Oven Risotto with Garlic, Mushrooms, Asparagus and Spinach

I would certainly be the first to admit, a traditional risotto does require some attention and time. But what if I told you creamy, dreamy restaurant-style risotto with a fraction the effort is still within your reach? Yes! You can have all that without the constant stirring and plus its low in salt! 

 Yield: 4 servings Prep Time: 10 minutes Cook Time: 30 minutes  

Ingredients: 

Vegetable Prep:

  • 2 to 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil  
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 lb. baby portobello mushrooms, sliced
  • 5 to 7 asparagus stalks, cleaned & cut into bite size pieces 
  • 5 to 6 sprigs fresh thyme, deveined 
  • 1 teaspoon no-salt substitute 
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper 

Risotto:

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil 
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 3 to 4 cups low salt chicken broth* 
  • ¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon no-salt substitute 
  • 2 cups fresh spinach 

Instructions: 

Mushroom Prep: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Toss mushroom ingredients together on a rimmed baking sheet.

Risotto Prep: Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium low heat. Add garlic and arborio rice. Sauté until the garlic starts to smell and the pan looks dry. Add wine; stir and let it sizzle out. Add 2 1/2 cups of the chicken stock. Bring to a simmer.

Oven Part 1: Put a lid on the risotto pot. Transfer both pans to the oven (risotto on top, mushrooms on bottom). Bake for 14-15 minutes. Remove the risotto pot, but let the mushrooms keep roasting – increase to 400 degrees, and bake for another 5-8 minutes, until golden brown.

Oven Part 2: Place risotto back over a medium low heat. Slowly add in remaining 1-or-so cups of chicken broth, stirring between additions until nice and creamy. Stir in the Parmesan, unsalted butter, lemon zest, lemon juice, and no-salt substitute. Stir in 2 cups spinach until wilted and mixed well. Add in the mushrooms and serve. 

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