Indulge in the rich flavors of Red Wine Risotto

Are you looking for a simple yet impressive dish to elevate your dinner party? Look no further than this red wine risotto recipe. The combination of risotto rice and red wine creates a deep and rich flavor that will leave your guests coming back for seconds.

The recipe is easy to follow and can be completed in under an hour. You just need a few key ingredients, including parmesan cheese, mushrooms, bacon, onion, butter, olive oil and of course, red wine.

In this recipe, I’ll guide you through each step of the process to create a creamy and delicious red wine risotto. With a perfect balance of savory mushrooms and salty bacon blended with the richness of the red wine, this dish will surely impress your dinner guests. So, let’s put on our aprons and get started!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Red Wine Risotto
Red Wine Risotto

Are you in search of a fulfilling and hearty meal that is both comforting and elegant? Look no further, as I have the perfect recipe for you: Red Wine Risotto! This dish boasts a rich and creamy texture with a bold, yet subtle flavor that is sure to impress your taste buds.

The main ingredient of this recipe, rice, is cooked in red wine which gives it an earthy and slightly sweet taste. The addition of mushrooms, bacon, parmesan cheese, and onions add depth and complexity to the dish. Plus, the combination of flavors will leave you feeling warm and satisfied.

What sets this red wine risotto apart from other risotto recipes is that it can be enjoyed both as a main course or as a side dish. It’s the perfect choice for a cozy night in or when entertaining guests at a dinner party. One pot of this dish can satisfy all your guests!

Not only does it taste amazing, but it’s also easy to make. You do not need any special qualifications or culinary expertise to whip up this incredible meal. All you need are basic cooking supplies, including arborio rice, chicken broth or homemade chicken stock, olive oil or unsalted butter, parmesan cheese, bacon slices or pancetta, red wine such as cabernet sauvignon or merlot, mushrooms (wild mushroom assortments can bring some variety to the flavors), garlic cloves minced, chopped onion finely or diced onion medium.

This red wine risotto recipe is versatile and can easily be modified according to your preferences. You can switch out ingredients such as white wine instead of red if you want something lighter or even use vegetable stock instead of chicken stock for a vegetarian option.

In conclusion, you’ll love this Red Wine Risotto recipe not only because it’s easy to make but also because it’s packed with flavor and can serve many purposes. It’s the perfect dish to share with loved ones or to enjoy as a stand-alone meal. So, why not give this recipe a try and let your taste buds be the judge?

Ingredient List

 A satisfying and hearty Crimson Risotto recipe that will surely keep your palate entertained
A satisfying and hearty Crimson Risotto recipe that will surely keep your palate entertained

Ingredients for Red Wine Risotto Recipe

Here are the ingredients needed to create this tempting red wine risotto recipe:

  • Arborio rice: 1 cup
  • Butter: 2 tablespoons
  • Olive oil: 2 tablespoons extra-virgin
  • Onion: 1 medium, finely chopped
  • Garlic cloves: 2, minced
  • Red wine: 1 ½ -2 cups
  • Chicken stock: 5 cups, preferably homemade
  • Kosher salt and red pepper: To taste
  • Mushrooms: 1 cup of wild mushroom or mushroom of your choice, sliced
  • Bacon or pancetta: 4 slices, chopped
  • Parmesan cheese, grated (optional)

This recipe’s ingredients are quite simple and easy to find in any grocery store. Most of the ingredients are regularly used in making risotto recipes. However, the main ingredient is red wine. This ingredient gives this risotto recipe its unique flavor that will keep you craving for more.

The Recipe How-To

 A decadent and flavorful surprise nestled in every bite
A decadent and flavorful surprise nestled in every bite

Preparing the Ingredients

Before beginning the red wine risotto recipe, it’s essential to prepare all the ingredients properly. Firstly, finely chop a medium onion and set it aside for later use. Next, mince two garlic cloves and keep them on the side too.

After that, slice half a pound of mushrooms and cut four slices of bacon into small pieces. Once done, measure one cup of risotto rice (Arborio rice) and keep it in a separate bowl.

Cooking the Bacon and Onion

Place a pan on medium heat and add two tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Once the oil has heated up, add the chopped bacon pieces into the pan and let them cook until crispy. Remove them from the pan with a slotted spoon and place them on a paper towel.

In the same pan, add two tablespoons of unsalted butter followed by finely chopped onion. Cook this mixture until it turns translucent since we don’t want to get any color on the onion.

Adding Wine and Rice

The red wine risotto recipe’s main ingredient is rice that needs to be added with precision to get perfect results. After adding onion to the bacon fat mixture, Add one cup of red wine to deglaze the pan’s bottom by stirring continuously. Make sure you use red wine because white wine will alter the dish’s color.

Once done, add one cup of risotto rice (Arborio rice) to the mixture along with minced garlic cloves, salt as per your taste, and stir for 2-3 minutes till it becomes translucent.

Adding Broth Gradually

When you see grains coating over each other evenly in your pan, it’s time to add 1-2 cups of chicken stock gradually while stirring continuously. Add chicken stock preferably homemade any time during cooking when you feel like broth in your pan has dried out.

