How to Make A Quick and Easy Meal for Vegetarians. Recipe for Vegetable Risotto.

peppers will add colour to your vegetable risotto meal

Photo: red,yellow and green peppers to be used in the vegetable risotto recipe here.
Photo: red,yellow and green peppers to be used in the vegetable risotto recipe here. | Source

An Easy Recipe for a Tasty for Vegetable Risotto, a meal suitable for vegetarians.

This risotto recipe is a suitable meal for vegetarians and all the family can enjoy this simple to prepare dish.

If you have a friend or one of the family is a vegetarian and you need to prepare a meal for them at short notice this recipe is quick,easy and useful.

When you have a family that includes meat eaters and vegetarians you get use to planning meals and juggling saucepans and menus. What can be difficult is putting together a meal for a surprise vegetarian guest or even a member of the family who is hoping you can conjure up a vegetarian meal out of the blue and at short notice.

This risotto recipe a useful "vegetarian recipe" in these circumstances as it is prepared from ingredients that you are likely to have in your store cupboard or pantry.

To Make Vegetable Risotto you will need -

1/ Risotto rice.

There are two types of risotto rice that are easily available in the supermarkets they are -

  • Risotto rice is usually available in Arborio and Carnaroli Rice.

Either will be good to use in this recipe - but you may have a preference for one type to the other.

  • You will need stock to add to the rice -

The stock can be made up from a stock cube you need to use a type of stock that is suitable for vegetarians.

  • A selection of suitable vegetables.

If the meal is to be made at short notice you will have to use whatever suitable vegetables are available to you at that time. Here is a list of the vegetables that I have used and found suitable.

  • Onions - almost certainly a good idea in this risotto unless you prefer the flavour of garlic.

Slice your onions small for risotto.

  • Peppers - Red,yellow or orange peppers - green can be used but are not my favorites.
  • Celery - cut up into small pieces. If you like celery.

You might like diced carrot in your risotto - not everyone does.

Mushrooms can be used but do not overcook them.

If you have no vegetables to make this risotto - If you do not have any of these vegetables in the house you can make a very pleasant risotto from peas (frozen peas are OK) adding them and mint later on in the cooking time than for other vegetables.

Saffron risotto - can be cooked with just the oil, rice,stock and - the saffron added at the last stage.

To begin to make this meal, collect together your ingredients and a heavy based frying pan for cooking the risotto and another frying pan to start cooking the vegetables in.

To Make Vegetable Risotto.

  • Cut up the vegetables and start to soften them over a low to medium heat - I use a splash of olive oil in the pan for this.

You are just going to soften up or saute the vegetables and you do not want to over cook or blacken them. Onions and peppers take about the same time.

  • Then put this pan to one side and take your heavy based frying-pan. You will have instructions on the risotto rice as to how much to use for the number of people you are cooking the meal for - five people is the most I have produced this for at one cooking.
  • OK - you know how much rice to use from the quantity suggested on the packet, you have your jug of stock ready and on stand by, nearby. The quantity of stock needed will vary according to the rice but the risotto rice packet will give you a guide for this. Some times the risotto rice will require more stock and other times maybe less.

The next bit is where the skill and concentration is required -

  • Heat a couple of table-spoon (about an an egg-cup) of olive oil in the pan - not too hot you do not want to roast your grains of rice.

When you add the rice to the oil, you are going to keep the heat low, you are going to move the rice around in the pan with a wooden spoon, making sure it does not brown.

  • Your rice will begin to look almost translucent - now add some of the stock,slowly, you are not trying to get the rice to float.

If you do this correctly - you will hear the rice - make a noise like sighing as it is absorbed - not sizzling or spluttering. If it does not make this noise, do not worry you will still make tasty risotto, I just aim for this as it is how I think it best.

The trick with risotto is to add the stock slowly in small quantities until is absorbed and then gently add more. It requires patience and cannot to be left. Good food does require a degree of loving care. This means you need to stand by the risotto rice as it cooks, adding stock and stirring it so that it does not burn or stick to the pan. Add the stock at the point when the rice has absorbed the previous stock you put in and before your risotto rice is 'catching' on the bottom of the pan.

Stir and add stock until - the rice is almost cooked and the stock liquid is almost used up, re-heat the vegetables and add them to the pan.

Now at the last stage some people say add butter to make it more creamy and to add a glisten to the rice, however others do not add butter. Some people let the risotto stand for a few moments to absorb all the flavours - usually my food is on plate and on the table and eaten too quickly to wait to find out if they are right.

Parmesan cheese is often served wit risotto but it is not suitable for vegetarians as it contains animal rennet, which comes from calves. There are products based on the Parmesan style cheese that are suitable for vegetarians and they are available in larger supermarkets.

I hope you enjoy making and eating this tasty and healthy vegetable risotto meal .

