This light risotto from Twin Cities food blogger greens & chocolate is easy as can be — and a great way to make the most of spring veggies.
Risotto might sound intimidating, but don’t let it scare you! It’s one of my favorite dishes to make, and while it requires a little bit of hands-on stirring, it’s a great excuse to pour a glass of wine and just enjoy the cooking process.
I’ve made many kinds of risotto over the years and they’re all special in their own way. This Carrot Risotto is perfect for the springtime and would be an amazing Easter brunch side dish.
It starts by drizzling some olive oil onto rainbow carrots and placing them in the oven to roast. These carrots are for serving and make this dish look oh-so-pretty! I served them whole on the side as I thought they were really pretty that way. If you’re serving this to a large group, you can chop them into big chunks and serve them on top.
While the carrots are roasting, you’ll make the actual risotto. The first step is to sauté leeks, shallots, diced carrots and garlic. I used regular orange carrots in the risotto, but you can use rainbow carrots if you want. After the vegetables are softened, the Arborio rice is added, along with some white wine to deglaze the pan. I always use whatever white wine I have open (risotto is also a great excuse to open a bottle of wine!), which is usually something like Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc. You can really use whatever wine you like, or if you don’t want to open a bottle, use white cooking wine.
This is the part where things get more hands on. You’ll add warm chicken broth to the risotto in about 1-cup increments, stirring and waiting until the rice has absorbed each addition before adding more. As I said, it’s not hard, but you have to be next to the stove most of the time. At the end, a generous portion of Parmesan cheese is stirred in, making this risotto super creamy and delicious. Topped off with some fresh chives and those roasted carrots, this Carrot Risotto is absolutely divine!
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 30 to 40 minutes
5 to 6 whole rainbow carrots
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 large leek, white and light green part halved and then cut into half moon slices
1 large shallot, sliced
3 large carrots, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup Arborio rice
½ cup white wine
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
Chopped chives, for topping
- Heat the oven to 425 F.
- Place the rainbow carrots on a baking sheet and drizzle 2 tablespoons of olive oil over them.
- Place them in the oven and roast for 25 to 30 minutes, until softened and slightly golden.
- Meanwhile, heat the chicken broth in a saucepan over medium heat.
- Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil and butter to a large skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add the leek, shallots and diced carrots and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened.
- Add the garlic and cook for another minute.
- Stir the rice into the vegetables and cook for about a minute.
- Add the wine to deglaze the pan and stir until well absorbed.
- Add the chicken broth, 1 cup at a time, letting the rice absorb each addition before adding the next cup.
- Once all of the broth has been added and absorbed, stir in the Parmesan cheese.
- Serve topped with the roasted carrots* and chives. Enjoy!
*You can chop the roasted carrots into larger chunks or serve them whole.