After many, many attempts, practices and creations, I have discovered how to make perfect risotto — creamy and rich — every time. And with these tips, you can too!
First, though, there’s something we need to talk about: patience. Making risotto is part technique, part patience. And when you master both, you’ll risotto making technique will be flawless.
Now, who’s ready to get cooking?
Do’s and Don’ts for a Perfect Risotto
DO have 4 cups of broth/stock at the ready for every 1 cup of risotto rice. You might not use it all, but in my experience, the majority of the 4 cups is needed for a creamy end result.
DO heat your broth/stock in a separate pan on low for about 10 minutes before you start making the risotto — if you want. Warm broth will absorb faster but really, room temperature broth doesn’t slow down the cooking much.
DON’T walk away while making risotto — be sure that you have a solid block of at least 30 minutes to dedicate to making risotto. While you don’t need to constantly stir, you do need to be present to ensure that broth is added at the appropriate time, every time.
DON’T forget the ancillary flavorings like salt, pepper, rosemary, basil and parsley. These are added at the end and transform ordinary risotto into something amazing.
DO prep your ingredients. When you’ve chopped everything that needs to be chopped, measured everything that needs to be measured and gotten out everything that needs to be gotten out, the cooking process runs much smoother.
DO choose your broth wisely. Recipes often call for chicken broth because it has a mild flavor. Other broths and stocks can be used too, but be aware of how they will alter the flavors of your risotto. For instance, beef broth may overpower other flavors. Vegetable broths are all different — if you choose to go this route, be sure you like the flavor of the broth (some are very carroty, others are very mushroomy, others taste strongly of onions).
DON’T be afraid to experiment with flavors and ingredients. Just keep the liquid to rice ratio the same and things will be okay.
Find the Right Risotto Recipe for You
What variety of risotto would you like to make? These risotto recipes are all delightful wants to enjoy the classic rice dish.
Sarah Walker Caron is a cookbook author, freelance writer and founder of Sarah’s Cucina Bella. She is the author of several cookbooks including The Super Easy 5-Ingredient Cookbook and One-Pot Pasta, both from Rockridge Press. A single mother to two kids in middle school, Sarah loves nightly family dinners, juicy tomatoes plucked fresh from the vine and lazy days on the beach. She also adores reading and traveling.