Basil Pesto Risotto You Can Make At Home in 19 Minutes

We love recipes that incorporate fresh basil into them, including our Tomato and Goat Milk Cheese Tart, and Roast Beef with Frey Wine Gravy and too is a favorite.  We’re calling it:  “The 19 Minute Basil Pesto Risotto” for a very good reason; you’ll spend 1 minute making the basil pesto sauce, and 18 minutes making the perfect risotto.



For the Basil Pesto Sauce

2 cups fresh basil
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
1/4 olive oil
1/2 tsp minced garlic

For the Risotto

2 tbsp unsalted butter
2 tbsp olive oil
1/3 cup diced onion
1 cup Organic Ariborio Rice
1 cup Frey Natural White Wine
3 cups of Organic chicken stock


Basil Pesto Risotto
We’ve added the basil, cheese, pine nuts and olive oil to the bowl of the food processor and are ready to give it a spin.


Make the basil pesto sauce first.  Once you start making the risotto, you must finish.  Add basil, cheese, pine nuts and 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the bowl of a food processor to start.  Buzz till finely mixed.  Scrape the sides of the bowl with spatula, add the rest of the olive oil and minced garlic and buzz again until a thoroughly mixed.  Remove from food processor add to a small bowl.  Since basil will lose its amazing color and flavor quickly, cover and refrigerate.

Making the risotto now, add 2 tbsp butter and 2 tbsp olive oil to a deep skillet and heat to medium.  Add onion and cook until translucent.  Add rice to pan, raise the heat slightly and stir until rice is lightly browned.  Browning the rice first allows for the release of starches that will make this dish so creamy.  Deglaze the pan with Frey Natural White wine scraping up the bits off the bottom of the pan.  Stirring with a long wooden spoon, allow the wine to burn off but before it burns off completely, add one cup of chicken stock and just keep stirring.

Over the next eighteen minutes, you’ll add a cup of chicken stock at a time and just keep slowly stirring. When that last cup of stock burns off and risotto has a creamy texture. reduce the heat to low, stir in the basil pesto sauce and serve with additional Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.

Serves 4 as a side dish.  Serves 2 as a main course.

About elizabethd

Elizabeth Dougherty has been cooking and writing about food intensively for more than ten years. She is the fourth generation of chefs and gourmet grocers in her family with her mother, Francesca Esposito and grandmother, Carmella being major influences in her early cooking years. As a teenager, her family sent her to Europe where she became focused on French and Italian cuisine. She survived a year and half of culinary tutelage under a maniacal Swiss-German chef and is a graduate of NYIT, Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor’s degree in Hospitality, Business and Labor Relations. Food Nation Radio has won two news awards for content. Broadcasting LIVE each week, nationwide, on and stations around the country.

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