Risotto Pesto

A combination of two classics...



Prep time

30 minutes

Cook time

30 minutes

Both risotto and pesto are Italian classics. This easy recipe takes you through both and provides a great alternative to pasta.


For the pesto:
30g basil 
20g spinach
50g pine nuts
1 garlic clove
3 tbsps capers
3 tbsps olive oil
1 lemon, juice and zest
salt and pepper, to taste 
For the risotto:


arborio rice
1 brown onion diced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1.5l stock
200g parmesan, grated
3 stalks of rosemary
2 tbsps olive or vegetable oil
salt, to taste 


  1. Begin with the pesto. First, dry fry the pine nuts for 1 minute. Set half to one side to garnish at the end.
  2. Next, combine all the pesto ingredients in a blender and blend to a smooth consistency. Place to one side.
  3. For the risotto, first, dry fry the the rice on a low heat for 1 minute, do not allow to toast. Then, place into a large bowl to one side
  4. Next, add oil to the pan, add the onions with a pinch of salt and fry over medium heat.
  5. Add the garlic and fry until the onions and garlic are soft.
  6. Re-add the rice and cover with stock. Raise heat to a simmer. Add the rosemary.
  7. Stir regularly as the rice cooks, incrementally adding more stock to ensure that the dish stays sufficiently hydrated to cook the rice and so it doesn’t stick to the pan.
  8. When the rice is close to being fully cooked, it will release starch into the mix and this will begin to bind the dish into a porridge-like consistency. Cook for a further 2-3 minutes to remove any excess liquid.
  9. Remove the rosemary stalks.
  10. Now, add the parmesan and mix until melted.
  11. Remove from heat, add the pesto on top of the risotto and sprinkle with the remaining pine nuts.

Chef’s tips

Remember to test your rice before serving to ensure that there is no chalky uncooked texture remaining.


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