Mushroom risotto is a classic creamy Italian rice dish that combines the earthy flavors of mushrooms with the creamy goodness of risotto rice.
It is one of my favorite meals to prepare but, most of all, to eat; it can be scary to prepare the first time but believe me, with little tricks and a little bit of patience, the result will be perfect; it is super creamy.
Olive oil: Use high-quality olive oil to sauté the mushrooms and onions.
Broth: Use homemade or store-bought broth. It will work well, even with chicken stock or vegetable stock cubes.
Mushrooms: Choose your favorite variety of mushrooms, whether it’s cremini mushrooms, shiitake, baby bellas, fresh mushrooms, or frozen.
I always use a mix of mushrooms for the umami flavor,
Garlic: I use whole garlic to flavor the mushrooms while cooking. We remove it when the mushrooms are cooked.
Yellow onion: Add sweetness to the risotto.
Risotto rice: Arborio is the best choice for risotto due to its high starch content and creamy texture.
You can experiment with other short-grain varieties like Carnaroli rice or Vialone Nano. They offer similar creamy results.
Dry white wine: Adds more flavor (use more broth if you don’t use wine).
Parsley: Freshly chopped parsley adds a pop of color and freshness.
Butter: we will use it to “mantecare” the risotto and make super creamy
Parmesan cheese: It helps to make a creamy risotto.
Salt and black pepper to taste
How to make the best Creamy Mushroom Risotto
Step 1 (optional):
To begin, I like to prepare homemade vegetable broth. Simmer a combination of vegetables like carrots, celery, and mushroom stems.
Let it cook for 15 minutes, then blend it with an immersion blender. Of course, store-bought broth works, too, if you’re short on time.
Clean the mushrooms thoroughly and cook at medium-high heat in a pan with some garlic until they’re beautifully golden and fragrant.
Set them aside to incorporate into the risotto later.
Add a bit more olive oil using the same pan and cook the chopped onion at medium heat until translucent, creating a flavorful base for the risotto.
Then I add the arborio rice, stirring and toasting it for a couple of minutes, then pour in the white wine and let it sizzle and evaporate.
Add the warm broth, stirring continuously, allowing the rice to absorb the broth before pouring in more.
Just when the risotto is almost cooked al dente, reintroduce the cooked mushrooms, allowing their flavors to meld with the rice.
Once the risotto is cooked, turn off the heat and stir in Parmesan cheese, butter, and freshly chopped parsley.
This final touch lends a luxurious creaminess and burst of freshness.
Served hot, it’s a dish that celebrates the very essence of Italian comfort food.
“Manteca” is an Italian culinary verb that means “to blend” or “to work in” additional ingredients into a dish to make it creamier and richer.
Tips for a delicious risotto
- Use homemade vegetable broth for a more flavorful risotto.
- The broth should always be hot; if the broth is cold, you stop the cooking process every time you add some. Keep the broth on the side at low heat.
- Take your time with the process: Patience is vital when making risotto.
- Stir, stir, stir: Stirring the risotto regularly helps release the starch from the rice, resulting in a creamy consistency.
What to Serve with Mushroom Risotto
Mushroom risotto is a versatile dish that can be served as a main dish or paired with various proteins and sides.
Here are a few delicious options:
- Grilled chicken or a steak: The creamy mushroom risotto complements perfectly cooked meats.
- Roasted vegetables: Serve your mushroom risotto with a side dish of vegetables like broccoli and zucchini for a well-balanced meal.
- A side salad can provide a light and refreshing contrast to the risotto’s richness.
Storing Leftovers: Keep any remaining risotto in an airtight container and refrigerate. It’s best when consumed within two days.
To keep the dish longer, freeze the risotto into single servings. Use freezer-safe containers or bags, and remember to label them with the date.
Reheating Risotto: A gentle touch is needed to restore the creamy consistency.
Transfer the chilled risotto to a pan over low heat.
Add a dash of water or broth. Stirring gently, reheat the risotto until it’s warmed through and has regained its creamy texture.
Get Creative: Leftover risotto can be transformed into delicious arancini (Italian rice balls) by forming small risotto balls, stuffing them with cheese or other fillings, coating them in breadcrumbs, and frying them until golden brown.
They make for a perfect appetizer or snack.
Freezer Tips: If you’ve frozen the risotto, thaw it in the refrigerator overnight before reheating. The texture may change slightly upon freezing, but gradual thawing and reheating with added liquid can help restore its lushness.
Traditional Italian risotto with Mushrooms
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- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 10 ounces mushrooms, sliced
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 medium-sized white onion, finely chopped
- 1 cup Arborio rice
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 4 cup broth
- Handful of fresh parsley, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Optional: Prepare vegetable broth or use store-bought broth.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a pan and cook the mushrooms with the whole garlic garlic. When the mushrooms are cooked, remove the garlic and set aside the mushrooms.
- Add another tablespoon of olive oil in the same pan and sauté the chopped onion until transparent. Add the rice and toast it for 2-3 minutes.
- Pour in the white wine and let it evaporate.
- Gradually add the vegetable broth, stirring constantly.
- Once the rice is almost al dente and creamy but still has some bite, stir in the browned mushrooms.
- Turn off the heat and stir in the Parmesan cheese, butter, and parsley until well combined.
- Serve hot, and enjoy the creamy mushroom risotto!
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 284Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 26mgSodium: 238mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 2gSugar: 3gProtein: 7g
Nutrition is automatically calculated by Nutritionix - please verify all nutrition information independently and consult with a doctor or nutritionist for any and all medical and diet advice.
Can I make this recipe vegan?
Yes, you can!
Simply swap the butter with a vegan alternative, omit the Parmesan cheese, or use a vegan
cheese substitute like nutritional yeast, and ensure your vegetable broth is vegan-friendly.
Can I add other ingredients to the risotto?
Yes! While this recipe focuses on the beautiful combination of mushrooms and risotto, feel free to get creative.
Add cooked vegetables, herbs, or proteins like chicken or shrimp to customize your risotto.
How do I know when the risotto is cooked?
The risotto is cooked when it is creamy, and the rice grains are tender with a slight bite (al dente).
Taste a grain of rice to check for doneness. It should be cooked through but not mushy.
Can I use dried porcini mushrooms instead of fresh ones?
Yes, you can use dried mushrooms in this recipe.
Soak them in warm water for about 20 minutes to rehydrate them before cooking. Save the soaking liquid to add extra flavor to your risotto.
Can I substitute white wine or omit it?
Yes, you can definitely omit or substitute the wine as needed. Just replace it with more broth.