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Spring-Inspired Risottos

Elegant Rice-Free and Gluten-Free Dishes

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Spring-Inspired Risottos

Spring forward with rice-free and gluten-free risottos this season. Elegant, trendy, and nutrient-packed, they’re seasonal comfort dishes to usher you into the warmer weather with ease.

Stepping in for heavier winter risottos—made with white rice, loads of butter, and wine—lighter takes on the classic dish can be easily made at home using a variety of wholesome stand-ins. These impressive and elegant risottos skip the white rice, and instead employ naturally gluten-free whole grains and vegetables as their bases. Not only are the tastes bolder, but they’re also more nutrient dense. With cauliflower, peas, oats, quinoa, or asparagus, gluten-free risottos will help you spring forward this year. Light on the palate, bursting with the fresh, invigorating flavours of springtime, these risottos will still provide the comfort food factor we all gravitate toward in a bowl of creamy white rice—without the need to nap later. You’ll be stirred to cook any one of these elegant and fun to prepare dishes this season.

White rice-free risotto basics

  • Use a base of low-sodium vegetable or chicken stock instead of water to add flavour.
  • Before adding liquid, toast grains (or vegetables) for one or two minutes to bring out their nutty characteristics.
  • In gluten-free grain risottos, stirring often helps to create the classic, creamy texture.
  • Grains that become risotto-like and creamy, such as amaranth, millet, quinoa, and oats, can all be used instead of white rice.
  • Finely chopping quick-cooking, nonstarchy vegetables, such as asparagus, broccoli, and cauliflower, in a food processor or by hand can make a nutrient-packed, grain-free risotto base alternative.
  • Vegetable purées can add body and creaminess to the risotto base.
  • Instead of adding butter, cream, or cheese, replace half of the stock amount with unsweetened nut milk for dairy-free richness.
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