Winter Squash Risotto

Winter Squash Risotto

16 Reviews
From: EatingWell Magazine, September/October 2007

Sweet winter squash and earthy shiitake mushrooms are delicious in this creamy risotto.

Ingredients 4 servings

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Original recipe yields 4 servings
Nutrition per serving may change if servings are adjusted.
  • 5 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth, or vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 medium shallots, thinly sliced
  • 3 cups chopped peeled butternut, hubbard, red kuri or kabocha squash ( ½-inch pieces)
  • 2 cups shiitake mushroom caps, thinly sliced
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • ⅛ teaspoon crumbled saffron threads, (optional)
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • ½ cup dry white wine, or dry vermouth
  • ½ cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese


  • Active

  • Ready In

  1. Place broth in a medium saucepan; bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat so the broth remains steaming, but is not simmering.
  2. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add shallots; cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in squash and mushrooms; cook, stirring often, until the mushrooms give off their liquid, about 5 minutes. Add thyme, salt, pepper and saffron (if using); cook for 30 seconds. Add rice; stir until translucent, about 1 minute. Add wine (or vermouth) and cook, stirring, until almost absorbed by the rice, about 1 minute.
  3. Stir in ½ cup of the hot broth; reduce heat to a gentle simmer and cook, stirring constantly, until the liquid has been absorbed. Continue adding the broth ½ cup at a time, stirring after each addition until all the liquid has been absorbed, until the rice is tender and creamy, 30 to 40 minutes total. (You may have some broth left.) Remove from the heat and stir in cheese.
  • Note: Literally the dried stigma from Crocus sativus, saffron is the world's most expensive spice. Over 75,000 flowers are required for each pound of saffron. Fortunately, a little goes a long way. It's used sparingly to add golden yellow color and flavor to a wide variety of Middle Eastern, African and European-inspired foods. Find it in the specialty-herb section of large supermarkets, gourmet-food shops and Wrapped in foil and placed in a container with a tight-fitting lid, it will keep in a cool, dry place for several years.

Nutrition information

  • Serving size: about 1½ cups
  • Per serving: 405 calories; 10 g fat(3 g sat); 5 g fiber; 64 g carbohydrates; 12 g protein; 57 mcg folate; 9 mg cholesterol; 6 g sugars; 0 g added sugars; 11,398 IU vitamin A; 24 mg vitamin C; 148 mg calcium; 2 mg iron; 1,174 mg sodium; 788 mg potassium
  • Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (228% daily value), Vitamin C (40% dv)
  • Carbohydrate Servings:
  • Exchanges: 2½ starch, 1 vegetable, 2 fat

Reviews 16

October 12, 2018
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By: Natalie Chapla
I've made this recipe numerous times... YUM, YUM!!!! Used delicata squash tonight (usually use butternut). Delicious as always!!!!
December 29, 2015
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By: EatingWell User
Average for amount of work I thought the recipe would be delicious but it was just average. For the amount of time it took me to make this and reduce the wine each time by 1/2 cup, I would never make it again. There are lots of other vegetarian recipes out there that make delicious meals. Cons: Takes a long time for little flavor
October 27, 2013
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By: rheyman
Loved this recipe I roasted the squash first, which made it easier to cut and also allowed the sweet flavor of the squash to infuse the risotto. Pros: Healthy and Delicious Cons: None
February 04, 2012
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By: EatingWell User
I followed another reviewer's advice and cut ths squash into smaller cubes. I could't find shiitake, so I used small portabella, and fresh thyme, along with homemade chicken stock. Very tasty, very satisfying.
January 08, 2012
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By: EatingWell User
Delicious and creamy, not heavy This was delicious. I added a little extra squash, as well as some vegan ground beef. It was satisfying and made for a good dinner by itself.
December 12, 2011
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By: EatingWell User
I loved this This recipe was so tasty! I have never cooked risotto or cooked with butternut squash but this recipe was easy. I cut the squash in 1/2 cubes and it came out perfectly. Otherwise, I followed the instructions exactly. The saffron added great flavor. I was surprised at how the flavor of butternut squash ran through the entire dish making it almost candied. I highly recommend. Pros: delicious Cons: time consuming
November 26, 2011
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By: Yelena Y.
My first risotto I'm new to this, and I think I did everything right, and it was delicious. I doubled the rice portion and tripled the mushroom portion because I had a surplus of both. I feel like the squash doesn't add much to the recipe, but it's also my first time experimenting with butternut squash. I did what others recommended - I parboiled the squash, and I think it may have been better if I made much smaller cubes of the squash. Pros: Easy and delicious Cons: May need larger portions
November 23, 2011
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By: EatingWell User
Came out great Followed the recipe with a few minor changes. I did listen to previous reviews and cut the squash up smaller. Cooked it for longer than 5 minutes, just to make sure it would be cooked all the way by the end. Used baby bella mushrooms instead. Even though it's not eating well, I added two tablespoons of butter when I added the cheese at the end. Pros: Budget friendly
June 09, 2011
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By: undergroundbee
Tasty and easy! I really loved this recipe. This was my first risotto recipe that I made it myself and I absolutely loved it. The risotto came out very flavorful and creamy - it did take time to cook up but recipe and ingredients are simple enough that I didnt' have to buy any extra herbs and seasoning that i might not use again. Great budget saver! Pros: healthy, great lunch and dinner Cons: it's time consuming to cut up kuri kabocha
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