You can adapt this recipe easily to suit your own tastes - for example - you might like to use different flavoured oils.

Rice - the types of rice used for making Risotto.

Types of Rice for Risotto.

  • The word Risotto comes from the Italian word for rice, riso.

Arborio Rice when simmered and stirred while cooking, makes a risotto with creamy, evenly cooked grains.

Carnaroli rice has long grains and is said to be a good choice for simple risottos such as saffron.

Saffron Risotto is a simple dish to make and is also suitable for vegetarians. When making saffron risotto you add the saffron near to the end of the cooking time.

I test if risotto rice is ready to eat in the same way that I test pasta - put a piece into your mouth but before eating it 'nip/bite' the grain of rice between your teeth.

This is also how I test that pasta I cook is 'al dente' - which means firm to the tooth.

The texture of rice and pasta will be different when cooked, but my method of testing them uses the same technique, the pasta should not be too soft while the rice should not be too firm.


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Comments 14 comments

2uesday profile image

2uesday 5 years ago from - on the web, I am 2uesday. Author

Thanks StarCreate sorry I did not respond to your comment sooner.

Thank you carcro, it is a versatile recipe sometimes I make it with Quorn chunks added to it for a change. Saffron in the rice is a nice variation too.


carcro profile image

carcro 5 years ago from Winnipeg

This sounds really good, I'll bet its very tasty too. I have some vegetarians in my home, will definitely give this recipe a try, thanks for sharing. Voted Up and Interesting!


StarCreate profile image

StarCreate 5 years ago from Spain

Risotto is delicious, but we vegetarians do get offered it a lot! There are so many other delicious vegetarian main courses besides risotto and lasagne... But I agree for a store cupboard meal that tastes fresh and exciting it's hard to beat.


chechetka profile image

chechetka 5 years ago from London, UK

hmmm, looks like a great idea, I love risotto so will definitely try this one out:) thanks!


2uesday profile image

2uesday 6 years ago from - on the web, I am 2uesday. Author

How lovely to see your name here. I enjoy cooking risotto and this recipe is a useful stand-by for when my favourite vegetarian visits at short notice. Thanks itakins.


itakins profile image

itakins 6 years ago from Irl

Love risotto-yum.


2uesday profile image

2uesday 6 years ago from - on the web, I am 2uesday. Author

Thanks Nell, your way sounds more fun - but I would probably drop the plates then or something. Thanks.


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 6 years ago from England

Hi, I love risotto, and the brandy sounds like a great idea! (I would probably drink it first though!) cheers nell


2uesday profile image

2uesday 6 years ago from - on the web, I am 2uesday. Author

Thanks Jai - added link to your excellent risotto rice hub.

The 100 is a bit odd - my fault I got to 100 a while ago then removed some of the hubs I had published so it is saying this for a second time :) sorry.


2uesday profile image

2uesday 6 years ago from - on the web, I am 2uesday. Author

Thanks Jai - added link to your excellent risotto rice hub.

The 100 is a bit odd - my fault I got to 100 a while ago then removed some of the hubs I had published so it is saying this for a second time :) sorry.


Jai Warren profile image

Jai Warren 6 years ago from Dallas, Deep Ellum, Texas

The link would be wonderful, Thank you!

Oh, congrats on your 100th Hub. :)


2uesday profile image

2uesday 6 years ago from - on the web, I am 2uesday. Author

Thank you Jai I usually cook this for my son when he visits us. I will try the lemon idea, as I like to use lemon when cooking but have never used it in this way.

I will try to link this to your risotto recipe if that is OK.

Hi timorous - we like risotto and pasta dishes too. Maybe I need to emphasize the need to stir it fairly constantly as you cook it - it might not be obvious if someone is cooking it for the first time. I think it is a reasonably quick meal to prepare so do not mind standing by it stirring as it cooks, you are right it is worth it. If you do not keep stirring it; it is hard to judge when to add the stock and it can stick to the pan. I will update the recipe with that info. thanks too for the rosemary idea.


timorous profile image

timorous 6 years ago from Me to You

Ahhh..risotto, one of my favourites. I make risotto at least every couple of weeks. It does require some patience and takes about 25 minutes to make (and fairly constant stirring), but it's well worth it.

As with pasta, you'll know it's done when it's 'al dente'..slightly chewy but soft on the inside, and creamy. If it's not creamy you've gone too far and it's more like fried rice.

Thanks 2uesday.

P.S. I like to add a sprinkling of rosemary, stirred in at the end.


Jai Warren profile image

Jai Warren 6 years ago from Dallas, Deep Ellum, Texas

Thanks 2uesday, great recipe. This risotto would definitely be delicious for vegetarians and meat eaters alike. I enjoy the acidity wine adds to the dish. If not wine a little lemon juice or zest at the end brightens the flavor.

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