Get that luxuriously creamy and flavorful risotto experience in a fraction of the time by making pressure cooker risotto. Pair with some fresh spring peas (frozen work just as well), and some crispy asparagus and you have a spring pea risotto that the whole family will gobble up. Don't forget to top with some arugula (rocket) to get that earthy, peppery bite. Yummy!
We love a good risotto. If you are craving a more traditional risotto that requires lots of stirring on the stovetop then check this version out: Pumpkin Goat Cheese Risotto with Pomegranate.
Asparagus and Pea Risotto
There is nothing that compares to an authentic risotto, but my gosh they take a huge investment of time!
For that reason they have become something we only enjoy for special occasions, such as Valentine's Day, or long weekends.
This Instant Pot version still results in a creamy and luxurious arborio rice experience with SO MUCH flavor.
However, it takes a fraction of the time to put together, and requires very little in the way of that labor intensive stirring.
Meaning it can be enjoyed ANY night of the week!
You will need:
- unsalted butter: you can substitute for some ghee or cooking oil of choice if preferred;
- leek: this is going to be thinly sliced, and we are only going to use the white part. Keep the green part, clean it well, and store in the freezer for making some Homemade Vegetable Stock From Scraps;
- garlic: fresh is best, however you can also use some of the prepared garlic if preferred. I would not recommend using garlic powder, as you just won't get the same flavor;
- arborio rice: this can also be referred to as risotto rice (although less common). It can be found in th aisle with the regular rice, and although it can be a little bit more expensive, it is definitely worth the splurge. You will not get the same creamy texture using normal rice;
- dry white wine: don't bother with anything super expensive, an average drop will do, something that you would have with dinner on a weeknight. If you don't keep wine at home you can just use more stock or broth;
- chicken or vegetable broth or stock: check the salt content if you are buying the stock and alter your own salt additions accordingly;
- parmesan cheese: we want this freshly grated. You can buy the pre-grated stuff if prepared, however that can have a grainy texture when melted;
- peas: these can be fresh or frozen;
- asparagus: fresh is best here. The canned version will get a little bit soggy if used in this recipe. We use the thin asparagus which cooks through super quick without any extra steps needed. If you are using thick asparagus spears you may want to blanch them in some boiling water before adding to the risotto, otherwise they may by too crisp;
- freshly squeezed lemon juice: this is for sprinkling over the risotto when it is cooked, so you are going to want the real stuff. In a pinch, you can use the lemon juice that comes in a bottle;
- lemon slices: this is for serving, so if you can't get your hands on some fresh lemons don't panic, but they do make the dish look pretty;
- arugula (rocket): this is a peppery green leaf that can be found in the veggie section at most grocery stores. If you are sensitive to bitter flavors you may want to skip this and just use some parsley instead.
I also like to zest my fresh lemons and sprinkle some zest on top when serving.
That's lemon 3 ways.
You are going to want to try and find a fresh lemon or two!
How To Make Risotto In The Instant Pot
Making risotto in the instant pot takes out the time consuming step of continuously stirring the risotto, which you would have to do if making it in the traditional fashion.
This version is not traditional.
However, we are going to use the sauté function to get some of those key steps into this pea risotto.
Using the sauté function:
- heat the butter until melted;
- add in the leek and sauté until fragrant and almost translucent;
- add in the garlic and sauté for about a minute, until fragrant;
- add the arborio rice and stir well to ensure each grain is covered in the butter: this step is important!
- next we are going to add the wine and cook the rice in the wine until the wine is almost completely gone. We want to have the flavor of the wine imparted into the dish, but get rid of the actual alcohol.
TIP: it is important to do these first few steps using the sauté function. Skipping these steps will really impact the final result negatively.
After that, it is typical instant pot cooking.
Add the stock, allow to come to pressure, quick release, add and stir in the rest of the ingredients, pop the lid on on to allow everything to cook through, and you are done.
Top with some lemon juice, arugula and a sprinkle of grated parmesan.
How To Serve Pea Risotto
Served topped with some lemon zest, a squeeze of lemon juice, some lemon slices, a small handful of arugula and a sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper.
If that doesn't sound amazing I don't know what does!
This dish is best served as the main event alongside a simple salad on the side.
Try one of these simple salads to complete your meal:
Storing, Freezing and Meal Prepping
Risotto is best eaten right away when it is made.
If you do have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the fridge for about 3-4 days.
When it comes time to reheat you will want to add a little bit of water, or broth, to loosen the rice up before heating in the microwave or stovetop.
Leftover risotto can also be frozen.
To freeze, allow the risotto to cool to room temperature.
Once cooled, freeze in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months.
Allow frozen risotto to defrost in the fridge overnight before reheating, or place frozen risotto in the oven in a covered dish to heat through gently at 350F (180°C) for about 20-30 minutes, or until piping hot.
Meal Prepping Risotto
The best way to meal prep this meal is to have all of the vegetables prepped and ready to go.
Otherwise you can simply make the whole dish, and simply reheat when it comes time to serve.
What To Do With Leftover Risotto?
Leftover risotto is just begging to made into arancini (rice balls).
We make a baked version that is super popular : Baked Leftover Risotto Cheesy Rice Balls (Arancini).
Easy to make, you are going to roll leftover risotto into balls around a small bit of mozzarella, coat in panko, and bake.
This way you get to enjoy these cheesy rice balls without having to deep fry them.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes and no.
Long grain rices like basmati and jasmine do not have enough starch in them to create the creamy consistency you would associate with a good risotto.
Brown rice can be a good substitution (like in this baked brown rice risotto), however the cooking time will have to be adjusted.
Yes if you have to.
Simply use some extra stock or broth with a dash of lemon juice in place of the wine.
Allow to cool completely before transferring to a freezer safe container and freezing for up to 3 months.
Asparagus and Pea Risotto in the Instant Pot
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter (or cooking oil of choice)
- 1 leek, thinly sliced (white and light green part only)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups arborio rice
- ½ cup white wine
- 4 ½ cups chicken or vegetable broth
- ½ cup parmesan cheese, freshly grated
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 cup peas (fresh or frozen)
- 1 cup thin asparagus spears, trimmed and cut into 1cm lengths (see notes)
- freshly squeezed lemon juice to serve
- lemon slices to serve
- 1 cup arugula to serve
- Turn the pot to sauté. Once hot, add the butter and melt. Add in the leeks, along with a good pinch of salt. Sauté over medium heat for about 5 minutes, until translucent.
- Add the garlic and sauté for about another minute.
- Add the rice, and stir to coat in the butter and leek mixture
- Add the wine, and cook until the liquid has almost all disappeared, about 1 minute.
- Add 4 cups of the stock (set aside the extra ½ cup). Pop on the pressure cooker lid, turn the pot to high pressure for 6 minutes.
- After 6 minutes, use the quick release valve on your cooker to release the pressure. Remove the lid and add in the extra stock, parmesan, 1 tablespoon butter, peas and chopped asparagus. Add salt and pepper to taste, stir to combine and then pop on the lid for about a minute to allow the peas and asparagus to heat through.
- To serve: place the risotto into bowls, add a squeeze of fresh lemon on top, some fresh parmesan cheese and a handful of arugula.