The bright, fresh flavors of asparagus permeate this creamy risotto. Made in the instant pot, asparagus risotto is such a simple main dish!
This is a perfect meatless main dish or just as wonderful topped with grilled shrimp or scallops. For the perfect dinner party, try pairing with Easy Antipasto Kabobs and Orzo Arugula Salad with Lemon Basil Vinaigrette.
The Easiest Way to Make Asparagus Risotto
Doesn’t risotto just sound upscale and fancy? And daunting to make. Never fear, I have a recipe that will make you look all kinds of chef-like!
What is risotto? It is a Northern Italian rice dish that is cooked with broth until it is creamy. Today’s asparagus risotto is made with: rice, broth, seasonings, butter, asparagus and cheese.
The typical rice to use is arborio rice, which is not a normal rice to have around the house, but is essential for any risotto recipe. Basically short rice is important to use because it has a higher starch content and will form a stickier and more compact risotto.
How to Make Asparagus Risotto
BROTH. Warm chicken broth in a small saucepan set over low heat. Let broth warm while preparing remaining ingredients
RICE. Turn Instant Pot on SAUTE. When hot, melt 2 tablespoons butter. Add the shallot and cook for about 2 minutes (stirring frequently). Add garlic and cook until fragrant. Stir in rice, salt, and pepper. Cook for 1 minute, stirring frequently.
PRESSURE COOK. Pour in warm broth, stir, then close lid. Turn Instant Pot on MANUAL mode with high pressure selected for 6 minutes. Once cooked, allow for the pressure to release manually by switching the valve to venting (this usually takes 5 minutes).
ASPARAGUS. Meanwhile, add olive oil to a skillet on medium heat. Once hot, add the asparagus and cook for 8-10 minutes or until soft.
COMBINE. Remove the instant pot lid and stir in the remaining butter and the Parmesan. Let rest for 5 minutes before garnishing with asparagus and additional Parmesan.
What kind of cheese is best? We like to use parmesan for a more traditional creamy risotto. In reality you can use any cheese that melts well. Some people like to use gruyere or even a sharp cheddar.
How to Change Up? Here are a few ideas…
- Mushroom Asparagus Risotto: Cook the mushrooms with the asparagus and add at the end.
- Lemon Asparagus Risotto: Incorporate lemon juice when you mix in the last batch of stock.
- Add a Protein: Shrimp is a great addition to risotto, as well as crispy pan fried or grilled chicken. Sausage or scallops are also good options.
Side Ideas + How to Store
What to serve with Risotto? Here are some of our favorites:
- Garlic Parmesan Artisan Bread
- Roasted Spring Vegetables
- Instant Pot Pork Tenderloin
- Maple Dijon Roasted Chicken and Vegetables
Make ahead? If you want to make this ahead of time you should only keep it on the stove top for about an hour, if you are going to wait for more than an hour then you need to refrigerate it and rewarm it on the stove right before serving.
STORE risotto in the fridge and warm it up in the microwave after adding a little bit of butter and water. Do not freeze risotto because it ruins the excellent texture that you worked so hard for!
How long does it last? One average risotto lasts for about 5 days, if it has protein in it, such as meat, it will only last about 3 days. Make sure to store it in an airtight container.
For more recipes, check out:
Asparagus Risotto Recipe
- 2 c +1 tbsp low sodium chicken broth
- 1/4 c (1/2 stick) unsalted butter - divided
- 1 shallot - minced
- 1 c arborio rice
- 3/4 tsp kosher sea salt - more to taste
- 1/4 tsp ground black pepper or white pepper
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 lb fresh asparagus cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces - be sure to remove woody ends first
- 1/2 c Parmesan cheese - freshly grated
- In a small saucepan set over low heat, add chicken broth. Let broth warm while preparing remaining ingredients.
- Turn Instant Pot on SAUTE. When hot, add 2 tablespoons butter. Once the butter has melted add the shallot and cook for about 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add garlic and cook until fragrant
- Stir in rice, salt, and pepper. Cook for 1 minute, stirring frequently.Pour in warm broth, stir then close lid
- Turn Instant Pot on MANUAL mode with high pressure selected for 6 minutes. Once cooked, allow for the pressure to release manually by switching the valve to venting, this usually takes 5 minutes
- Meanwhile, in a skillet set over medium heat, add the olive oil. Once hot, add the asparagus and cook for 8-10 minutes or until soft
- Remove the lid and stir in the remaining butter and the Parmesan. Let rest for 5 minutes, stir and serve
- Garnish with asparagus and additional Parmesan.