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Zucchini Tomato Risotto has tender, creamy arborio rice, shredded garden zucchini, mushrooms, shallots, and two kinds of tomatoes – all cooked in a rich and flavorful broth.
Delicious flavors of summer
Our Zucchini Tomato Risotto is delicious summertime in a bowl. Garden zucchini, tomatoes, mushrooms, and fresh basil all come together in a creamy, satisfying risotto.
Why You’ll Love Zucchini Tomato Risotto
- It’s deliciously filling and full of deep, rich flavors.
- It’s another great way to use up garden zucchini and tomatoes.
- This recipe makes a big pot of risotto – about eight servings – so it’s perfect for feeding a crowd, or enjoy leftovers at another meal.
- The entire recipe is made in one pot – so cleanup is easy!
Key Ingredients & Substitutions
- Rice – Every risotto recipe starts with arborio rice. It’s a plump, short-grain white rice that is very starchy, and that starch is what gives risotto a distinctive, creamy consistency once it is cooked.
- Zucchini – You’ll need about a pound and a half of fresh zucchini – and if they are small and still tender, you don’t need to seed them before shredding. If your zucchini are larger, you should remove the seeds.
- Diced Tomatoes – We used canned diced tomatoes in our recipe today, but you can use the same amount of fresh tomatoes if you prefer.
- Sun-Dried Tomatoes – Buy the jarred sun-dried tomatoes that come packed in oil. They add a delicious, rich tomato flavor to this risotto that can’t be replicated by the sun-dried tomatoes that are sold in dry containers.
- Shallots – We chose shallots for this recipe because their mild onion flavor doesn’t overpower the other vegetables in this dish. You can, however, use any other variety of onion – but the oniony flavor will be more noticeable.
- Mushrooms – We used cremini (also known as baby Bella) mushrooms, but any variety can be used.
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Fresh Garlic
- Fresh Herbs – For that true summertime flavor, choose fresh basil and Italian flat-leaf parsley.
- Seasonings – Kosher salt and black pepper, dry oregano, plus a pinch of red pepper flakes
- Wine – White wine is used to deglaze. You can use stock if you prefer, but the wine does add some nice flavor.
- Stock –We used vegetable broth, but you can substitute chicken stock if that’s what you have on hand.
- Cheese – Freshly grated Parmesan cheese adds a nice salty finish to the risotto. You’ll stir it in at the end of the cooking process, and you can serve more on top of each serving.
Special Supplies Needed
- Box grater
- Medium to large Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot (ideally one that holds the heat)
- Cutting board and sharp knife
- Cheese grater
How do I make Zucchini Tomato Risotto?
- Sauté mushrooms, then add in the shallots, then rice, cooking for a few minutes after each addition.
- Add garlic and seasonings, then sun dried tomatoes – again cooking after each new ingredient is added.
- Deglaze the pot with white wine.
- Add tomatoes (including their juices) and zucchini. Stir and cook until the rice starts to absorb any liquid.
- Add vegetable stock a half cup at a time, simmering on low until the rice is tender.
- Stir in Parmesan, fresh basil and fresh parsley.
- Serve immediately with more Parmesan on top.
As with all risotto recipes, the stock should be slowly added over the course of the cooking process – not all at once. Allow each portion of stock to absorb into the rice before adding more.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Can I make Italian Zucchini and Tomato Risotto ahead of time? You can, but we think risotto is always best served when it is freshly-made.
- How do I store leftovers? Store in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to three days.
- How do I reheat leftovers? Reheat with a little extra stock or water. You can warm the risotto either in the microwave or in a sauce pan.
- Can I freeze? We don’t recommend freezing this dish. The rice will get soggy.
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4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
4 ounces cremini mushrooms, diced
1 cup shallots, sliced in half circles
1 1/3 cups Arborio rice
1 tablespoon fresh garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dry oregano
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Pinch red pepper flakes
1/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, drained and chopped
1/4 cup white wine
1 1/2 pounds zucchini, shredded on large holes of a box grater.
1 15.5-ounce can diced tomatoes with juice
4 cups vegetable stock (1 quart), heated
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped (Do not chop ahead or the leaves will darken. Chop at the last minute)
1/4 cup fresh Italian flat leaf parsley, chopped
2 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- In a medium to large Dutch oven or heavy bottomed pot, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium high heat. Once hot, add mushrooms and cook three minutes.
- Add shallots and cook two more minutes.
- Add remaining oil and lower heat to medium heat.
- Once hot, add rice and stir and cook for two minutes.
- Add garlic, oregano, salt, pepper and pepper flakes and cook one minute.
- Add sun-dried tomatoes and cook one more minute.
- Add wine to deglaze and lower heat to medium low.
- Add the shredded zucchini as well as the canned diced tomatoes with juice and stir.
- Cook until most of the liquid from the tomatoes and squash have been absorbed then start adding half a cup of stock at a time, letting each addition get absorbed before adding the next.
- Keep adding the stock in half cup increments until all four cups have been used and the rice is tender. Total cook time from the first step to tender rice is about 30-35 minutes total.
- Remove from heat and stir in the basil, parsley and Parmesan.
- Serve with additional Parmesan cheese over each portion.
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