Recipes, Local specialties, Risotto

Easy pumpkin risotto!

Easy pumpkin risotto

It’s pumpkin season and you are looking for an easy pumpkin risotto recipe, or a butternut squash risotto, but… Italian style?

Well, let me tell you: you are in the right place!

Pumpkin recipes are typical during autumn, and in Northern Italy pumpkin goes hand by hand with risotto. The recommended cities for having a pumpkin risotto are Mantua (Mantova in Italian), or Ferrara . Even if most cities in Lombardy have very good typical pumpkin recipes, I suggest these two places because they also happen to be amazingly beautiful cities, rich in history and architecture.

The choice of the right pot is totally crucial to obtain a good risotto. It is completely different from the one used for the pasta, about 8-10 cm high, traditionally in cast iron or copper. It is important that rice can cook in a uniform manner, so the pot must be wide enough and not too high. During the last years, I realised that no pot can compare to a dutch oven! It’s incredible how versatile is this tool, which I use to bake my crusty bread, cook my risotto, slowly cook any roasted meat, or even my ribollita. If you want to buy a good one, while helping this blog, you can follow this link, at no additional cost for you! 🙂

And finally, the last phase of cooking an Italian risotto, mantecatura, is crucial: see how, using butter and Parmigiano Reggiano, a good mantecatura will result in a perfect risotto!

Note: are you into risotto, but pumpkin is not one of your favorites? Then have a look at this fava bean risotto or sausage and barbera risotto! Otherwise… let’s cook!

If you like my Italian pumpkin risotto… just PIN IT, so you will find it when you need it! 🙂 and check my risotto recipes page!

Easy pumpkin risotto

Pumpkin season is one of my favorites, and this risotto is one my wife's favorite recipes! So here it is for you 🙂
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time40 minutes
Total Time50 minutes
Course: Main Course, Primo, Risotto
Cuisine: Italian, Lombarda, Veneta
Keyword: creamy, delicious, easy, vegetarian
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 380kcal
Author: Roberto
Cost: $4


  • pot
  • wooden spoon
  • knife



  • Start your pumpkin risotto by peeling the pumpkin and chopping it into small cubes.
    Pumpkin risotto
  • Finely chop the onion, and start browning it in the pot, using 40 gr of butter.
    Pumpkin risotto
  • When the onion is brown, add the pumpkin and cook it for 15 minutes, stirring it. This phase is important, to enhance the flavor of the pumpkin. Then add the rice, stirring it with no broth for 5 minutes, to toast it.
    Pumpkin risotto 3
  • Start adding some broth and stirring frequently, to avoid the rice to burn. This phase will last about 20-25 minutes, depending on the rice.
    Pumpkin risotto 5
  • When the rice is almost ready, remove from heat, add the remaining butter, the grated Parmigiano-Reggiano and stir with strength until butter and cheese have melted, then cover the pot and let it rest for 5 minutes (in Italian this procedure is called mantecatura).
    Pumpkin risotto
  • Your pumpkin risotto is ready to be served, with some black pepper dusted on top.
    Pumpkin risotto


As always, you have two options: fresh homemade broth, or a quick win (a good quality one). If you have time (about 1 hour), you can prepare your own broth using tomato, celery, onion and carrot, salt and water. Always remember (this is true for any kind of broth): add the ingredients to cold water, heat it until boiling temperature, then keep it at low heat for about 1 hour. If you are quite in a rush, the result will not be negatively affected if you simply heat 1 liter of water with 1 Knorr vegetable stock. I use the gelly ones, I find them more delicate and natural.
Black pepper is perfect to balance the sweetness of the pumpkin.

Suggested wine pairings

What wine pairs with pumpkin? Not the easiest question ever! But, since the dominant taste in pumpkin recipes is sweet, I suggest to chose a wine that can contrast this flavor.

A dry, white wine will be perfect, better a spumante brut, or a prosecco  brut. A great choice would be a Cartizze, denomination reserved to bottles coming from a tiny area near Treviso, like this one: , or a cheaper but definitely pleasant Valdobbiadene Superiore, like .

The opposite choice, quite common but that I don’t personally recommend, is to pair a wine with similar taste. In that case, a sweet, red lambrusco would be a natural choice. Try this one and let me know what you think about this pairing!


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Buon appetito!

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  • Reply Emma 10/22/2020 at 8:41 PM

    Thanks for sharing this, it is wonderful!
    Loved the black pepper touch.
    I had a prosecco with it… 🙂

    • Reply Roberto 10/23/2020 at 5:17 PM

      Thank you for your feedback! With prosecco you can never be wrong 😉

  • Reply Odeta 11/11/2018 at 7:14 PM

    I’ve had the chance to enjoy this dish and I must admit, it is great!!!!

    • Reply Roberto S. 09/27/2019 at 7:30 AM

      Always my favourite reader 😉

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