I thought I wasn't ever going to be brave enough to make risotto, let alone a vegan mushroom and asparagus risotto...it can be pretty intimidating. The risotto was the first to master on my list and it was NOT that difficult to make! Once you become familiar with some key tips, it's easy to make.
Generally, risotto is cooked in chicken stock when we go out to eat. Risottos also use butter and parmesan cheese for creaminess. But some of us vegetarians and vegans need options...am I right?!! So here comes this vegan risotto right here to save the day! The key to the creaminess of risotto is cooking the rice properly as you will see in the tips below.
Ingredients for a Vegan Risotto:
- Arborio Rice. This is a key ingredient in risotto.
- Asparagus. Blanched to keep nutrients but get the texture.
- Mushrooms. For those that are afraid of mushrooms...I used shiitake and chopped them up really small. Even the mushroom haters will love it!
- Vegetable broth.
- Garlic and onions.
- Salt and pepper.
Tips to make Mushroom and Asparagus Risotto
- Blanch the asparagus. This process is to preserve the flavor and color of asparagus but cook it to the perfect texture. To do this, bring water to a boil and boil for about two minutes. Then drain the asparagus and let it cool in an ice bath to stop the cooking process.
- Warm the broth. This helps the risotto cook slightly faster and gives the risotto a creaminess.
- Saute the rest of the vegetables first. I used onions, garlic, and mushrooms. Cook the mushrooms until they are fully browned and tender.
- Add arborio rice and toast it. Add the warmed broth ½ cup at a time and stir until almost fully absorbed. This step here is what really makes the risotto and gives it the perfect creamy texture (and why I used to be so intimidated to make it)! This process takes about 20 minutes as you wait for each ½ cup of liquid to be absorbed. Add in the blanched asparagus at the last ½ cup. If you want yours to be slightly runnier, feel free to add in a little more broth!
- Season with black pepper and salt and serve immediately. You can also add some vegan parmesan cheese to give it more flavor!
This vegan risotto is so creamy and comforting. Finish off with some delicious strawberry crisp, vegan ice cream, and a movie and I'd call it the perfect evening!
If you loved this Vegan Mushroom and Asparagus Risotto, let me know in the comments below! I’d love to connect with you on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest! Subscribe to my weekly emails so you never miss a new recipe!
Mushroom and Asparagus Risotto
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 cups asparagus; chopped
- 1 medium onion; chopped
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 cup mushrooms; chopped
- 1 cup arborio rice
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- ½ teaspoon sea salt, plus more to taste
- Black pepper to taste
- Blanch the asparagus by bringing a medium pot of water to a boil. Add the chopped asparagus and boil for about two minutes. Drain asparagus and let cool in an ice bath.
- In the same pot you used for the asparagus, warm the broth on the stove and keep on low heat to remain warm. This helps the risotto cook slightly faster.
- In a medium size pan, heat the oil on medium-high heat and sauté the onions and garlic for 2-3 minutes. Add the mushrooms and saute until tender and browned.
- Add arborio rice and toast for about 1-2 minutes.
- Add warmed broth ½ cup at a time, stirring until almost absorbed. This process takes about 20 minutes as you wait for each ½ cup of liquid to be absorbed. At the last ½ cup of liquid, stir in the blanched asparagus.
- Taste your rice to make sure it's well cooked. The rice should be al dente and risotto consistency should be creamy. If you'd like your risotto to be more runny, add an extra ½ cup of warmed broth at a time until you reach your desired texture.
- Season with generously with black pepper and salt and serve immediately. Optional garnishes include vegan parmesan rosemary, parsley, or basil!
- I highly recommend using a nonstick pan for this recipe!
- Feel free to add more vegetables! I initially started with ½ cup arborio rice then decided to make more so I'd probably add more vegetables next time I make it.