Here is a savory, creamy, and delicious pumpkin vegan risotto recipe that even meat eaters will love!
While this vegan risotto would be a good dinner choice for date night, it’s also great for quiet nights in with friends or family.
I find it goes over especially well on Sundays after watching football all day.
The first time I ever had pumpkin risotto, I was on a date.
Except, I didn’t actually know if it was a date.
But back to that in a minute.
The plant based pumpkin risotto recipe I’m posting today is something I’ve been working on for the past few months, adjusting proportions of the ingredients between trials to finally achieve the perfect rich pumpkin flavor and creamy texture in each and every comforting spoonful.
Use a shallow pan if you have one, which helps the rice to cook more evenly so parts of it don’t overcook before the rest is done. And if you’re pressed for time, canned pumpkin or sweet potato can be subbed for the roasted pumpkin.
It’s also fantastic with butternut squash!
While another rice can be substituted if you wish, Arborio is the rice of choice for traditional risotto recipes. Using Arborio rice in this dairy free vegan risotto recipe will yield the absolute softest and creamiest risotto.
So about the date…
We’d already been friends for two and a half months at the time, and many of my friends are guys. I never want to assume someone likes me if I’m not completely sure, even if it might be obvious to everyone else.
Our conversations were often about recipes, so when he mentioned making pumpkin risotto and I said I wanted to try it someday and he replied, “Okay, when?” I wasn’t going to miss that chance.
Suddenly the hypothetical I should make this for you someday became I’ll be over at five this Friday to make you a fancy dinner you will never forget.
And I never will forget it; not the risotto nor the night when I finally told him how I felt.
I’m a big proponent of girls making the first move… mostly because I am curious, impatient, and hate mysteries.
Not knowing what he was thinking was driving me crazy.
Vegan Pumpkin Risotto
- 1/2 medium butternut squash or pie pumpkin, or 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/3 cup diced onion
- 1 cup Arborio rice (brown rice can work; texture and cooking time will differ)
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- 3 1/2 cups vegetable broth
- 1/4 cup vegan Parmesan or nutritional yeast
- salt to taste
- For the pumpkin or squash: Preheat the oven to 450 F. Slice the squash or pumpkin in half, place on a baking sheet, and bake 40 minutes or until the flesh is soft and tender. (Note: The risotto can be prepared while you’re waiting for the pumpkin to bake.) Scoop the flesh into a bowl, removing and discarding the seeds, and mash with a fork. If you’d prefer a little texture, you can peel and dice 1/4 of the squash/pumpkin instead of mashing it.For the risotto: Heat the oil over medium heat in a shallow saucepan or skillet. Add the onion and cook until it begins to brown. Add all of the rice, and stir for about a minute. Add the wine, and continue cooking over medium heat (stirring often) until the rice absorbs the wine and the pan is mostly dry. Pour in 1 cup of the vegetable broth, and cook until the rice has absorbed the broth, stirring often. Repeat with another cup of stock until the liquid is absorbed. Continue this way until the rice is fluffy and creamy—sometimes not all of the stock will be used before the rice looks creamy, so don’t worry if you haven’t used it all. Lower to a simmer, stir in the squash or pumpkin, then stir in the nutritional yeast. Add salt to taste. Traditional recipes suggest letting risotto sit for 5-10 minutes before serving.View Nutrition Facts
Have you made this recipe?
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This risotto sounds delicious. It looks super creamy, as I am not vegan I will probably load it with real Parmesan cheese.
Miss Polkadot says
What a sweet story to accompany a delicious-sounding recipe! I really like to hear tidbits from your life and – stereotypical girl 😉 – love stories are obviously the sweetest. I’m assuming yours here had a happy ending …?
Mmm this sounds delicious!
Agreed, I never liked not knowing what the other party was thinking. I asked my now husband out and he said it was surprising I made the first move. Worked out though 😉
[email protected] says
So don’t leave us hanging Katie…what was his reaction?!
Rebecca Wright says
The Pumpkin Risotto sounds awesome! And yes I hope y’all worked out 🙂
And then what??? What happened after that lovely date? <3
Big smile and thumbs up for all your lovely recipes.
&?!?!? How long ago was this & what happened? Are you still dating?
Man, that’s twice the pumpkin in my version! I also swap out sweet potato or carrots and add a can of white beans.
Do you think acorn squash could work too?
Chocolate Covered Katie says
Haven’t tried, but I don’t see why not!
Linda @ The Fitty says
Looks absolutely delicious! I’ll try this.
Hey, you can’t just NOT finish the story! You are going to make me go crazy…This is all I am going to think about all day. And with three kids to wrangle, that is not a good thing. 😉
Wow, I just made this for lunch. Super delicious. A new favorite.
