Courgette and basil risotto

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Simple cooking & prep

Courgette and basil risotto

Main Serves 2 55 min
This courgette and basil risotto is an easy, cheap and delectable meal – good with a green salad or on its own. All that's required for success is some dedicated stirring. Substitute the Parmesan for another hard cheese if you are vegetarian. Toasted pine nuts make a very nice garnish here along with the basil and parsley. This recipe also welcomes the addition of other light summer veg – asparagus, broad bean or peas.


  • oil for frying e.g. vegetable or sunflower
  • 3 large courgettes, cut into 2cm dice
  • 50g butter
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 large garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 200g risotto rice
  • handful basil leaves, shredded
  • 200ml white wine
  • 1 litre chicken stock
  • handful parsley leaves, chopped
  • 50g Parmesan, grated
  • salt and pepper


Prep time: 10 min
Cooking time: 45 min
  • Step 1

    Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a heavy-based pan. Fry the courgettes on a medium heat for 3-4 minutes to soften and slightly colour, then remove to a plate.
  • Step 2

    Heat half the butter in the same pan. Fry the onion very gently for 8 minutes, until soft and translucent. Add the garlic and rice and stir for 2 minutes. Season.
  • Step 3

    Shred in half the basil. Add the wine and let it bubble until almost all absorbed.
  • Step 4

    Gradually add ladles of hot stock, letting each absorb before adding the next, stirring often.
  • Step 5

    The rice will take about 25-30 minutes; it should be tender but still with a little bite. When it's ready, stir in the courgettes, half the cheese, the rest of the butter, parsley and basil. Leave to stand off the heat for 2 minutes, then stir gently.
  • Step 6

    Check the seasoning, then serve sprinkled with the rest of the cheese.

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