Parmesan Risotto is a creamy and velvety Italian dish that tastes gourmet yet is easy to make! Short grain rice is cooked with broth until tender and creamy and flavored with parmesan.

Serve this as a side dish or add in some veggies (like broccoli or asparagus) or shrimp to make it a complete meal.

Parmesan Risotto on a plate with parsley

An Easy Favorite

This is one of my favorite dishes to order at an Italian restaurant, especially if it has a drizzle of truffle oil.

What is risotto? It’s a creamy and delicious Italian dish made with short-grain rice. Stirring the rice while adding little bits of warm broth breaks down the starches making a creamy dish (without any cream!).

  • A restaurant worthy dish that can be made at home.
  • Risotto is easy to make (although it takes a bit of time).
  • You can flavor it with your favorite herbs or veggie additions.
  • This can be served as a side dish or double the portions for an entree.

A classic entree like roasted split chicken breast or juicy garlic grilled shrimp are perfectly paired with this dish!

ingredients to make Parmesan Risotto with labels

Ingredients for Risotto

Making true risotto is easy, but you definitely have to be able to give it some attention.

RICE: Risotto is made with starchy short-grain Italian rice (most often Arborio) and cooked on the stovetop. This rice is perfect for things like creamy rice pudding or cabbage roll casserole. While risotto can be made with other grains (like mushroom barley risotto) arborio is my favorite choice.

BROTH: The chicken stock or broth is used to add great flavor to the dish. Vegetable stock can be used in place.

While this rice is a creamy dish, it doesn’t contain dairy to give it this consistency (it does contain dairy in the cheese/butter of course).

Ingredients for Parmesan Risotto in a pot

How to Make Risotto

Heat stock in the microwave or a small saucepan that you can keep right near the rice while it cooks. It’s important to use hot or warm broth, never cold.

  1. Sauté the onions, then stir in rice and garlic and lightly brown the rice (per the recipe below).
  2. Add wine and let it cook down. Add hot stock or broth a bit at a time stirring and allowing it to be almost completely absorbed before adding more). Continue adding and stirring until the rice is tender and creamy.
  3. Stir in parmesan and the other seasonings last.

adding broth to rice to make Parmesan Risotto

Recipe Tip

Ensure the broth is warmed before adding it to the rice bit by bit. If the broth is cold it will make for uneven cooking as it hits the pan (and the risotto will take much longer to cook too).

More Tips for Making Risotto

This parmesan risotto recipe is easy to make.

  • Keep stock or broth warm on low heat on the stove.
  • Wine adds great flavor but can be substituted with additional broth if desired.
  • Add hot stock, a ladle at a time. Stir with a wooden spoon until liquid is completely absorbed into the rice before adding more.
  • When the broth is all added in, the rice should be creamy and cooked through. If not, more broth can be added.

Parmesan Risotto cooked in the pan

Variations and Additions

Add any of the following or serve along with risotto.


In terms of food safety, it’s perfectly fine to freeze Risotto, but it’s not optimal for maintaining flavor and texture. Arborio Rice is so starchy, that freezing it can make it grainy.

  • Store in an airtight container in the fridge. It should last for about 3-4 days.
  • Reheat: Pop in the microwave, being careful not to overcook. (Check it at 10-second intervals, once it’s hot, it’s ready.) Or, use the stovetop, stirring constantly, and adding a little hot broth or water to liven it up.

Enjoy this fabulous Italian cuisine either for parties or when you feel like making something really special the whole family will be sure to enjoy.

More Rice & Risotto

Did you love this Parmesan Risotto? Leave us a comment and a rating below! 

5 from 45 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Parmesan Risotto

An easy, creamy, and velvety Italian treat that tastes like a gourmet dish!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 28 minutes
Total Time 43 minutes
Servings 4 servings
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  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • cup onion chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • ½ cup white wine or extra broth
  • 3 cups chicken broth warmed
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • cup parmesan cheese freshly grated, plus extra for serving
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley


  • Warm the broth in the microwave or in a small saucepan.
  • Add olive oil and onions to a medium saucepan and cook over medium-high heat until tender, about 3-4 minutes. Stir in rice and garlic and cook until rice starts to lightly brown, about 5 minutes.
  • Add wine and cook, while stirring, until evaporated. Add warmed broth ½ cup at a time stirring until evaporated after each addition. This will take about 20 minutes.
  • Remove from heat, stir in parmesan cheese (reserve a couple of tablespoons for garnish), butter and parsley. Taste and season with salt & pepper as needed.


  • Keep stock or broth warm on low heat on the stove.
  • Wine adds great flavor but can be substituted with additional broth if desired.
  • Add hot stock, a ladle at a time. Stir with a wooden spoon until liquid is completely absorbed into the rice before adding more.
  • When the broth is all added in, the rice should be creamy and cooked through. If not, more broth can be added.
  • Optional add in 1/2 cup defrosted peas or asparagus at the end.
  • Risotto will thicken once cooled, add additional broth or water when reheating.
5 from 45 votes

Nutrition Information

Calories: 367 | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 26mg | Sodium: 965mg | Potassium: 235mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 389IU | Vitamin C: 15mg | Calcium: 216mg | Iron: 3mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Side Dish
Cuisine Italian
Parmesan Risotto in a bowl with a title
close up of plated Parmesan Risotto with writing
cooking Parmesan Risotto and plated with writing


adding broth to Parmesan Risotto with writing



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Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!
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Recipe Rating


  1. about to attempt this!! sounds and looks amazing!! 1 question
    can you add a little warm milk into the mix?

    1. Sure you can although we do find it doesn’t usually need it. If you do add it, I would suggest adding it towards the end of cooking. Let us know how it goes!

    1. Hi Philip, sorry this recipe didn’t turn out for you. We cook this over medium-high heat and we have reviewed the recipe to ensure the information is correct. Hope that helps!

  2. Absolutely delicious. Doubled the recipe to serve 7. Followed recipe exactly and it was tasty and tender. Not overpowering but creamy and tasty. Served aside lemon chicken.rsotto seems intimidating but this recipe is super simple. Bring your elbow grease!!5 stars

  3. Just getting started on this but should step 2 be add olive oil and onions to pot? Since the butter gets added later? Thanks!