Recipe Home > Side Dishes > ACORN SQUASH RISOTTO



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Instead of the traditional arborio rice, I use a mixture of short grain brown rice, pearl barley, and spelt berries. I’ve been told whole grains cancel out the heavy cream. Ha! If only.

• Interchange chicken stock for vegetable stock for a vegetarian dish.

• To reheat, place risotto in pan with stock, cooking on medium-low heat. Allow risotto to warm first before stirring, otherwise you’ll break your rice and end up with mush.

• If your rice is still crunchy after adding all the stock, add a bit more and continue to cook.


1/2 c. acorn squash, roasted

2 tbsp. salted butter

1 c. sweet onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, finely minced

1 c. arborio rice*

1/4 tsp. thyme

1/4 tsp. sage

dash of cloves

dash of nutmeg

1 bay leaf

3 c. chicken stock

salt and pepper, to taste

1/4 c. parmesan cheese, grated

3 tbsp. heavy cream


  1. Roast acorn squash. Place in a 350° oven. Bake for about 20 minutes or until you are able to cut squash in half. Place the two halves on a baking sheet, skin side down sprinkled with a bit of olive oil. Bake for another 20 minutes or until squash is soft. Allow to cool. Remove squash from outer peel. Mash and set aside. (This can be done up to a week in advance.)

  2. In a saucepan, melt butter on medium-high heat. Saute onions and garlic until translucent.

  3. Add rice to pan, coating with butter mixture. Add acorn squash and spices. Stir.

  4. Cook over medium heat, adding one cup of chicken stock at a time until liquid is absorbed. Stir often. Add salt and pepper to taste.

  5. Before serving, remove bay leaf and stir in cheese and cream. Garnish with a sprig of fresh sage, a sprinkle of parmesan, and a dash of nutmeg.


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