A perfect way to use up summer squash, the Bacon Zucchini Risotto is creamy, bright and fresh – so yummy! This is a great one pan dinner, or a perfect side.
I am ALL about the one pan dinner lately, I just can’t get excited about spending hours in the kitchen prepping dinner. I make this risotto ahead, and use it as a side, but I also cheerfully make it on the fly, because it’s one skillet, and dinner is DONE.
Why am I so excited about this one? Well, bacon, for 1. Then there’s cheese. And also green stuff, so clearly this is super healthy…. er. I’m a cook, not a nutritionist, obviously.A perfect way to use up summer squash, the Bacon Zucchini Risotto is creamy, bright and fresh - so yummy! This is a great one pan dinner, or a perfect side. Click To Tweet
This is SUPER easy. I have never really understood why people assume risotto to be difficult. Of course, it DOES require you to babysit it and add the stock gradually.
Why? Because arborio rice is high in rice gluten (different to wheat gluten – celiacs can eat rice!! – stirring it constantly helps the starch from the rice dissolve into the sauce, making it creamy and delicious.
You could easily change this recipe up by using different vegetables. A yellow squash would work just as well if that is what you have, as well as asparagus, spinach or broccoli.
Basically, any vegetable that will cook quickly in a skillet in a few minutes (so things like sweet potatoes wouldn’t work so well in this recipe).
Since we wait until the very end to add it, it needs to be something that can cook quickly!
Kylee’s notes on Bacon Zucchini Risotto
- Don’t worry about precise measurements when pouring in the stock. It just needs to basically cover the surface of the rice
- Simmer gently – a rapid boil isn’t what we’re looking for here
- Use hot stock!! The heat helps maintain the starch content of the rice
- Adding butter at the end is 100% optional. I just like the flavor it adds
- Stir REGULARLY but not CONSTANTLY
Look at these simple ingredients!
Want more rice dishes? Of course you do!
- 1 Tbs olive oil
- 1 medium onion diced finely
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 4 slices bacon thick cut – do 6 for regular, diced
- 1 cup arborio rice
- 32 oz chicken stock heated
- 2 large zucchini grated
- ½ cup parmesan cheese shredded
- 1 tbsp butter
- Salt and pepper
Heat the chicken stock in a saucepan, and keep hot.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet or dutch oven over medium.
Add the onion and cook for 5 mins to soften, then add the garlic and bacon and cook for another 5 mins, until they start to brown.
Add the rice and stir to coat thoroughly. Cook, stirring constantly, for 2-3 mins.
Ladle in some stock about ½ cup at a time, stir and simmer until stock is absorbed into the rice.
Continue adding stock, stirring regularly.
When adding the last ½ cup of stock, add the grated zucchini and cook for another few minutes, until the rice is tender and creamy.
Remove the pan from heat, add the cheese and butter
Season with salt and pepper before serving.