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Spring-y Lemon Risotto

April 17, 2013

It’s Spring at last! I mean, technically it’s been Spring for a while now but the weather didn’t get that memo until, oh, last week. C’mon nature. Get with the times.

Look. Compare. Here’s what all of March looked like:

And here’s this week:


Spring always makes me crave lemon everything. I think it’s the bright, fresh flavor. And Spring means asparagus season, which just so happens to pair well with lemon. I think you can see where this is going.

I confessed my risotto addiction in the fall with my Cheesy Pumpkin Risotto recipe. But pumpkin is out of season and lemon is in, so let’s make Spring-y risotto!

Spring-y Lemon Risotto

You can use Meyer lemons or regular old boring lemons – whatever you have. They’re both delicious. I happened to have Meyer lemons which is why my lemons look a little bit like oranges in the photos.

I use pretty much the same method as the pumpkin risotto, which means we’re cheating by heating the broth in the microwave. It works and it avoids dirtying an extra pot. I give you permission to cheat.

The rest is just some easy peasy stirring. You can do this!

Spring-y Lemon Risotto

Speaking of peas, they’re a fantastic addition to this risotto. Also, zucchini and asparagus. Get all your Spring veggies in there!

Lemon Risotto can definitely be a dish all on its own (especially when you add some veggies), but I really like to serve it along with some pan roasted salmon (this Sautéed Citrus-Herb Salmon is my favorite) and roasted asparagus.

Spring-y Lemon Risotto

Spring-y Lemon Risotto

Serves 6 as a side

To make it a complete one-dish meal, stir in peas, zucchini, asparagus or all of the above at the end!


2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 medium onion, diced
3/4 cup arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
3 to 4 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
zest of 1 lemon
juice from 1/2 of lemon

(optional) peas, zucchini, asparagus


Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and saute until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add arborio rice and stir. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add wine to rice. Cook, stirring frequently, until wine has been absorbed. Meanwhile, pour 2 cups of chicken broth in a glass measuring cup and microwave on High for about 2 minutes, or until hot. Raise heat to medium-high. Add 1 cup of heated broth to rice and continue cooking, stirring frequently, until broth is absorbed. Repeat, adding 1 cup of heated broth and cooking until absorbed, with the remaining 2-3 cups of broth or until rice is al dente and creamy. Remove from heat. Stir in Parmesan, lemon zest and juice.

Best served immediately.

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  1. April 17, 2013 7:20 pm

    Yum! Nice spring twist on risotto! I have a recipe for summer risotto that uses sweet corn and shrimp. I know risotto is a wintry comfort food, but it’s so easy to put a twist on in for the warmer seasons.

    • The Craving Chronicles permalink*
      April 17, 2013 7:22 pm

      I’ve definitely made this lemon risotto with shrimp too! Risotto is too delicious to be relegated to just one season in my opinion :)

  2. April 18, 2013 10:24 pm

    Your photography is absolutely beautiful. Makes me want to gobble up that asparagus! :)

  3. April 22, 2013 12:59 pm

    This sounds delish! I was just looking over some of my new diet options which included lemon risotto…perfect timing! A delicious pairing with the salmon and asparagus! I will give it a try!

  4. Celeste O permalink
    April 22, 2013 3:08 pm

    Still waiting for spring here in MN. We’re expected to get more snow tonight.

    The Risotto looks yummy!

  5. April 26, 2013 6:18 pm

    wow this looks like heaven on earth! it has all of my favorite foods on one plate! Well, except for some chocolate ;)

    great recipe, thanks!

  6. April 28, 2013 12:02 am

    This looks luscious! Luckily, risotto is time intensive or I would eat it every day! Lemon sounds like the perfect flavor for spring.

  7. May 18, 2013 12:22 pm

    Beautiful photography. I stumbled upon this blog entry and was immediately drawn to this dish. Looks delicious! Going to have to make some risotto for dinner now.

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