Creamy Mushroom Spinach Risotto

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Have you ever had one of those dishes that just tastes rich and creamy but doesn’t have a drop of cream or dairy in it? Risotto is just one of those dishes. Risotto is a rice dish that is made with a short grain rice that has a lot of starch in it.

You stir constantly while cooking instead of leaving it alone to prevent it from sticking and burning to the bottom of the pan. In the process, the starch in the rice breaks down and mixes with the liquid while it cooks. The result is a soft and creamy rice dish with tons of flavor.

I’ll warn you that it takes some arm effort to make. You add the broth slowly in batches and you stir constantly as it cooks. If you don’t stir, you’ll find that the rice starts sticking to the bottom of the pan and you end up with a chunky blob that you have to scrape off. LOL, not the creamy delish concoction that you intended.

It sounds more complicated than it really is. Once you’re putting the stirring into action, it’s quite simple and the result is well worth it. Risotto is typically made with arborio rice which can be hard to find in some places. At least here when you do find it, it’s sold in lifetime supply sized bags. You can sub in plain old sushi rice for a much smaller quantity and price tag.

Creamy Mushroom Spinach Risotto Creamy Mushroom Spinach Risotto

  • 3 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 8 oz white mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/2 cup (50g) yellow onion, diced
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 cup (180g) uncooked short grain rice (Arborio or sushi)
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 3 cups (85g) raw spinach

Heat the broth and water in a large bowl or pot. You don’t have to boil it but you want it hot because you’re going to add it to the rice as it cooks. If it’s cold, it will cool off the rice each time and drag out the cooking time. I microwaved mine for about 4 minutes until it was pretty hot.

Heat a large pot over medium heat and add the olive oil. Swirl the pan to coat and add the sliced mushrooms. Cook the mushrooms until softened for about 5 minutes.  Remove from the heat and dump them into a bowl. I just put them into a bowl that I was going to use for dinner.

Return the pot to the heat and add the onions and garlic. Cook for about a minute and add the raw rice. Stir constantly for another minute to toast the rice just a little. Pour in the wine and cook, stirring, until the liquid is almost absorbed.

Stir in 1 cup of the hot broth mixture and stir stir stir until the rice absorbs most of the liquid. Add the remaining broth, 1/2 cup or so at a time, stirring until the liquid absorbs each time. Once the last of the broth is mixed in and the rice is creamy, remove it from the heat. Stir in the mushrooms and spinach. Mix the veggies in until the spinach wilts.

Divide evenly into bowls and top with cheese, if desired.

Makes 4 servings at approximately 235 calories – 9g protein, 43g carbs, and 3g fat.

I mixed in grilled chicken for some added protein and still only topped out at 345 calories for dinner. Can’t beat that! The leftovers save and reheat well. The rice doesn’t lose its creaminess and you get the added bonus of lunch the next day.

If you prefer a vegetarian or vegan version, you can easily use veggie broth in place of the chicken broth. Mix in kale instead of spinach or use different types of mushrooms. You could also use sundried tomatoes for another great variation. Make this your own and have fun with it.

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