All in one pot, with comforting fall flavours and luxurious enough for special occasions, this lovely butternut squash risotto deserves a place on your go-to recipes list. A drizzle of nutty brown butter and crispy sage takes it to another, gorgeous level of flavour.
Risotto is always a go-to comfort food favourite for me, and this gorgeously autumnal version is so lovely for the cooler months.
It very much feels like fall on a plate with the roasted butternut pumpkin, nutty brown butter and sage, and is just such a gorgeous meal for a cold day. It’s also impressive enough for date night, Friendsgiving or dinner parties (and I share a great hack for making it ahead of time that I picked up at Le Cordon Bleu in London).
You can cut down the cooking time by roasting the butternut squash ahead of time too if you like – it will last for 5 days in the fridge so it’s a great meal prep task for a Sunday. Plus, any leftovers mean you have the PERFECT excuse to make cheesy stuffed arancini (which also make a very lovely party bite or appetizer).
- Rice. It’s important you use the right rice when you’re making risotto – look for anything labelled arborio, carnaroli or risotto rice.
- Butternut squash. I like to roast it in two halves (this saves lots of tricky peeling and chopping) until it’s super soft, sweet and charred. Then it’s soft enough to scoop straight out of its skin into the risotto.
- Stock. Use vegetable or chicken stock, whichever you prefer.
- Wine. I like to use rosé, but you can use regular white wine. Skip it if you’d like an alcohol-free version.
- Chorizo. This is to scatter on top of the risotto to serve. You could use bacon if you like, or leave it off to make it vegetarian.
How to make it
Slice your squash down the middle, scoop out the seeds and drizzle with olive oil. Roast until super soft and charred, about 45 minutes.
PRO TIP: You can do this ahead of time – scoop out the flesh then pop into the fridge until you’re ready to make your risotto (it’ll keep well for 5 days).
Cook the onion until soft, then add garlic. Pour in the rice and mix it through, then add the wine. Let it bubble up as the alcohol evaporates for a minute or so, then add the butternut squash flesh. Stir the squash through the rice, then you can start adding the stock.
Keep adding the stock, a ladleful at a time, until it’s absorbed by the rice. Once the rice is super creamy and al dente (cooked, with a little bite to it), add the grated parmesan and stir it through. This will make it extra creamy and delicious. Finish with a squeeze of lemon juice, then brown your butter and crisp up the sage leaves in the butter to serve.
Got a question?
You absolutely can. I picked up a great trick from Le Cordon Bleu in London about how to do this the way a lot of restaurants prep their risotto, and it works perfectly. Follow the recipe, but once you’ve added about half the stock, spread out the risotto on a lined tray to cool. Spreading it out helps it cool faster, so the rice doesn’t continue to cook. Cover with clingfilm and pop into the fridge.
When you’re ready to serve, just transfer the risotto back to a pot, and continue to follow the recipe, adding the rest of the stock. This should only take about 10 minutes. I tend to do this if I’m making risotto for a dinner party – that way, you’re not standing over the stove the whole time, worrying about your risotto.
Yes, you can – just use vegetable stock, skip the crispy chorizo, and make sure your parmesan is vegetarian.
Either in the microwave at 30 second intervals or on the stovetop. Add a splash of water when you reheat it, just to loosen the risotto up (the rice will have absorbed a lot of the liquid as it sits in the fridge). You can store the risotto in the fridge for up to 3 days.
What to make with leftover risotto
In my opinion, there’s no better excuse to make a batch of cheesy stuffed arancini balls. Usually, I add mozzarella to the middle, but for leftovers of this risotto, I love to add brie or camembert. This makes them lovely little festive bites, perfect for entertaining over the holiday season.
- Make little rice balls with your hands, then pop in a cube of brie or camembert (cut the rind off if you like).
- Dust each ball in flour, then dip in egg and panko breadcrumbs.
- Fry for a couple of minutes, until super golden and crispy on the outside.
I love to serve these with sweet chilli jam on the side, or a drizzle of hot honey sauce. To make them, follow the recipe in this post about arancini, and replace the mozzarella with brie or camembert.
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If you make this recipe, I’d love to hear from you! You can leave me a comment below.Print