Secrets To A Really Good Vegan Risotto
- Don’t be tempted to use long grain rice! Risotto rice is short grained and white. It is particularly starchy which is what gives risotto its lovely creaminess. It is available in several varieties, the most common being Arborio and Carnaroli both of which work well. If pushed I’d choose Carnaroli, it’s a bit kinder and doesn’t mind being left alone for a bit but there’s not much in it!
- The stirring is important when making risotto, you are encouraging it to be as creamy as possible BUT if you can’t be bothered, use less stock, stick a lid on it, stir it every now and again to stop it sticking. Cook it for 20 minutes. Take the lid off after 15 minutes and stir it vigorously for the last five, making sure all the liquid has been absorbed.
- Many traditional risottos rely on the heft of dairy cheese for both flavour and texture. Taste the risotto and add extra flavour if needed. I like a lot of pepper in mine and I bung in some Nutritional Yeast to give it a bit more oomph. For a creamier risotto a spoonful of coconut milk or cashew cream does the trick.
- Use my basic vegan mushroom risotto recipe and adapt it to suit whichever vegetables you have to hand. Try an onion instead of a leek, replace the mushrooms with carrots or peas, stir the spinach in instead of sitting the risotto on it.
How To Make Vegan Mushroom Risotto Even Better!
This recipe is for the most basic, super easy mushroom risotto. Once you’ve mastered it the world is your oyster! Add any of the following to enhance the flavour and texture:
- Vegan cheese or Nutritional Yeast
- Toasted cashew nuts, almonds or Brazil nuts
- Fresh or dried herbs like basil, parsley, dill, tarragon, thyme, sage or rosemary
- Ground spices like cinnamon, smoked paprika or nutmeg
- Cashew cream or coconut milk
- Top it with some roasted pumpkin or sweet potato
- Add some soaked and drained dried mushrooms when you are frying the fresh ones. Use the soaking liquid as stock, it is packed with mushroom flavour!
Maybe pop on a chef’s hat, some cooking music and really go to town! Add ingredients in small quantities and check for flavour so you don’t overdo it and go all Swedish Chef though!
Looking For More Super Simple Vegan Food? Try My:
- Baked Pumpkin Risotto with Crispy Fried Sage
- Simple Pumpkin Curry
- Vegan Roast Potato Curry
- Vegan Omelette
- Easy Vegan Fried Rice
- Easy Vegan Chilli with Baked Potatoes
- Vegan Mushroom Stroganoff with Mustard Mash
- Baked Pumpkin Risotto
Easy Vegan Mushroom Risotto
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium leek
- 100 g chestnut mushrooms
- 2 cloves garlic
- 100 g risotto rice
- 2 vegetable stock cubes
- 50 ml of vegan white wine (optional)
- 600 ml boiling water (650ml if you are not adding the white wine - about 2.5 cups of liquid altogether)
- 1 tsp dried mixed herbs
- salt and pepper
To Finish (optional)
- Grated vegan hard cheese
- A little bit of parsley
- Fresh baby spinach leaves
- Trim the leek, removing the very bottom of the root end and any green leaves at the top. Wash thoroughly.
- Slice in half lengthways and then again into quarters, then chop finely.
- Chop the mushrooms finely.
- Peel and chop the garlic very finely.
- Add the vegetable stock cubes to the boiling water and stir to dissolve.
- Heat the olive oil very gently in a large frying pan.
- Add the leek and mushrooms and cook gently until soft and the mushrooms release their juices (about 5 minutes)
- Add the garlic and cook gently for another minute.
- Add the rice and stir.
- Increase the heat and add enough water to barely cover the rice, stir frequently until most of the stock has been absorbed.
- Add the wine, if using, and a good glug of stock, stir frequently again until this stock has been absorbed.
- Keep adding stock gradually like this and stirring until all the stock has been used and the rice is creamy. About 20 minutes.
- Remove from the heat.
- Stir in the dried mixed herbs, some salt and pepper to taste and leave to stand for 5 minutes.
- Serve on a bed of washed baby spinach leaves, sprinkled with a little bit of parsley (not strictly necessary but it looks cheffy) and some grated vegan cheese.