Pumpkin Risotto is touched with sweetness, studded with chicken cashews, dried cranberries, and topped with cheese – sure to be your signature dish for Fall.
I first discovered this dish at Amrheins Restaurant in South Boston, where it is a seasonal favorite. Their version is served in a hallowed out sugar pumpkin. Yum!
This is a re-creation that is easy to make and packed full of flavors to comfort you in the Fall breeze. This is Fall comfort food at its best! Full of creaminess and a pretty cool spin on the traditional risotto.
The vegetable stock is first infused with pumpkin puree. This is what is used to cook the arborio rice and gives it that nice bright orange color and deliciousness.
Canned pumpkin puree is pretty darn bland, but the richness of the Parmesan pairs fantastically with the cranberries and cinnamon that sweeten up the dish and add a bit of tang.
I love standing over the warm stove while the weather is crisp outside too! This risotto looks so ideal for Thanksgiving. What a beautiful dish!
- Arborio Rice
- Pumpkin Puree – Flavors infuse into vegetable stock to provide a base for the rice to absorb the Fall flavors. Make sure you use pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie filling.
- Vegetable Stock – Keeps this dish vegan.
- Shallots – Milder than onions, melts beautifully into the risotto
- Cinnamon and Nutmeg – a touch of seasonal spices gives the aroma of pumpkin pie
- Chicken – poached or roasted chicken for added protein
- I’ve added protein to this – but the dish can easily be made vegan by omitting the chicken
- Spinach is also a nice addition. Just sauté the spinach in a separate pan in olive oil, and stir into the finished risotto at the end.
- I didn’t use white wine to deglaze the pan to keep this kid-friendly, but you can easily do so after toasting the arborio rice.
- Cheeses – Parmesan, Guyere, Gorgonzola, oh my! Pretty much any cheese that has a greater than mild taste pairs well with this pumpkin risotto!
Pumpkin Chicken Risotto
- Total Time: 40 minutes
- Yield: 4 servings 1x
Creamy Pumpkin chicken risotto infused with a pumpkin broth, cashews, dried cranberries, caramelized onions, and baby spinach
- 1 chicken breast, cooked and diced into 1 inch chunks
- 1 cup Pumpkin puree
- 4 cups of vegetable stock, low-sodium
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- 2 tablespoons of butter
- 1 shallot, minced
- 1 cup arborio rice
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
- salt and pepper to season
- 1/2 cup cranberries, divided
- roasted cashews, garnish
- thyme, season to taste (garnish)
- Pre-cook the chicken and dice into 1 inch chunks. Set aside. Recommended method to poach or roast.
Making the Risotto
- Heat stock and pumpkin purée in small saucepan; maintain gentle simmer while risotto is being prepared (entire amount of liquid may not be used).
- In a large saucepan, heat olive oil and butter over medium-high heat. Once butter has melted and slightly bubbling, add shallots and cook for 5 minutes until caramelized. Add arborio rice and cook for another 2-3 minutes until rice is slightly toasted.
- Add 1 cup simmering liquid; stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until almost all liquid is absorbed, about 5 minutes.
- Continue adding liquid, 1 cup at a time, stirring constantly until absorbed. Add final cup of liquid a little at a time, adding only as much as can be absorbed, until rice is cooked al dente (rice will have a slight bite) and mixture is creamy, about 25 minutes.
- Remove pan from heat. Stir in chicken, parmesan cheese and half of the cranberries. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Serve immediately. Garnish with reserved cranberries, cashews, and thyme.
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 35 minutes
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: Pumpkin Risotto, Pumpkin, Fall
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