Pesto Risotto Recipe

Green risotto, also known as risotto al pesto, is made with pesto, one of Italy’s most well-known sauces. Coming from the Liguria region, the most well-known pesto is that of Genoa, where the Genoese pesto has become part of the city’s identity and symbol. There have been writings mentioning this green paste since the year 800, even attributing aphrodisiac properties to it.

Made with an olive oil base, a dried fruit (pine nuts, pistachios, almonds, walnuts…), and a fresh herb, its use in the kitchen allows for multiple applications: not only with pasta, as we are used to, but also in other preparations such as risotto, as we will see below.

In this green risotto recipe, we’ll make a basil and arugula pesto, which we’ll mix into the rice just before adding the base broth. This will give it a lovely green color, as well as flavor and perfume. The basil’s freshness, with hints of mint and liquorice, pairs perfectly with the arugula’s characteristic spice, which we give a function other than being part of a salad this time. The addition of butter and a good Parmigiano Reggiano cheese will give the risotto the necessary creaminess.

This unique recipe for green basil risotto with arugula, pine nuts, and Parmigiano Reggiano cheese will astound you.

Pesto Risotto

Pesto Risotto Recipe

Yield: 1
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Additional Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes

This green risotto or pesto risotto is ideal for people with little cooking experience because it is simple to prepare and can be ready in a matter of minutes. It has a fresh, Mediterranean flavor that is ideal for the summer season as well as low-calorie or vegetarian diets.


  • 350 gr. rice for risotto Scotti
  • ½ sweet onion
  • 1 generous handful of fresh arugula
  • 3 tablespoons peeled pine nuts
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • White pepper
  • 1 liter of vegetable broth
  • 1 bunch of basil
  • Olive oil
  • 3 heaping tablespoons grated Parmigiano Reggiano
  • Salt


  1. With a tablespoon of olive oil, mash the clean basil leaves and arugula. Reservation.
  2. Brown the soaked pine nuts in olive oil in the oven at 160o.
  3. Peel and finely mince the onion. Add two tablespoons of oil to a casserole or nonstick pan with a wide base and half-height edges and sauté the onion over low heat, stirring constantly, until it is transparent.
  4. Toast the Scotti risotto rice for 4-5 minutes over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. When it is ready, you will notice that it begins to turn transparent. Stir in the basil and arugula mash to incorporate it into the rice.
  5. Reduce the heat again at this point. It's time to slowly pour in the hot broth, ladling it in with a ladle and stirring constantly. Allow it to cook before adding each stock, checking to ensure that the texture is creamy and not too dry or wet. The entire cooking time will be between 15 and 18 minutes. Season the last broth shot with salt and pepper, but keep in mind that you'll be using a particularly salty cheese, so adjust the amount of salt accordingly.
  6. When the Scotti risotto rice is al dente, remove it from the heat and add the butter and Parmigiano cheese, stirring vigorously to combine all of the ingredients.
  7. Allow to stand for a few minutes, covered. To serve, garnish with pine nuts and extra parmigiano flakes.
  8. You can now enjoy a delicious green risotto with pesto!
Nutrition Information
Yield 2 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 735Total Fat 31gSaturated Fat 10gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 18gCholesterol 40mgSodium 2595mgCarbohydrates 93gFiber 4gSugar 10gProtein 19g

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