This creamy brown rice risotto is oven-baked for maximum simplicity! Full of flavour thanks to the addition of sundried tomatoes, mushrooms, parmesan and pinenuts.
Who know that brown rice could make such a good risotto?! It gives a lovely nutty taste, with the only downside being that it takes quite a bit longer to cook.
Cream cheese adds flavour and creaminess, and means you don’t have to load up the risotto with butter. If you’re not vegetarian and wondered about adding a cheeky bit of steak to this meal, I would thoroughly support you in that!
I know this meal doesn’t quite meet my weeknight recipe promise of “ready in 60 minutes or less”, but you’ll have so much free time while it’s cooking that I thought that might make it ok! What do you think? If you don’t mind the extra few minutes, I might add a lasagne recipe to one of the upcoming menus.
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This creamy brown rice risotto is oven-baked for maximum simplicity! Full of flavour thanks to the addition of sundried tomatoes, mushrooms, parmesan and pinenuts. A nutritious and delicious vegetarian meal.
Preheat oven to 200ºC (375ºF) fan bake. Finely dice celery and onion and crush garlic.
Melt butter in large pot over medium-heat. Add celery, onion and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender (about 5 minutes). Pour in stock, increase heat to high and bring to the boil.
Meanwhile, rinse rice under cold water and add to a large casserole dish (ideally one that has a lid). Pour in the stock and vegetable mixture, place the lid on (or cover tightly with foil) and bake for 50 minutes.
COOK PINENUTS AND MUSHROOMS
When risotto has cooked for 35 minutes, wipe mushrooms clean and thickly slice. Crush garlic. Heat a large frying pan on medium-high, add pinenuts and lightly toast. Remove from pan and set aside.
Melt butter in pan and add mushrooms, garlic and thyme. Pan fry for 5-10 minutes, until browned and tender. Reduce heat to very low to keep warm.
Remove risotto from oven. Check stock is absorbed and rice is tender. If not, cook for a further 10 minutes (add more stock or water if needed). Add cream cheese, wine (if using), soy sauce and two thirds of the parmesan. Beat in using a wooden spoon, until well blended and creamy. Stir in sundried tomatoes and spinach. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Spoon portions of risotto into warmed serving bowls. Top with mushrooms, remaining parmesan and pinenuts. Sprinkle with thyme, if using.
WINE MATCH: Pinot Noir or Chardonnay.
GLUTEN-FREE OPTION: Use gluten-free stock and gluten-free soy sauce.
INGREDIENT SWAPS / NOTES: If you don’t want to use brown rice, you can use arborio rice instead - cooking time for the risotto will be reduced to around 30 minutes (check at 25 minutes). For lovers of meat, this risotto would be perfect served with a nice steak!
STORING AND REHEATING: Store individual portions in airtight containers in the fridge. Reheat in the microwave (the risotto should stay nice and creamy!).