Basic Risotto

Basic Risotto

8 Reviews
From: EatingWell Magazine, January/February 2011

Slowly adding hot broth to arborio rice helps release the starch from the rice, giving risotto its characteristic silky, creamy texture. We add a splash of wine along with each addition of broth to give the dish a more pronounced wine flavor. If you'd prefer the wine to be more subtle, add the entire cup at the end of Step 2 and cook, stirring, until the liquid is absorbed, then begin adding the broth. If you prefer to omit wine, use more broth in its place.

Ingredients 8 servings

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Original recipe yields 8 servings
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  • 5 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth, beef broth, seafood stock, bottled clam juice, “no-chicken” broth or vegetable broth (see Notes)
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped shallots or onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1½ cups arborio, carnaroli or other Italian “risotto” rice
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup finely shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, divided
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste


  • Active

  • Ready In

  1. Bring broth to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat so the broth remains steaming, but is not simmering.
  2. Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-low heat. Add shallots (or onion) and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 2 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add rice and salt and stir to coat.
  3. Stir ½ cup of the hot broth and a generous splash of wine into the rice. Cook, stirring frequently, until the liquid has been absorbed. Continue to cook on medium-low, adding broth in ½-cup increments followed by a splash of wine, and stirring frequently after each addition, until most of the liquid is absorbed. The risotto is done when you've used all the broth and wine and the rice is creamy and just tender, 25 to 35 minutes total.
  4. Remove from the heat; stir in ¾ cup cheese and pepper. Serve sprinkled with the remaining ¼ cup cheese.
  • Notes: Bottled clam juice can be very high in sodium. We like Bar Harbor brand, which has 120 mg sodium per 2-ounce serving. Look for it in the canned-fish section or the seafood department of your supermarket.
  • Chicken-flavored broth, a vegetarian broth despite its name, is preferable to vegetable broth in some recipes for its hearty, rich flavor. Sometimes called “No-Chicken Broth,” it can be found with the soups in the natural-foods section of most supermarkets.

Nutrition information

  • Serving size: about ⅔ cup
  • Per serving: 242 calories; 6 g fat(2 g sat); 1 g fiber; 32 g carbohydrates; 9 g protein; 12 mcg folate; 7 mg cholesterol; 1 g sugars; 0 g added sugars; 325 IU vitamin A; 2 mg vitamin C; 137 mg calcium; 1 mg iron; 593 mg sodium; 228 mg potassium
  • Carbohydrate Servings: 2
  • Exchanges: 2 starch, 1 fat

Reviews 8

October 19, 2018
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By: Jackstng
Delicious and easy recipe. So satisfying for all of the family. It's a "go to" recipe and I've made it often over the years.
February 28, 2018
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By: Mary Lola
It's just perfect. Delicious. My husband loved it. It took about of an hour, but it worth it. I added cooked shrimps with the last 1/2 cup of broth. Really great recipe.
March 12, 2017
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By: Debra Kawaller
I am not sure I liked adding the wine with each addition of broth. I could still taste the wine. I usually add all the wine up front to cook off the wine taste. It's possible the wine I chose was not a good choice. I added a bit of butter at the end of cooking and liked the flavor. It did take a long time to cook the rice and you do need to constantly stir but that's Risotto. I have made risotto in a slow cooker and it works fine if you are entertaining. No need to constantly stir. I make a big pot full and use leftovers to make rice balls. They are amazing!
February 19, 2017
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By: Efrem
This came out very well and is hard to get wrong. However, it took longer than expected (as EatingWell User also reported). Also, it is not something that can simmer while you socialize. Adding liquid in ten half-cup increments, and stirring between them, means you're at the stove at least every minute or two for about 45 minutes. You can work on other kitchen tasks, but don't plan on going into the living room to mix with your company.
January 15, 2017
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By: Beth
I made 1/2 the recipe since it was just for 2 of us and it turned out perfect. I didn't time it, but added broth and wine in the quantities of the full recipe and it was done with the last addition. I'll definitely make it again and possibly add sautéed mushrooms or other vegetables.
January 09, 2017
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By: Swetybear
Turned out perfectly. Makes a flavourful side dish that the whole family loved. I will definitely make this again. I also plan to make some of the other versions. Just takes at least an hour to make sure that the rice is tender.
May 20, 2015
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By: EatingWell User
Simple, but takes longer than instructed I like this simple, basic risotto recipe. InBev used it a few times, but I find that I have to use more liquid and longer than 30 minutes for my rice to get tender and not to have that crunchy center. It takes almost an hour to get toothsome. You must try a kernel every few in order to see what works for you. Otherwise great recipe.
February 10, 2011
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By: Pamela Purcell Turner
Delicious and worth the extra bit of work. I loved this recipe. Definitely worth the bit of extra time vs. just a simple rice as a side dish. It pleased a picky 9 year old, a 7 year old, and a "foodie" hubby. Definitely a keeper! Served it as a side to the crockpot Wine and Tomato Chicken recipe. Perfect! Pros: Delicious flavor, versatile side dish, family favorite. Cons: Take a bit of time and babysitting.
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