You'll love this Broad Bean Risotto with zucchini! This dish is packed with protein and fiber, making it the perfect meal for any time of day. Plus, it's easy to make and is packed with flavor.
Enjoy fava beans (aka broad beans) in this easy, tasty, and summery Broad Bean Risotto!
Risotto is one of those rice dishes that never goes out of style. And it's no wonder because it's so tasty!
Risotto is a creamy Italian rice dish that is usually made with Parmesan cheese and butter. You can make it with different types of meats, seafood, or vegetables. And it's always delicious!
This broad bean risotto recipe is a great way to add some extra protein and fiber to your diet.
Broad beans are a type of legume that is often used in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisine. They're similar also called fava beans and have a bright, nutty flavor.
In this recipe, risotto rice is cooked with the flavors of white wine, and garlic, and added zucchini and parmesan cheese.
Add in shelled fava beans and you have a meal that is both filling, satisfying, and tastes just like it came out of your favorite Italian restaurant!
Why You'll Love This Recipe
Broad beans are a great source of protein and fiber
This dish is easy to make and can be served for brunch, lunch, or dinner.
It's packed with flavor and will leave you feeling satisfied.
A great way to introduce someone to the mighty fava bean!
- Peeled Broad Beans - These give the risotto a great texture and heartiness and can be prepared with a few simple steps. They can be bought in their pod, or de-podded and in their thick shells. You want the bright green beans inside the thick shells. The recipe will show you how to shell them!
- Zucchini (Courgettes) - This garden-fresh vegetable is a great way to add texture, flavor, and nutrients to the dish.
- Olive Oil & Butter - These cooking oils are used to saute the vegetables while also giving the rice a buttery flavor.
- Garlic & Shallots - Add a mild garlic and onion flavor to the dish that pairs well with the rest of the ingredients.
- Dried Herbs - A hint of dried thyme or oregano adds a kick of herb flavor throughout.
- Risotto rice - This special type of rice is known for its creaminess and ability to absorb flavors.
- White Wine - This is used to deglaze the pan and add a bit of acidity.
- Vegetable Stock - This will be used to cook the risotto to infuse it with even more comforting flavor.
- Parmesan Cheese - Add some shaved or grated cheese on top for a bit of salty flavor.
- Ground Black Pepper - Used to taste, black pepper enhances the overall flavor of the dish.
Please see the recipe card below for quantities.
Wondering how to make this Broad Bean Risotto recipe? It's easy! Just follow this step-by-step photo tutorial. Then, scroll down for the recipe card for the full ingredients list and recipe method.
Prepare the broad beans: Add the broad beans to a pot of salted water, and boil for 5 minutes or until tender. Drain, run under cold water, and drain again. Remove the broad beans from their tough grey shells by ripping a hole and popping the bright green broad beans out. Discard the tough shells.
Saute the vegetables: Chop the zucchini into ½-inch cubes. Heat the oil and butter in a large pot over medium heat, then add the shallots and courgettes and fry, stirring often, for 3 minutes or until soft. Stir in the garlic and thyme and cook for a further minute.
Create the risotto base: To the pot with the vegetables, stir in the rice and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Add the white wine and let it sizzle and deglaze for 2-3 minutes to evaporate the alcohol.
Cook the rice: Stir in a ladle of hot vegetable stock and stir for a few minutes until it’s absorbed. Repeat, one ladle at a time, and stir constantly, until all of the stock is absorbed and the risotto is thick. This will take about 25-30 minutes.
Add the beans and cheese: Stir in the shelled broad beans and parmesan and heat through for a minute or so. Taste and season with a little pepper if desired. Serve topped with more parmesan cheese before serving and enjoy!
Top tips for cooking risotto
Risotto is a dish that requires your full attention to stir continually, so make sure you're clear of distractions for at least 30 minutes. Try listening to a podcast while you stir!
The white wine adds a lovely acidity to the dish, but if you don't have any on hand or do not prefer using alcohol, feel free to omit it and use a little of the vegetable stock.
It's important to use a good quality vegetable stock for the best flavor. You also want to make sure it's hot before adding it to the dish so it absorbs into the rice quickly.
Don't forget to season! A little ground black pepper goes a long way in enhancing the flavors of this dish.
Instead of broad beans, try using other types of beans including lima beans, fava beans, or even lentils.
If you're not a fan of zucchini, feel free to use another type of squash such as butternut squash or pumpkin. You could also use mushrooms.
You can make it vegan by omitting the parmesan cheese or using a vegan parmesan cheese alternative along with a vegan butter substitute.
Storing: You can store your cooled leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four days.
Freezing: To freeze, place cooled leftovers in an airtight container and freeze for up to two months. Let thaw overnight in the fridge before reheating.
Reheating: To reheat, add the broad bean risotto to a pot over medium heat and cook, stirring often, until heated through. You may need to add a splash of water or vegetable stock if the risotto is too thick. Check out this rice safety.
The pods of broad beans are not edible. You will need to remove the broad beans from their tough grey shells by parboiling, plunging into an ice bath, then ripping a hole in the thick shell and popping the bright green broad beans out. Discard the tough shells.
Risotto is a type of Italian rice that is cooked in broth until it reaches a creamy consistency. It is usually made with white wine, butter, and Parmesan cheese. White rice is simply boiled in water until it is soft and has much less starch released when cooking.
Yes, you can use canned broad beans for this recipe. Just make sure to drain and rinse them before adding them to the pan.
More Italian Recipes
Spinach Goat Cheese Pasta
Pan Fried Gnocchi
Air Fryer Gnocchi
Creamy Mushroom Pasta with Butternut Squash
Brussels Sprout Pasta
Italian Lemon Drop Cookies (Anginetti)
Pignoli Cookies - Italian Pine Nut Cookies
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Broad Bean Risotto
- 2 ½ ounces broad beans (75g) blanched and peeled broad beans *see step1
- ½ pound zucchini (250g) courgettes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 2 shallots finely diced
- 1 clove garlic minced
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme or oregano
- ¾ cup risotto rice 150g
- ⅓ cup dry white wine 75ml
- 3 ¼ cups vegetable stock 750g (enusure it’s hot)
- Freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese 20g (or vegetarian alternative), plus extra to serve.
Prepare the broad beans:
- Add the broad beans to a pot of salted water, and boil for 5 minutes or until tender. Drain, run under cold water and drain again.
- Remove the broad beans from their tough grey shells by ripping a hole and popping the bright green broad beans out. Discard the tough shells.
For the risotto:
- Chop the zucchini/courgettes into ½ inch cubes.
- Heat the oil and butter in a large pot over a medium heat, then add the shallots and courgettes and fry, stirring often, for 3 minutes. Stir in the garlic and thyme and cook for a further minute.
- Stir in the rice and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes.
- Add the white wine and let it sizzle for a few minutes and evaporate a little.
- Stir in a ladelful of the hot vegetable stock and stir for a few minutes until it’s absorbed. Continue, a ladelful at a time and stirring constantly, until all of the stock is absorbed and the risotto is thick - about 25 minutes.
- Stir in the shelled broad beans and parmesan and heat through for a minute or so. Taste and season with a little pepper if desired.
- Serve topped with more parmesan cheese.
The nutritional information provided is approximate and can vary depending on several factors, so is not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a registered dietician for special diet advice.