Dinner Tonight: Spinach Risotto with Goat Cheese

Risotto-making is supposed to be a tedious process involving biceps, stirring, and great patience—or at least, that's what I've always heard. Yet my own experience hasn't been nearly so fraught; over time, I've learned to relax, add stock in larger quantities, and stir only when I feel like it. So far, my risottos haven't suffered.

Lately, I've gotten a little ambitious using higher heat to speed things up, and I've found that if you stir constantly, you can cook faster without losing creaminess. This risotto, for example, took just a little over half an hour start-to-finish—so here it is on Dinner Tonight. The recipe is from Jamie Oliver's Cook with Jamie; its rich green color comes from puréed spinach, which is cooked down with nutmeg and garlic. Lemon juice and goat cheese offers a creamy tang to keep it nimble on the palate.

About the author: Blake Royer lives in Brooklyn and spends most of his free time cooking and writing about it here at Serious Eats and on The Paupered Chef. From 9 to 5 weekdays, he works as an assistant book editor in Manhattan.

Dinner Tonight: Spinach Risotto with Goat Cheese

About This Recipe



  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 tablespoon butter
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cups Arborio rice
  • 3/4 cup white wine
  • 4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • nutmeg, for grating
  • 5 oz spinach, washed and dried
  • 2 handfuls Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 4 oz soft goat cheese


  1. 1

    In a heavy saucepan, heat the olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter over gentle heat until the butter melts. Add the onion and a clove of garlic and cook gentle until soft and sweet but not browned, 10 minutes.

  2. 2

    In the meantime, melt a tablespoon of butter in a saucepan with a splash of olive oil, a good grating of nutmeg, and the second clove of garlic. When the butter has melted, add the spinach and cook until wilted down and intense, about 5 minutes. Allow to cool and puree in a food processor or chop by hand.

  3. 3

    Add the rice to the onion and raise the heat to medium-high; toast, stirring constantly, until the rice begins to look translucent. Add the wine, stirring, until absorbed, then ladle in some stock. Continue adding stock to the rice little-by-little, stirring continually, until the rice loses any chalkiness and tastes smooth. Salt as necessary.

  4. 4

    Turn off the heat and add the remaining butter, Parmesan, and the spinach mixture. Stir to incorporate well. Serve with a little goat cheese crumbled on top.


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