                                                  foreverhungry May 16, 2013 08:34 AM

                                                                                  And there's the rub - an entree sized dish of risotto. That's where it rolls into the "less than a balanced meal" zone. I have no issues, personally, with a primi sized portion of risotto and a secondi. But when I do that, it's on days where I've had a significant calorie expenditure.

                                                                                  1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                    ttoommyy May 16, 2013 08:51 AM

                                                                                    "And there's the rub - an entree sized dish of risotto. That's where it rolls into the "less than a balanced meal" zone.

                                                                                    I think you are confused. When I order it as an entree in Italy, it is from the selection of primi; so no size difference. It is not a huge portion of food, but it is enough to eat as an entree, especially if starting with a light antipasti or finishing with a salad.

                                                                                    1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                      c oliver May 16, 2013 09:17 AM

                                                                                      I hope I never have to live my life so that every day or every meal has to consist of a "balanced meal." My life's motto is everything in moderation including moderation.

                                                                                      1. re: c oliver
                                                                                        ttoommyy May 16, 2013 10:20 AM

                                                                                        Well, some people have to live there lives eating a "balanced meal" because of health reasons. I actually had to eat a LOW fiber diet for a good part of a year due to a health problem.

                                                                                        That said, I too subscribe to the moderation philosophy, and except for a few extra pounds, I am pretty healthy these days.

                                                                                        btw...and I say this in a kidding kind of way...I find @foreverhungry's screen name funny given his/her comments about eating a "balanced diet." :)

                                                                                        1. re: ttoommyy
                                                                                          foreverhungry May 16, 2013 11:56 AM

                                                                                          No irony meant in the screen name. I am truly forever hungry! And eating a 2-3 serving plate of risotto is not an uncommon occurance. Those large meals get balanced out at the end of the week, though. There's really not much that's on my "don't eat list", and my "eat as often as possible" list includes pizza, pulled pork, and risotto. That gets moderated on the other side with a very active lifestyle. One of my reasons for a lot of exercise is so I can eat what I want, when I want.

                                                                                          A look at my local shopping mall, though, suggests that many folks work more on one side of the equation, and ignore the other.

                                                                                          1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                            ttoommyy May 16, 2013 12:26 PM

                                                                                            From the way you were talking in your posts it sounded like you did not eat anything like "pizza, pulled pork, and risotto." Sorry for the assumption.

                                                                                            1. re: ttoommyy
                                                                                              foreverhungry May 16, 2013 05:37 PM

                                                                                              Nope, sorry. I do try to eat healthy, but pork, pizza, and pasta are favorites. Like I said, I balance that by other days of more moderate eating, and a much exercise as I can find time for.

                                                                                              These risotto recipes have me salivating!

                                                                                              1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                                c oliver May 16, 2013 06:05 PM

                                                                                                I'm guilty also of judging you :( We've all known "that kind" of person :)

                                                                              2. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                escondido123 May 16, 2013 02:48 PM

                                                                                I have risotto as the main course, after a first course salad that contains vegetables.

                                                                                1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                  piccola May 17, 2013 06:51 PM

                                                                                  I think we're all on the same page: everything in moderation, yadda yadda yadda. :)

                                                                      2. pegasis0066 May 11, 2013 01:06 PM

                                                                        Oops, I thought I looked for a recent thread but must have missed that one.

                                                                        1. grampart May 11, 2013 01:04 PM

                                                                          I've made this twice and both times it was amazing. Leftovers made into cakes and fried on medium heat until golden brown are wonderful too!


                                                                          1. ttoommyy May 11, 2013 01:03 PM

                                                                            Sounds tasty! Lots of good info here:


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