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Risotto Under Pressure

Servings: three to four as a side dish; two as a main dish.

“This speedy recipe is one of my favorites for the pressure cooker,” says Abigail Johnson Dodge, Fine Cooking‘s former test kitchen director. “In less than ten minutes I’ve got a great side dish for grilled chicken or pork. To make it into a main dish, I add leftover vegetables like mushrooms, broccoli, or peas, along with some chopped prosciutto.”


  • 3 Tbs. unsalted butter
  • 1 large shallot, minced
  • Pinch saffron (optional)
  • 3/4 cup arborio rice
  • 2 cups homemade or low-salt chicken broth (or 1-3/4 cups broth plus 1/4 cup white wine)
  • 2 Tbs. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 Tbs. freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano; more to taste
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size based on four servings
  • Calories (kcal) : 240
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 90
  • Fat (g): 10
  • Saturated Fat (g): 6
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 0
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 3
  • Cholesterol (mg): 25
  • Sodium (mg): 230
  • Carbohydrates (g): 31
  • Fiber (g): 1
  • Protein (g): 5


  • Heat 2 Tbs. of the butter in a 4-qt. or larger pressure cooker over medium heat. Add the shallot and cook, stirring often, until soft, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the saffron, if using, and cook 1 minute. Add the rice and stir until the grains are well coated with the melted butter. Add the chicken broth (or broth and wine) and lock the lid in place. Increase the heat to high until the cooker reaches high pressure. Reduce the heat as necessary to maintain the high pressure setting and cook for 6 minutes.
  • Remove the pot from the heat and immediately release all the pressure (either using a quick-release feature or by running the pot under cold water, keeping the steam vent tilted away from you). Unlock and remove the lid and check the consistency of the rice and the amount of liquid.
  • If need be, pop the pan (uncovered) back on medium-high heat and cook, stirring, until the rice is al dente and the risotto is silky and creamy, not soupy. Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining 1 Tbs. butter, the parsley, Parmigiano, and salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.


Rate or Review

Reviews (5 reviews)

  • dicktabbutt | 02/25/2021

    Unlike the disappointment by choffman, this pressure cooker risotto was great, just like the constant stirring type. The problems with an instant pot are two: they brown poorly, and they never reach the full pressure needed for a dish like this one. In fact, this recipe was based on a stove-top pressure cooker (a Kuhn Rikon is shown), which works beautifully. We added some mushrooms and leftover duck, and it was delicious.

  • choffman | 05/15/2020

    This is quick and hands off. That said, risotto made the traditional way is better. I am generally not a fan of InstaPot cooking because, while convenient, there is always a trade off as exhibited by this recipe. This risotto is overly gummy instead of creamy and sautéing in the pot yields uneven browning of the shallots (and less flavor as a result). I served this with roasted garlic shrimp with asparagus and a side salad of strawberries, arugula, feta and shaved red onion. Overall it was tasty, but only "weekday worthy".

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