Corn and Red Pepper Risotto — Creamy risotto with sweet corn, tangy roasted red bell pepper, and Parmesan cheese – it’s a naturally gluten-free vegetarian dish made in heaven.
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I feel like risotto has kind of disappeared from the culinary scene lately.
Like, it used to be everywhere. Was its heyday maybe 10 years ago? They served it at fancy restaurants. There were recipes in all the magazines. And, now, I rarely see it. Well, I say, it’s time to bring it back!
And, although risotto takes a bit of time to cook, it isn’t hard at all. It’s pretty easy to make, actually. Just a bunch of stirring.
It’s so good. Creamy and delicious. A perfect vegetarian meal.
And, it’s healthy too. As most of the creaminess comes from the natural starch of the rice, and not from fats and fillers.
Risotto’s another great dish that can be served as a vegetarian main dish or a side dish at any meal.
Arborio rice is a short grain rice with plump, pearl-like white grains that absorb lots of liquid while they cook. They slowly release their starch into the dish, resulting in a warm, creamy thick dish that you’ll love.
What do I do with Leftovers?
This recipe makes a nice big batch of risotto. Which, depending on how many people you’re serving, may result in leftovers.
Now, you can make a smaller batch. Simply use the servings slider on the recipe card to easily adjust the ingredient amounts.
Or, if you’re like me, you love having leftovers. I mean, dinner’s all ready and waiting for you in the fridge! Simply cook up some meatless meatballs to serve with it one night. Or some chicken (I like those fake chicken tenders) the next night.
Keep any leftovers in the fridge in a tightly covered container for up to 5 days. As it sits, the risotto will thicken because of the starch in the rice.
I typically reheat the risotto in the microwave. You can also reheat it on the stove. If the risotto is too thick, add a splash of broth or water to the pan, as needed, to loosen it up.
Avoid freezing risotto. Cooked rice can become hard when frozen, and the texture can become grainy.
This makes a large amount of risotto, use the servings slider on the recipe card to easily adjust the ingredient amounts. It’s easily cut in half for less risotto.
Once chopped, the 12 ounces of red bell peppers make about 1 cup.
If you wanted to roast your own peppers you could. Just follow these instructions on how to roast a pepper. It was about 1 ½ peppers. Of course, you can always add a little more or a little less red pepper to the risotto.
1 ½ cups of corn is about 2 ears of corn worth. In the summer, when ears of corn are on sale for super cheap, like 5 ears for $1, I like to buy extras. You can grill those up, cut the corn off of them, and use them in this recipe. Like I said, about 2 ears worth, and a little more or a little less corn will be just fine in this risotto.
Use your broth of choice for this recipe. I’m a big believer in using the flavors that already taste good to you and your family.
For the most part, any broth is exchangeable in any recipe. If you really love your homemade chicken broth, by all means, use that. This is my favorite homemade vegetable broth, and it works great in this risotto.
I also love this store-bought broth: Better than Bouillon Base.
The saltiness if the broth should make it so you don’t need to add any additional salt to the risotto, but as always, taste and add salt to make yourself happy.
If you don’t cook with wine, simply replace the 1 cup of wine with 1 cup of broth. The risotto will still taste great.
When I was a kid my mom would replace all the wine in a recipe with 7-up. Now, I’m not sure I’d recommend that at this point in my life. Seems like it may be too sweet. But I did love it as a kid. Heck, if you try it, let me know how you like it in this recipe.
Kitchen tools you may need for this recipe
Spoon with a comfortable handle (you’ll be stirring a lot)
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Corn and Red Pepper Risotto Recipe
Corn and Red Pepper Risotto
- 2 quarts vegetable broth
- ¼ cup unsalted butter
- 1 onion chopped
- 1 pound Arborio rice 16 ounces
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 12 ounce jar roasted red bell peppers drained and chopped
- 1 ½ cups frozen corn defrosted
- ¾ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese plus additional for garnishing if desired
- freshly ground black pepper
- Place the broth in a sauce pot, and bring to a simmer.
- Heat butter over medium heat in a large sauté pan. Add onion, and cook until translucent. Add rice and stir until rice looks glossy. Add white wine, bring to a simmer, and add about ¾ cup hot broth. Cook, stirring, until the rice absorbs broth. Repeat until the rice is tender and creamy. Remove from heat. Stir in the chopped red peppers, corn, and grated Parmesan. Stir vigorously about 4 minutes.
- Serve hot, garnished with additional grated Parmesan and freshly ground black pepper.
Makes 10-6 servings depending on how you serve it (side dish or main dish)