Mushroom, Spinach and Cheese Risotto

Mushroom, Spinach and Cheese Risotto molded on a plate
Photo: Heriberto Cruz Guzmán, RDN, LND, LD

Risotto is a versatile and creamy Italian dish. It consists of short grain rice cooked with broth or stock. Unlike most rice recipes, risotto requires constant stirring. Personally, I don’t eat much rice, which is considered odd on my island of Puerto Rico, but I do enjoy risotto and its many variations. Its versatility stems from countless risotto dishes that can be obtained through the combination of different broths or stocks with a wide range of ingredients. For example, a risotto made with beef stock and asparagus will undoubtedly deliver a different taste than another prepared with seafood stock and shrimp.

Risotto is a great way to incorporate vegetables into your diet even if you are not a fan of their taste as their flavor often gets muted in the dish.  Also, it works as a side or main dish and goes well with any of your favorite protein sources.

You don’t have to visit a fancy restaurant to get what might be considered a rare and costly dish. For this recipe, contrary to popular opinion, expert cooking skills are not required. It’s an easy process that will have your friends and family members admiring your culinary prowess. As the Italians say, “Buon appetito.”


Mushroom, Spinach & Cheese Risotto

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 chopped clove of garlic
  • 12 ounces risotto rice (short grain rice)
  • ¼ cup white wine
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • ¾ cup chopped spinach
  • 4 to 6 sliced champignon mushrooms
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Salt and pepper

Directions

  1. In a deep pan, sauté onion with olive oil. Cook until almost translucent and add garlic. Once onion is completely translucent, add rice. Stir ingredients together and cook for about one minute.
  2. Add wine and keep stirring until you can no longer smell the alcohol, about one minute.
  3. Add chicken broth until rice is completely submerged. Place pan on medium heat and cover with lid.
  4. Every 2 to 4 minutes take off lid, stir and continue adding broth as rice absorbs it.
  5. After about 20 to 25 minutes, rice should be cooked. Taste it and cook longer, if necessary, to desired texture.
  6. Add spinach, mushrooms and cheese. Stir all ingredients until mushrooms are softened.
  7. Add salt and pepper to your liking. Enjoy!

Note: Risotto might taste even better as a leftover and can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for a maximum of two days.

​Heriberto Cruz Guzmán on Linkedin
​Heriberto Cruz Guzmán
Born in San Juan, Puerto Rico, Heriberto Cruz Guzmán, RDN, LND, LD, received his Bachelor’s degree in Nutrition and Dietetics from the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus, and completed his dietetic internship at the University of Puerto Rico, Medical Science Campus. He also has a master’s degree in Human Nutrition from the Autonomous University of Barcelona. Connect with him on LinkedIn.