These arborio rice recipes will give you a whole new appreciation for the little grain.
Let’s first discuss the elephant in the writing. This list is basically a list of risotto recipes.
But that’s okay because risotto is amazing, and arborio rice really does make the best risotto.
But this high-starch, short-grain rice also makes fabulous rice pudding.
Arborio rice works so well in these dishes because of its starchiness.
As it cooks, starches release and add creaminess to every dish.
And both risottos and puddings must be creamy.
Here are 17 of my favorite, utterly scrumptious arborio rice recipes.
1. Creamy Stovetop Arborio Rice Pudding
Let’s start with dessert first because you only live once! But I’ll be honest, I’ll totally eat this for breakfast, too.
The pudding itself is creamy and smooth. It has a light cream flavor, with a hint of vanilla. Every spoonful is milky and delicious.
But then you add the stewed golden raisins, which kicks things up a notch.
They’re cooked in Grand Marnier, cinnamon, and orange zest. They’re wonderfully warm and citrusy.
Each bite is like a hug for your mouth.
2. Creamy Parmesan Risotto
And now, I’ll start the list of risottos with a salty classic: parmesan risotto.
If you’ve never experienced this simple, flavorful dish, now is the time. You’ll love it.
It takes a little time (and a little arm workout), but it’s so worth it.
Chicken stock, onions, butter, and fresh parmesan guarantee loads of flavor.
The natural starches of the rice, plus the bit of dairy create silky smooth textures.
Top it with fresh parsley and serve it alongside your favorite meat and veggies.
It’s perfect as a side dish or a simple dinner. And the leftovers, if you have any, are fabulous any time of day!
3. Mushroom Risotto
If a hearty bowl of creamy, buttery savory goodness sounds absolutely amazing, try mushroom risotto.
Be careful, though, because one bowl will never be enough.
This risotto features caramelized shallots, buttery, garlicky mushrooms, and rich cream.
The best part is that there’s no treasure-hunting for mushrooms in this dish.
Every bite is earthy, robust, and bursting with mushrooms. It’s fabulous.
4. Creamy Garlic Parmesan Risotto
Is there anything better than garlic, butter, and cheese? How about some white wine?
Because this risotto has some of that, too.
This risotto is unbelievably flavorful and creamy, practically velvet in your mouth.
That’s thanks to the garlic, butter, stock, and parmesan.
Wine adds depth while cutting the richness of the dairy with a bite of acidity.
It’s simple and it’s perfect. You really can’t get much better than this.
5. Creamy Vegetable Risotto
Given the creamy nature of risotto, you might be surprised to learn it’s pretty healthy.
The average, non-cream-based risotto, anyway. And this particular risotto is even healthier!
Say hello to your new cheat day meal! It’s amazing because it’s not even unhealthy.
So, it satisfies all your cravings, but it’s not really cheating.
This risotto is full of good grains and nutritious veggies like peppers, broccolini, and asparagus.
Plus, it’s unbelievably creamy and well-balanced.
6. Cheesy Chicken Risotto with Broccoli
This is a dish the whole family will love! With juicy chunks of chicken, gooey cheese, and tender broccoli, you really can’t go wrong.
It’s filling, nutritious, and delectable.
And it has enough cheese to please any midwestern palette.
7. Lemon Chicken Risotto
Calling all lemon lovers! This is the dish for you. It’s bright and punchy, and it will tickle your tongue with tantalizing flavors.
It features succulent lemon pepper chicken thighs and a light lemon risotto.
You’ll also notice garlic, parmesan, white wine, and basil.
8. Classic Spinach Risotto
The best way to get more nutrition into your diet is to add healthy ingredients like veggies to dishes you already love.
And this spinach risotto is the perfect example.
The risotto itself is your average buttery, garlicky, parmesan-filled risotto. It’s easy and delicious.
You also add lots of fresh spinach to this dish.
It’s so simple, but it elevates the dish so much. Spinach adds both flavor and nutrition. #winning
9. Shrimp Risotto
This shrimp risotto is a fun French twist on the Southern classic, shrimp and grits. And whoa, it’s dangerously good!
This dish features classic risotto and shrimp sauteed in a rich butter sauce. Oh man, I’m drooling.
While already delicious, I think this would be amazing with red pepper flakes and parmesan.
10. Spring Risotto with Asparagus and Peas
Spring into flavor with this delicious dish! It stars your favorite risotto, plus a few healthy greens.
This risotto is light yet filling, and totally perfect for a summer evening.
11. No-Stir Creamy Lemon and Herb Baked Risotto
I love risotto, but it tends to come with an arm workout.
And if I’m feeling a bit lazy, I don’t want to stir for an hour. So, this recipe is the perfect solution!
All you have to do is dump and bake, with a bit of stirring at the end.
The result is the same creamy risotto you love. This one features bright lemon, dill, parsley, and chives.
12. Leftover Turkey Risotto
The best way to use Thanksgiving leftovers is to make Thanksgiving dinner sandwiches.
You know, the sandwiches with turkey plus every side available squished between a dinner roll.
But the second best way to use your leftover Thanksgiving turkey is this risotto.
Turkey broth, parmesan, white wine, onions, butter, and rice come together in this delicious dish.
And we can’t forget the meaty chunks of leftover turkey!
Every bite is seriously decadent. And it’s even better served with a bit of cranberry sauce on top.
13. Seared Salmon with Lemon Risotto
Lemon risotto is a classic risotto, right up there with parmesan risotto. And it’s classic for a reason, as it’s delicious.
Plus, it goes well with all kinds of entrees.
In this case, it pairs with seared salmon. This dish strikes a wonderful balance between light and luxury.
The fish is light and flaky, while the risotto is so creamy and rich.
Everything is topped with bright lemon, so all the flavors pop!
14. Green Risotto
This might be the freshest risotto on this list. It’s incredibly verdant, herbaceous, and vibrant. Oh, and it’s delicious, too!
The beautiful green color comes from bunches of fresh spinach, basil, and parsley.
15. Sausage Mushroom Risotto
If you want a filling, delicious, easy dinner, look no further.
This sausage and mushroom risotto is so cozy and so incredibly tasty. The whole family will love it!
It’s filled with bold Italian sausage and butter and garlic-sauteed mushrooms.
You’ll also notice lots of fresh herbs like rosemary and thyme. A bit of parmesan adds the final touch!
16. Tomato Risotto
If you love rice and tomato soup, then you’ll really adore this!
It’s sort of like a fancier version of your favorite marinara pasta. But it has the creaminess of tomato soup.
And everything is incredibly fresh, so it feels really light, despite its creaminess.
It has fresh tomatoes, basil, garlic, onions, white wine, and chicken broth.
Plus, it has mascarpone, pecorino romano, and parmesan cheeses. So, it’s creamy, tangy, salty, and delectable.
17. Italian Four Cheese Risotto
This is the kind of dish where more is more. After all, one type of cheese is delicious but four kinds of cheese are even better!
And I guarantee one plateful won’t be enough either.
This recipe has everything you want in a risotto.
It features white wine, arborio rice (duh), flavorful broth, onions, butter, and seasonings. But cheese is truly the star of this show.
This recipe calls for salty parmesan, nutty Swiss, earthy fontal, and robust gorgonzola cheeses.
How yummy is that? Of course, you can substitute any of your favorite cheeses.
Move aside mac ‘n’ cheese!
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