You will love this creamy Authentic Italian Asparagus Risotto Recipe. It is perfect for a meatless main dish or wonderful topped with lemon butter scallops. This vegetarian asparagus risotto recipe uses a mushroom broth to add a hearty undertone that pairs perfectly with the fresh asparagus.
This is a must-try recipe with ALL the TIPS to get it right. Risotto is an Italian restaurant-worthy showstopper you can make right at home! Wondering what to serve with risotto? Check out What to Serve with Risotto (35 best side dishes). You can also read more about the Difference between Risotto and Orzo!
- Mushroom or vegetable broth
- Olive oil
- Arborio rice
- Dry white wine
- Parmigiano cheese (more for serving)
How to Make the Perfect Italian Risotto
Use Cold Stock
Adding chilly stock to a hot pan will cool everything down and mess up the cooking process. Keep stock at a simmer in a small pan so everything stays hot and cooks evenly.
Stir It Constantly (or Not at All)
Stirring the rice constantly will add air into the risotto, cooling it down and making it gluey. But if you don't stir enough, the rice will stick to the bottom and burn. Agitating the rice is important, because risotto's creaminess comes from the starch generated when grains of rice rub against each other. So stir it often, but feel free to give your arms (and the rice) a break.
Add Too Much Stock
If you dump in the stock all at once, you're just boiling rice. By slowly adding stock, you allow the rice to bump up against each other, creating that creamy starch. Wait until the rice absorbs all the stock to add some more. And keep in mind the ratio--about 4 cups of stock for every cup of arborio rice.
Cook the Rice Till It's Mushy
Like pasta, the rice should be al dente--just cooked, with a little bite to it. If you can mold a risotto into a shape (yes, like some restaurants do) you've cooked it too much. Risotto should have body, but not be overly mushy and starchy. You're not making rice pudding!
Use a Wide Pot
If your pot is too wide, the rice will cook in a thin layer and won't be able to bump and grind enough to generate starch. Another problem: there will be hot and cold spots in your pot, so choose one that fits perfectly over your burner.
Cook at Too Low a Heat
Yes, risotto is supposed to be a slower cooking process; but if you cook it at too low a heat, it will never cook. The rice should be at a medium simmer throughout cooking.
Cook Vegetables with the Rice
Except for your onions, you should add already-cooked vegetables into your risotto after the rice is finished cooking. This is especially important for tender greens like spinach, delicate herbs like chives, lemon zest, and veggies like asparagus, mushrooms, legumes. Again, you don't want anything mushy in your risotto! Make sure you cook your vegetables separately before adding them in.
Add Cheese Too Early
Save things like mascarpone and Parmesan for the end of the cooking process. Fat will break under heat and it will be, in a word, yucky. When the rice is finished, we like to stir in some fresh whipped cream (unsweetened, of course) to give the risotto a light, silky texture.
(tips from Bon Appetite Magazine)
Does the Kind of Rice Matter for Risotto?
In short, YES! Use only Italian short-grain rice varieties such as Aroborio, Carnaroli, Vialone, Nano, and Baldo (Arborio is the most commonly found short-grain rice).
Short-grain rice has a high starch content and tends to absorb less liquid, resulting in a stickier, more compact risotto.
For a successful risotto, any substituted grain must possess the same basic qualities of Arborio rice.
It must be high enough in amylose to maintain an al dente texture, even after long stovetop cooking. If you want that creamy rich risotto, I recommend using Arborio rice! Play it safe to get the result you desire!
Authentic Italian Asparagus Risotto
True to Italian cooking this recipe is simple and tasty amazing with only a few quality ingredients.
I love the bright green and fresh taste of the asparagus along with the creamy and earthy risotto infused with mushroom broth and white wine. This delicious asparagus risotto recipe is always well received with family and guests.
The asparagus cooks separately, it holds a nice firm texture and retains the natural bright green color. This is a recipe you need to make!
This recipe uses fresh asparagus and the simmering liquid used to cook the rice is a mushroom broth. Use vegetable stock, chicken, or beef broth if you prefer.
Vegetable Substitutions or additions
Spring is in full swing right now and it’s asparagus season. Take advantage of in-season produce!
Serving Suggestions for Asparagus Risotto
This creamy and delicious asparagus risotto is delicious as a main course option. If you want to make more of a fancy meal, it is delicious served with Easy Soft Italian No Knead Bread and Italian Salad Pears, Walnuts, and Gorgonzola.
This asparagus risotto is rich without being heavy, with al dente rice without being crunchy or mushy and always blessed with a blanket of parmigiano. What is better??
Mangia! Mangia! (Eat!)
Made with Amore, Elena
More Delicious Recipes for YOU
Risotto might be one of my favorites rice based dishes! I hope you enjoy this asparagus risotto for years to come. It is a staple in our Italian home.
Make sure to leave a ⭐️star rating on the recipe card and comment below if you make the recipe. I love to connect with you through my recipes.Print
- 1 ½ pounds asparagus
- 5 cups (about) mushroom or vegetable broth
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 shallots, finely chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 cups arborio rice or medium-grain white rice
- ½ cup dry white wine
- 1 cup freshly grated parmigiano cheese (more for serving)
- Trim tough ends from asparagus; discard. Cut off asparagus tips and reserve. Cut stalks into ¾-inch-long pieces. Boil water in a small pot and add asparagus. Let cook for 5 minutes until fork tender and still bright green in color. Drain asparagus, season with salt, and set aside in a covered bowl.
- In a medium pot simmer mushroom or vegetable stock on medium/ low heat
- In the large pot, heat the oil over moderately low heat. Add the shallot and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 1 more minute. Add the rice and stir until it begins to turn opaque, about 2 minutes.
- Add the wine and salt to the rice. Cook, stirring frequently, until all of the wine has been absorbed. Add about ½ cup of the simmering broth and cook, stirring frequently, until it has been absorbed. The rice and broth should bubble gently; adjust the heat as needed.
- Continue cooking the rice and stirring gently, adding broth ½ cup at a time and allowing the rice to absorb it before adding the next ½ cup.
- Cook the rice in this way until tender, 20 to 25 minutes in all. The broth that hasn’t absorbed will thicken by the starch from the rice. You may not need to use all the liquid, or you may need more broth. You want to end with a creamy mixture.
- Take off heat and add the butter and parmigiano. Stir until combined.
- Gently stir in the cooke asparagus. Serve hot and add extra parmigiano.
See tips in post notes.
- Prep Time: 10 min
- Cook Time: 30 min
- Category: Savory
- Method: Italian
- Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: risotto, main dish, side dish, asparagus, asparagus risotto, vegetarian meal, vegetarian,