Simple Risotto

Is there a dish that you just love eating when it's cold out? For me, 90 % of the time, I want a soul warming soup or stew, but during that other 10% I want something rich and creamy like macaroni and cheese... or risotto! I've been intrigued and slightly intimidated by this dish for years; basically wanting to make it for as long as I knew what it was. Risotto does take a bit of time, but it's not nearly as difficult as I thought. And the result... so good. I made this dish twice is a span of only a few weeks and both times I was equally blown away. It's rich and filling, and the recipe that I use from Eating Well is also lighter than most other versions of the delicious dish without sacrificing the traditional flavor. Don't wait for next week, you should make this tonight!Are you still waiting to make it???

Arborio rice is the star in risotto. It's a rounder, more pearly looking type of rice that is typically always used to make the dish.  Onion and garlic soften while cooking and add awesome flavor to the dish.

They are sauteed with a bit of olive oil. Your kitchen will already be thanking you with all the awesome smells coming out of it.

The arborio rice is added to the onion and garlic to soak up all that goodness This is what the rice looks like in the beginning, before any liquid has been added. The broth and white wine are added to the rice, onion, and garlic in little bits which allows for the starch to be released from the rice. The rice should look a bit like this after all of the liquid has been added. But, we are still missing the icing on the cake, the cheese on the pizza, the creme de la creme... okay, I'm sure you get my jist. Freshly grated parmesan cheese! It enhances the creamy texture and adds a bit of rich flavor saltiness to the dish. Glorious... right?

A bit of parsley for garnish because it's pretty and some broccoli because it's... broccoli?Don't wait. Do it. Now.

Simple Risotto (lightly adapted from  Eating Well)

Serves 4-5 dinner portions or 8 side-dish portions


  • 5 1/2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth (Eating Well also recommends beef broth, seafood stock, bottled clam juice, “no-chicken” broth)
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup onion (or shallots), chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups arborio rice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine*
  • 1 cup finely shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, divided
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • Parsley, to garnish

The original recipe called for 1 cup of white wine. The first time I made it, I thought it was a little strong, so I scaled back the second time and loved it. If you'd like to omit the white wine all together, use 6 cups of broth.


  1. Heat broth to a simmer over medium-high heat. Reduce heat so broth remains steaming, but not simmering.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large sauce pan or dutch oven over medium high. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 2-3 minutes. Add garlic to pan and stir until fragrant. Add rice and stir to coat with all of the pan's deliciousness.
  3. Stir in a 1/2 cup of the hot broth and a splash of wine, if using. Stir frequently until all of the liquid has been absorbed.  Continue cooking over medium-high heat, adding the broth 1/2 cup at a time, along with a splash of wine. Stir after each addition, until most of the liquid has been absorbed by the rice. The risotto is done once you've used all of the broth and wine and the rice is creamy and slightly tender (about 25-35 minutes).
  4. Remove risotto from heat. Add 3/4 cup of Parmesan and pepper, stir.
  5. Serve hot, sprinkling with remaining cheese and parsley, if desired.