Continue adding broth until you get the desired texture of a cooked rice kernel yet having an al-dente center. The process usually takes 18-20 minutes.

Adding Cheese and Bacon

After you reach the desirable consistency of the risotto, it’s time to add a quarter cup of grated Parmesan cheese, cooked bacon pieces we kept on the side, and two tablespoons of unsalted butter.

Once again, stir the mixture until everything is evenly distributed and has melted correctly. Finally, add salt as per your taste if needed, and serve hot!

Note: You can garnish your red wine risotto with bacon pieces and Parmesan cheese to add an extra flavor to dish.

Substitutions and Variations

 A simple yet elegant dinner that looks as good as it tastes
A simple yet elegant dinner that looks as good as it tastes

While this red wine risotto recipe is delicious as is, there are plenty of ways to change it up and make it your own. Here are a few substitution and variation suggestions:

– Rice: If you don’t have arborio rice on hand, you can substitute it with other short-grain rice like carnaroli or vialone nano.

– Wine: While we used 90% red wine in this recipe, white wine can also work. If using white wine, consider pairing it with other flavors like lemon, thyme or seafood.

– Mushroom: If you can’t find wild mushroom, consider using other mushrooms like shiitake, button or portobello. You can also mix different types of mushroom for a more complex flavor.

– Bacon: Swap out the bacon for pancetta or skip it altogether for a vegetarian version.

– Cheese: Parmesan cheese is essential in this recipe but you can switch it up with another hard cheese like pecorino romano. For a creamier option, add some goat cheese or mascarpone.

– Vegetables: This recipe calls for onion and garlic but other vegetables like peas, asparagus or roasted red pepper can also work well in risotto.

– Protein: Try adding diced cooked chicken or shrimp to the risotto to make it more filling. You can also pair it with roasted vegetables or serve as a side dish to steak, short ribs or beef stew.

By experimenting with different variations and substitutions on this recipe, you’ll have endless possibilities for creating unique and tasty dishes for every occasion.

Serving and Pairing

 The bitterness of the red wine perfectly balances the creaminess of the risotto
The bitterness of the red wine perfectly balances the creaminess of the risotto

This rich and creamy red wine risotto can be served as a hearty main dish or a side to complement grilled meats or seafood. The bold flavor of the wine, mushrooms, and parmesan cheese creates a complex taste profile that is both satisfying and sophisticated.

When it comes to pairing this dish with wine, I recommend serving it with the same dry red wine used in the recipe. It’s the perfect match to enhance the flavors of the dish without overpowering them. If you prefer white wine or don’t have red on hand, a light-bodied white wine such as Sauvignon Blanc or Chardonnay can also complement this dish well.

For a complete meal, serve alongside a crispy green salad or roasted vegetables like asparagus or Brussels sprouts. This dish also pairs well with grilled meats like steak or lamb chops for a heartier meal.

For vegetarians, replace chicken broth with vegetable broth and substitute pancetta or bacon with chopped mushrooms, pumpkin seeds, or sunflower seeds to achieve great taste.

In conclusion, this velvety red wine risotto is an ideal dish for all wine lovers out there! With its bold flavor and creamy texture, this dish can be served at any occasion and pairs perfectly with your favorite wines!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 A delicious and colorful dish that will definitely level up your dining experience
A delicious and colorful dish that will definitely level up your dining experience

Red Wine Risotto is the ideal meal to make in large batches to enjoy throughout the week. If you plan to make a large batch of this delicious dish, you can refrigerate it in an airtight container for up to three days or freeze it for later use.

To reheat the risotto, simply scoop servings into a microwave-safe dish and cover it with a damp paper towel. Microwave on high for 30-second intervals, stirring occasionally, until the dish is heated thoroughly.

If you want to make-ahead the risotto to save time during meal prep, simply prepare the rice according to the recipe instructions without adding the cheese on top. Let the risotto cool completely before transferring it into a sealable container and store it in your refrigerator. To reheat your make-ahead risotto, warm it up gently and add parmesan cheese before serving up.

In conclusion, serving red wine risotto can be done several ways: as soon as it’s made piping hot from the stove or even after keeping in storage for a couple of days. The secret lies in following some simple tips for reheating this incredible recipe.

Tips for Perfect Results

 Risotto and red wine come together for a classic, comforting dish
Risotto and red wine come together for a classic, comforting dish

For perfect red wine risotto every time, I recommend using these simple tips to ensure your dish is a success.

1. Use the right rice: Arborio rice is crucial for a creamy and tender texture. This is an important ingredient that makes risotto, risotto! Keep in mind that other rice varieties do not have the same starch content as Arborio rice.

2. Choose the right wine: While you can use any red wine for this recipe, I recommend using one that you enjoy drinking. The more pleasantly the flavors come through in the wine itself, the better it will be absorbed into your rice.

3. Prepare your ingredients beforehand: This recipe requires constant stirring and attention, so it’s best to have everything organized and within reach before starting cooking.

4. Cook your mushrooms separately: To get a nice bite in your mushrooms, it’s best to cook them separately and then later add them to the risotto.

