Dee-licious Vegetarian Risotto with Pumpkin, Spinach and Feta

Okay, so in keeping with my recent habit of reviving old posts in order to share delicious recipes, here is an absolutely scrumptious risotto recipe. I have to admit I haven’t made it in a while, but now I am posting this, I am going to have to. It’s making me hungry just thinking about it.

I do have a post I want to write about why I am absolutely loving selling Norwex products, and giving them away on this blog. It’s about seeing people cut out chemicals from their routines, and hearing stories about how they were able to get stains out of their carpet they never thought they could (just with the envirocloth), or how the shea butter or washing powder or even baby bubble bath has made all the difference to their (or their little one’s) eczema.

But, all those stories and my overflowing enthusiasm will have to wait until another week (and not next week, because that will be the grand final in my giveaways!), because today I want to share this yummy risotto. I used to be vegetarian, but over the years meat has crept into more and more of my meals. I don’t have a problem with eating ethically bred meat, per se, but it does generally have a much higher carbon footprint than vegetables. So eating more meat-free meals is a great way to reduce your footprint.

Here’s the recipe:

steamed vegetables - pumkin, asparagus, broccoli |


1 medium onion, diced
2 cups arborio rice
4½ cups stock (whatever sort you like, but obviously it’s not vegetarian if you use a meat stock)
~1 cup chopped pumpkin
1 bunch asparagus, chopped
~½ cup chopped broccoli
~1 cup baby spinach leaves
pinch salt
350g jar feta cheese marinated in olive oil and herbs (I used a brand called South Cape, but I’m sure there are other options)


  1. Heat a large pan (I used a wok shaped pan with a flat bottom) over a medium high heat and add about 2 tbps of oil out of the feta (smells divine as it heats).
  2. Saute the onion until translucent and starting to turn golden.
  3. Turn the heat down to medium. Add the 2 cups of arborio rice and stir until it begins to change colour (about 5 minutes).
  4. Add 1/2 cup stock and stir until absorbed (instead of stock, you could use white wine for this step).
  5. Add another 2 cups stock and simmer until absorbed, stirring constantly. Add more liquid as necessary to achieve a nice texture for your rice. This took about 1/2 hour and I reckon I added close to another cup of water. You could use more stock, but my stock was homemade and quite concentrated.
  6. Now, this is the tricky bit. While that’s happening you need to steam the other vegies. I get Kid Number 1 to help with the stirring, but if you don’t have someone to help, well you just have to make sure you are organised with the vegetables all chopped beforehand. So – I steamed the vegies one kind at a time, because they take different lengths of time, but just reusing the same water.
    • Pumpkin – I didn’t time it, opps! But I think it was about 10-15 minutes. According to this eHow article on How to Steam a Pumpkin 15 minutes should do it. Unlike this author I just served with the skin left on, but this can depend on what sort of pumpkin you choose (and how lazy you are!).
    • Broccoli – I used frozen and steamed it for about 5 or 6 minutes.
    • Asparagus – I steamed this for about 5 minutes, but 3 would have been fine.
    • Spinach – this I didn’t steam at all!
  7. Once it’s all cooked, drain the excess oil off the feta (but keep it, it’s great for cooking with or using in a salad dressing) and pour the feta in to the rice and mix gently. Do a taste test to see if you need to add some salt. Then add the baby spinach and steamed vegetables. Stir gently until well mixed and the spinach is wilted.
  8. Serve. Yum!

Serves 4 adults. Probably took me about an hour all up.


  • The vegetables are all optional really. My friend who cooked this for me originally just used baby spinach, and she used 2 leaks instead of an onion. The marinated feta is really the defining characteristic of this risotto. The pumpkin was a really good addition though, as was the asparagus.
  • I often cook it with chicken stock, because I usually make some up every time we have a roast chicken, which is something we tend to do in phases.


This post shared, as usual, at IBOT, along with many other lovely posts.

  7 comments for “Dee-licious Vegetarian Risotto with Pumpkin, Spinach and Feta

  1. March 11, 2014 at 12:35 pm

    I love risotto, pumpkin and fetta. Sounds like a winner to me 🙂

    • Kirsten
      March 12, 2014 at 10:05 am

      Me too Annaleis – but I think the feta makes just about anything yum 🙂
      Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Bec
    March 12, 2014 at 10:43 am

    Sounds yum!! I have a thermomix so I think I’m going to grab your ingredients and make it in the thermomix – too easy!

    • Kirsten
      March 12, 2014 at 11:24 am

      Great idea Bec! Double easy 🙂

  3. March 12, 2014 at 9:37 pm

    Oh this is one of my favourite risottos! Thanks for the yummy recipe – I’ll be adding it to my meals list this week! 🙂

    • Kirsten
      March 16, 2014 at 4:04 pm

      You’re welcome Lucy, I hope you enjoyed it 🙂

  4. March 16, 2014 at 6:08 pm

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