Dani Mendocha @ Styled Variety says
I’ve been making pumpkin everything lately, so this risotto sounds like a dream! 🙂
Dani @ http://www.styledvariety.com
“I’m a big proponent of girls making the first move” OK. That totally made me laugh. In a world that still pushes the man taking the lead I loved that you said that. How fun. Life is short anyway. Might as well know where you stand and have fun with the guy you are into if he is too!
WHAT?!!! You can’t write a post like that and leave us all sitting on the edge of our seat waiting for the end of the romantic chick flick I was just reading. Please tell me you fell in love and are getting married. <3 I've read your blog/recipes for quite a while now, but never commented. I guess that makes me a lurker? Is that why you wrote this…to draw out the lurkers?!! If so, it worked 🙂 Oh please write the end of that story. You're so beautiful and talented and as cute as Sandra Bullock. I did pin the recipe too, as I intend to make it. It looks delicious. But really, I just want the end of that story!! Hugs. Cindy
Sprinkles of Sweetness says
This looks SO creamy, seriously, I want to eat it now! If only, I had pumpkin and it was colder where I live, haha. Also like everyone in the comments what did the guy say? 🙂
I would love to try this with brown rice or quinoa! So yummy and clever! 😀
Aubrey @ Just Balancing Health says
Yummy! Healthy vegan comfort food at its best:)
Wait so what happened? Is there a to be continued somewhere?
Katie! I just found out it’s chocolate week! You should totally post something awesome to celebrate!!!
I don’t know about date night, but I think it will be perfect for breakfast… or is it? 😀
What do you have on top of the dish? I’ve never seen a herb like this.
Chocolate Covered Katie says
Bites for Babies says
I love pumpkin risotto!! In fact, I made it for Thanksgiving! We don’t make anything traditional so this year I made this with added crunchy prosciutto, and herbs de Provence!
Heidi Kokborg says
This looks heavenly! The perfect fall dish! 🙂
I made this yesterday for dinner and it was absolutly deliucoius! I omited the wine and used water and apple cider vinegar instead. I also used half the amount of risotto rice and added 1/2 cup brown rice. Yummie! Thanks for this amazing reccipe. I will sure have it again soon 🙂
Chocolate Covered Katie says
Thank you so much for trying it!
Hi 🙂 I would love to try this! Unfortunately I do t want to cook with wine (or other alcohol), is there anything I can use as a substitute for risotto? Thank you!
The commenter right above you mentioned they substituted water and apple cider vinegar for the wine.
Made this for dinner. It was delicious! I think it definitely could use some garlic- I’m a garlic fiend- my husband felt it could use some nutmeg and cloves (I think he was wanting something akin to pie, lol). I didn’t have white wine, so I did apple cider vinegar and water, too. I used Arborio rice. I wanted to make it as close to your recipe as possible, and I was not disappointed!
My boyfriend and I got together in a very similar way (friends for a few months, followed by several “is this a date?” non-dates before finally making it official). Funnily enough, the night we had our first kiss he was making risotto–he kept having to jump up to stir it so it wouldn’t be ruined! Next month is our two year anniversary and I just might have to make this for him…
this looks delicious! do you think it would work with quinoa somehow?
Unofficial CCK Helper says
If you experiment, be sure to report back. Sounds like a delicious idea!
I got my mum to make this risotto for me. It tasted delicious!!!
Thank you for existing, Katie. Honestly, when 2 years back I turned vegetarian, neither me nor my parents thought that I’d stick with it. Everyone thought that I’d feel so “deprived” that I’d just switch back. And then I discovered your blog. It was love atfirst siight/bite!!!
This is my new favorite recipe!
This recipe looks amazing; I’m making this for an autumny pot luck tomorrow. Heads up that vegan white wines are harder to find than reds (barnivore is invaluable for the search).
Tammie Wilson says
Just tried it and it was yummy! My daughter follows your site and requested I try this. I am so glad I did! Made it exactly as directed. No need to change a thing…
Do you know if this would freeze? I am looking into making postpartum meals and snacks ahead of time.
Jason Sanford says
I don’t see why it wouldn’t freeze just like any other risotto recipe!
Mandy Bailey says
Thank you! I’d never cooked this type of rice, nor in this way before. I added a squeeze-and-cook-with-it lime because awesome Misfits Market sent limes this week. My awesome husband made up a put-a-lime-in-the-pumpkin-rice song… Yum to all of the above!
Belle Plummer says
I use an old cookbook, still available on line, Microwave Gourmet, by Barbara’s Kafka, which has some real time saving recipes for base recipes Iike polenta and risotto. No standing and stirring. I like your recipes but am always looking to minimize preparation.