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Pumpkin Risotto: A Flavorful Easy Recipe

Pumpkin risotto is a quick and easy recipe for a great Fall dinner that celebrates the delicate goodness of pumpkin.

risotto with pumpkin scoop in the spoon

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Creamy & Easy Pumpkin Risotto

It may seem difficult to prepare a delicious risotto, but it is not. 

Just a few steps that if followed will make you cook the best risotto you have ever made in your life.

The result will be a perfectly cooked and creamy risotto. 

Creamy & Easy Pumpkin Risotto in a plate garnished with  basil

Ingredients In This Pumpkin Risotto

These are the main ingredients you need for this risotto

For the step-by-step directions and measurements, scroll down to the printable recipe card. 

  • Pumpkin: We can use different types of pumpkin to prepare pumpkin risotto. 

What pumpkin to use in pumpkin risotto?

Butternut squash:  Shaped like a bell, it can be recognized by its smooth pale orange skin. The yellow/orange pulp is firm but tender when cooked.

It has a nutty aftertaste flavor and  is very sweet. It is perfect for making risotto. In fact, I used this pumpkin in this recipe.

Delica Pumpkin:  It has green skin with whitish streaks, is compact and slightly flattened shape.

Its yellow-orange pulp is dense and floury, with a sweet flavor tending toward chestnut or hazelnut.

Priest’s Hat Pumpkin or Berrettina Pumpkin:  It is recognizable by its shape. It has a rind between homogeneous sage green and gray, broadly ribbed.

Its pulp is dense and also free of filaments and therefore very starchy with a sweet flavor.

Hokkaido pumpkin: It calls for sweetness, intense and particularly close to that of chestnuts, so warm and enveloping.

For risotto it is perfect, and do you know a secret? The peel is also 100% edible, and you can put it in the risotto.

  • Rice: A perfect risotto requires rice that holds its cooking well, absorbs the seasonings very well, releases the right amount of starch, and “creams” while keeping the grains well intact and separated. 

The Best Type of Rice for Risotto

Among the various types of rice, our preference is for Vialone nano, Arborio and Carnaroli, varieties with different characteristics but all very suitable.

Vialone nano: A high-quality rice type, it has low stickiness, high texture and high amylose content.

The grains are medium and round, remain very compact and grow a lot while cooking.

Arborio: It has a good cooking hold, a characteristic that makes it ideal for preparing any rice dish. Perfect for making risotto.

Carnaroli: One of the best-known rices, with very large, tapered grains that absorb seasonings perfectly, it has excellent cooking firmness.

  • Wine: Use dry white wine. Deglazing with wine obviously serves to give it a special flavor.
  • Stock: It is the liquid used for cooking rice. You can prepare it at home or use the ready-made one.
  • Butter: The ingredient that is used for the mantecatura. It gives a fantastic creaminess.
  • Parmesan cheese: Absolutely must not be missing for the preparation of this risotto.
  • Onions: Use the golden onions. I love the rich onion taste. you can substitute with shallots which has a milder flavor.

How To Make This Easy Butternut Risotto

Prepare the broth: In a pot put water to boil with a carrot, some celery and an onion.

Let it boil for 10 minutes and then turn the heat down to low to keep it hot. As a substitute, you can use ready-made broth.

Prepare the ingredients: Peel and cut the squash into not too large squares. Chop the onion.

Cook the pumpkin: In a pan with a drizzle of oil, soften the onion over low heat . When the onion is soft, add the pumpkin and a ladle of broth. And cook until the pumpkin is soft. 

Blend half the pumpkin: This is the secret to a super smooth risotto. Blend half the pumpkin and set aside.

Toast the rice: In the same pan with the squash, toast the rice. 

This will help the rice stay crispier, the rice does not flake and releases the starch gradually making the risotto naturally creamier. 

Gradually add the broth: After the rice is toasted, gradually add the broth and stir very often. Follow the cooking time given in the rice package.

Manteca the risotto: When the cooking is finished, turn off the flame and manteca the butter and parmesan cheese for crazy creaminess.

As a final step enjoy your creamy risotto.

How to make this Easy Pumpkin risotto step by step

Tips for Making Pumpkin Risotto – What Is The Secret To A Good Risotto?