5. Simple seasonings are enough: Red wine risotto builds on the already complex flavors of red wine, so it doesn’t require much seasoning. Just salt and freshly grated Parmesan cheese are enough for a perfect taste.

6. Don’t overcook the rice: Overcooking can result in mushy or gummy risotto; therefore, be attentive when adding in your last cup of chicken stock and continue to stir until all moisture is absorbed.

7. Use good quality chicken stock: Using homemade chicken stock is ideal but if you don’t have this, use stock cubes or pre-made broth/juice brand that you trust.

8. Finish with butter: Adding butter just before serving provides an added richness and depth of flavor to red wine risotto while further enhancing its overall creaminess.

By following these tips, you’ll be able to whip up delicious red wine risotto every time without fail!


Now, let’s move on to the frequently asked questions about this delectable red wine risotto recipe. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced cook, these FAQs will come in handy and help you achieve perfect results every time. So, let’s dive right in!

Can I use red wine instead of white for risotto?

Red wine is a fantastic ingredient to incorporate when making a risotto dish. Although white wine is usually favored in risotto recipes, this does not mean that red wine cannot be used to make a delicious and elegant meal. In fact, red wine is the primary ingredient after the rice in a particular risotto recipe, making it a great pairing for the dish.

What wine is best for red wine risotto?

When it comes to pairing wine with a dish, it’s important to strike a balance so neither element overpowers the other. For reds, opting for varieties that have a softer, less tannic profile is a good idea, as they won’t overwhelm the dish or the palate. Excellent choices for this include Barbera d’Asti, Chianti Classico, and Nero di Troia, all of which have lovely aromas, a satisfying body, and a velvety, smooth tannin.

What is the best Italian red wine for risotto?

For an affordable red wine that pairs well with risotto, consider exploring Chianti, Valpollicella, Ripasso, and Barbera D’Asti.

What red wine for mushroom risotto?

When it comes to pairing wines with mushroom risotto, there are several options that will perfectly match the dish’s rich, earthy flavor. Red wines with a similar earthiness, such as Pinot Noir and Nebbiolo, will beautifully complement the risotto’s taste. Additionally, a lightly oaked Chardonnay or Pinot Gris, with their fuller-bodied white flavor profile, make exceptional choices as well.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this red wine risotto recipe is a perfect dish to impress your guests or treat yourself to a fancy dinner at home. The bold flavor of red wine enhances the depth and richness of the creamy risotto rice, while the mushrooms and bacon add a savory and earthy touch. Parmesan cheese provides a nutty and sharp taste that perfectly complements the other ingredients in the dish.

The recipe is easy to follow, and you can customize it to your liking by adding different vegetables or proteins. You can also substitute the red wine with white wine or broth if you prefer a milder taste.

When it comes to serving and pairing, this red wine risotto pairs well with steak or grilled seafood, but it can also stand on its own as a main dish. A glass of the same red wine used in the recipe would be an excellent pairing choice as well.

Overall, this red wine risotto recipe is a must-try for all lovers of rich and flavorful dishes. Follow the recipe instructions carefully, and you will have a delicious meal that will impress even the most demanding palates. Bon appetit!

Red Wine Risotto

Red Wine Risotto Recipe

Get your dinner party off to a great start with red wine risotto. Serves 3 as a main or 6 as an appetizer.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Calories 715.2 kcal


  • 2 cups chicken stock or 2 cups vegetable stock, more if needed
  • 3 ounces butter
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 ounces bacon, chopped
  • 4 ounces mushrooms, sliced
  • 7 ounces risotto rice
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 cups red wine, a merlot is ideal
  • 2 ounces parmesan cheese, grated, to serve


  • Heat the stock in a saucepan and keep it warm at the side of the stove. Melt half the butter in a shallow saucepan or casserole, add the onion, bacon and mushrooms with salt and pepper and sauté for 5-7 minutes until soft, but not browned. Stir in the rice and sauté it, stirring constantly, until it absorbs the butter, about 2 minutes.
  • Stir in about half the wine with a little salt and pepper and simmer, stirring, until the rice starts to dry, 5-7 minutes. Add a couple of ladlefuls of hot stock and continue simmering, stirring gently but constantly. When the rice dries again and needs more liquid, add the remaining wine.
  • Continue cooking, stirring all the time and adding more stock in batches. At the end of cooking, the rice should be tender, still slightly al dente (chewy) and creamy from the starch that has begun to leach from the grains. This will take 25 to 35 minutes and don't hesitate to use plenty of stock.
  • Take the risotto from the heat, add the remaining butter in pieces, and stir it into the rice as it melts. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Serve the risotto in shallow bowls or on deep plates with a sprinkling of parmesan. It is best served at once, though it can be kept warm for a few minutes. If necessary, soften it with a little more stock just before serving.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 266gCalories: 715.2kcalCarbohydrates: 34.7gProtein: 18gFat: 43.4gSaturated Fat: 22.7gCholesterol: 101.7mgSodium: 926.5mgFiber: 0.9gSugar: 5.9g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Easy, European, Inexpensive, Kid-Friendly, Meat, Pork, Rice, Savory, Short-Grain Rice, Vegetable
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