An ideal way to use up vegetables or leftover chicken/turkey or frozen prawns. Simply combine with your rice (from your store cupboard) to create a tasty Italian treat.

Serves 4


  • 1 large onion finely chopped
  • 1 large clove of garlic finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 500g of rice, ideally Italian Arborio rice
  • Approx 1800 ml/3 pints of hot, vegetable or chicken stock – either fresh or from stock cubes
  • 50g/2oz of butter to taste (optional)
  • Parmesan cheese to serve (optional)


  1. In a large saucepan fry the garlic and onion on a low heat, cook until softened.
  2. Add the rice and fry gently for 2/3 minutes, until all the grains are coated in the garlic and onion mixture.
  3. Gradually add the stock, one ladleful at a time, stirring until the rice has absorbed the stock.
  4. Continue this process until all the stock has been absorbed and the rice is al dente.
  5. Add more stock or water if needed, as every risotto will use a different amount. This should take approx 20 minutes.
  6. Stir in the butter and Parmesan to taste.


You can also add leftovers from a roast chicken and veg too. And if you have soft cheese or cream to use up, use instead of butter and Parmesan.

Recipe by chef Carmela Tomkins

See also