  • Always toast the rice: This is to make the grain hold well. The grain is sealed so that it does not flake during cooking.
  • Blend half the pumpkin: Trust me, it will make this risotto super creamy.
  • Keep the broth hot: Pouring it cold would cause the rice to suffer heat shock and stop cooking,
  • Always taste while cooking: Although there are directions for cooking times, they are never totally reliable. The only way to check if the rice is cooked is to taste, without looking at the clock.
photo of risotto with pumpkin close up

Variations To Try Out

You can add ingredients to make an even saucier risotto.

Try pumpkin and sausage risotto if you are a meat lover, but also chicken and pumpkin risotto are great together.

Instead, try pumpkin and gorgonzola risotto if you love bold, intense flavors.

Making Vegan Pumpkin Risotto

Remove the parmesan cheese or replace it with the vegan version.

Pumpkin Risotto FAQs

Do you cover risotto while cooking?

No you don’t have to cover it with the lid. Cooking risotto is different, as it simmers until the liquid fully absorbs.

Do I have to use arborio rice for risotto?

Other rice good for make risotto is Vialone nano and Carnarol.

Do you need to wash arborio rice before cooking?

No, rinsing is not recommended for arborio nor the types of rice used to prepare risotto. You risk removing starches.

Can you make risotto without wine?

Yes, 100%.
Replace it with an extra cup of broth.

Can I make risotto with water instead of stock?

Yes. It will give it less flavor but it can be done.

Do you cook risotto on high or low heat?

Risotto should be cooked on a low heat.

What happens if you add all the water to risotto at once? 

The broth should be added a few ladles at a time to be gradually absorbed by the rice grains. Why? Because only then will the grains release the starches well, which will make the risotto creamy and bound.

Creamy Pumpkin Risotto Recipe

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pumpkin risotto in a plate
Yield: 2 people

Creamy Pumpkin Risotto Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

The most delicious pumpkin risotto to make this season!

Ingredients

  • 4 1/4 cups Broth
  • 9 oz Pumpkin, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup Rice (Carnaroli rice, or Arborio or Vialone Nano)
  • 1 small Onion
  • 1/2 cup Dry White Wine
  • 1 cup Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
  • Salt & Black pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons Butter

Instructions

  1. Prepare a vegetable broth (carrots, celery, onion) or use a ready-made one. Keep the broth hot.
  2. Peel and cut pumpkin into small pieces and chop onion.
  3. In a large pot, heat some olive oil and soften the chopped onion for about 5 minutes over low heat.
  4. Add the squash season it with salt and pepper and a ladle of broth, and cook for about 10 minutes until softened. Add more broth if needed. Add salt blaco pepper
  5. Blend half the squash with an immersion blender, adding half a ladle of broth, and set aside.
  6. In the same pot with the remaining squash, toast the rice for 4 minutes. Add white wine.
  7. As soon as the wine evaporates, add a couple ladlefuls of broth and keep adding some each time the rice dries out, to cook it without sticking. Stir the risotto very frequently. This will take about 15 to 18 minutes. Add salt and pepper if needed.
  8. When the rice is cooked, add the pumpkin you blend earlier and mix well.
  9. At this point turn off the heat and manteca (stir) the risotto with the butter and Parmesan cheese.
  10. Serve piping hot.

Notes

What is the best way to reheat risotto?

Risotto can be heated in the microwave, on the stove, or in the oven. To prevent it from becoming too dry, just add a little broth

Can you freeze risotto?

​​Yes you can, for a maximum of three months. After it has cooled, freeze it in an airtight container.

Can I prepare pumpkin risotto the day before? 

Yes, but let the rice cook until al dente,so you can avoid overcooked rice, so when you want to serve it just reheat it in a pan with the addition of a ladle of broth. 

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

2

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 688Total Fat: 32gSaturated Fat: 17gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 89mgSodium: 2019mgCarbohydrates: 59gFiber: 2gSugar: 13gProtein: 31g

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.

Did you make this recipe?

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 Suggestion: Things To Serve With Pumpkin Risotto –  What Goes Well With Risotto?

Risotto for me is a one-dish meal and is usually served alone, just like pasta.

But it can be served as a side dish with almost any meat.

Great with these delicious crispy chicken cutlets, but also accompanied by a salad is great combination.


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