Roasted Butternut Squash Risotto

Roasted Butternut Squash Risotto

I’ve always considered risotto to be the ultimate twofer in the food world—not only is it richly satisfying to eat, but it’s also one heck of a calorie-busting machine to make. Stirring anything for 20 minutes has to qualify as some sort of arm workout. Add a hot flame and the inability to sit down to the process, and I’m pretty sure Ironman just vetted “risotto-making” as a fourth leg to their course.

But all that patient stirring is well worth it when the perfectly plumped rice is paired with roasted butternut squash, Parmesan curls and fresh chives. Roasting the squash in two different forms—halved and cubed—adds double the texture to the creamy risotto base. So grab your sleekest spandex and fire up the flames as you add a little cardio to your culinary endeavors.

Roasted Butternut Squash

Toasted Risotto Rice and Onions

Squash Risotto

Squash Risotto with Parmesan

Roasted Butternut Squash Risotto

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Roasted Butternut Squash Risotto

Yield: 6 - 8 servings

Prep Time: 15 min

Cook Time: 40 min


1 large (3-pound) butternut squash
3 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 cup water
6 Tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup diced onion
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 cup arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh chives, plus more for garnish


Preheat the oven to 450ºF.

Halve the squash lengthwise and scoop out the seeds.

Lightly oil a shallow baking dish and place half of the squash, cut side down, in the baking dish. Peel the other half of the squash then dice it into 1/4-inch cubes. Add the diced squash to the baking dish, scattering the cubes around the sides of the halved squash.

Bake the squash, stirring the cubes occasionally, for 15 to 20 minutes.

Remove the squash from the oven. Transfer the cubed squash to a bowl, and holding the halved squash in a kitchen towel, scoop out the flesh and roughly chop it. Transfer the chopped squash to the bowl with the cubed squash.

Combine the chicken broth and water in a medium saucepot over medium-low heat. Bring it to barely a simmer.

Add the butter to a separate large saucepot over medium-low heat, then add the onion and garlic and sauté until soft, about 3 minutes.

Increase the heat to medium and stir in the rice. Add the wine and continue cooking, stirring until the wine is absorbed. Stir in 1/2 cup of the barely simmering chicken broth, and cook at a simmer, stirring constantly, until broth is all absorbed. Continue simmering and adding broth, about 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly and allowing each addition of broth to be absorbed before adding more until half the broth has been added.

Stir in all of the roasted squash and continue simmering and adding broth 1/2 cup at a time until the rice is tender and creamy but still al dente, about 18 minutes.

Stir in 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese and 2 tablespoons chives. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve the risotto, garnished with additional Parmesan and chives.

Recipe adapted from Epicurious.


26 Responses to “Roasted Butternut Squash Risotto”

  1. #
    Jenny @ BAKE — October 17, 2012 at 8:06 am

    I’ve been meaning to try this recipes forever! I’m going to have to put it on next weeks meal plan!

  2. #
    Ashley — October 17, 2012 at 8:26 am

    Just curious, is there anything non-alcoholic that you recommend that you can substitute for the wine? Was wondering if there was a good substitution for it. This sounds amazing. I want to try this now! :D

    • Kelly Senyei replied: — October 17th, 2012 @ 2:17 pm

      Hey Ashley! You could use non-alcoholic wine, or I’ve also read that white grape juice with a splash of white vinegar will work. Enjoy!

  3. #
    Sommer@ASpicyPerspective — October 17, 2012 at 9:46 am

    Sigh… I would like nothing more than to just melt into that baking dish. :)

  4. #
    Meagan @ A Zesty Bite — October 17, 2012 at 10:04 am

    This looks amazing! I agree that you can get quite the workout from making the risotto so in the end its worth every calorie.

  5. #
    Abby@ Totes Delish — October 17, 2012 at 10:13 am

    Perfect cold weather dish! Good thing I have a butternut squash waiting on the counter at home : )

  6. #
    Alison @ Ingredients, Inc. — October 17, 2012 at 10:18 am

    this looks unreal amazing! I miss you my friend!! off to share this

  7. #
    Jackie @ Domestic Fits — October 17, 2012 at 1:01 pm

    Risotto is on my Top Ten Foods list. But I’m always so surprised at how often restaurants make it wrong and dry risotto makes me sad. Love the butternut squash and sage combo, beautiful :)

  8. #
    Ashley — October 17, 2012 at 2:37 pm

    WOOHOO! Thanks!

  9. #
    Rachel Cooks — October 18, 2012 at 7:59 am

    I love the idea of roasting the squash in two ways to add texture. This looks so perfect!

  10. #
    elizabeth @ chronic venture — October 18, 2012 at 1:19 pm

    mmm yummy!! i never thought to roast the two different ways. risotto is one of my favorite things to eat and make–totally worth all that stirring!

  11. #
    Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes — October 18, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    LOVE risotto..this looks so good!

  12. #
    Jaime S. — October 21, 2012 at 11:52 am

    I made this and an adapted version of your roasted brussel sprouts w/pancetta and balsamic glaze last night for dinner—DELICIOUS. It was my first foray into Risotto so I ended up having to add a bit more liquid and cook it a little longer as my rice was too al dente. Came out beautifully and was a wonderful fall dish. Great recipe, Kelly!

  13. #
    JulieD — October 24, 2012 at 12:54 pm

    This looks gorgeous and easy to do!!!

  14. #
    marla — October 28, 2012 at 9:04 am

    Kelly, this risotto looks amazing, love the squash and all of that color!

  15. #
    Valarie - Sag Harbor — November 25, 2012 at 2:11 pm

    This is the best rissotto recipe I have found, by roasting the squash it really enhances the flavor. 4 Star!! Make sure to cook the rissotto on low so all the liquid is absorbed and let it absorb all the way before adding more. This makes the risotto creamy and not hard.

  16. #
    Ellen — April 30, 2013 at 6:27 am

    I just made this, and it is DELICIOUS! It’s coming into winter here in Australia and I think it will definitely become a staple. I’ve never cooked risotto before, but i’m so pleased how it turned out. Thanks for the recipe!! xo

  17. #
    Tina — September 4, 2013 at 8:51 am

    I found this on pinterest and finally made it! It is delicious! Definitely a keeper! The only comment I have is 6T of butter is not 3/4 cup. I used the 6T and it turned out perfect…

    • Kelly Senyei replied: — September 4th, 2013 @ 8:54 am

      Thanks so much for the heads up on this, Tina! I just fixed the ingredient listing and I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe!

  18. #
    Nichole — November 11, 2013 at 10:01 pm

    I have never made risotto before but I have to say, this is definitely one of the best recipes I have ever made in my entire life. I followed everything exactly and my boyfriend and I were totally surprised at how incredible it tasted. All I’d say is that it’s good to have a partner to share with the stirring. But, even if you don’t have someone to assist you in stirring, it’s totally worth the tired arm! Thanks for this delicious recipe!!

    • Kelly Senyei replied: — November 12th, 2013 @ 9:54 am

      Awesome! So glad you enjoyed the recipe, Nichole!


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