Creamy barley & squash risotto

Creamy barley & squash risotto

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
(7 ratings)

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 55 mins


Serves 4
Barley is cheaper and lighter than Italian risotto rice, you can add all the liquid at once and it's really hard to overcook

Nutrition and extra info

  • Vegetarian
  • Healthy

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal586
  • fat11g
  • saturates6g
  • carbs93g
  • sugars10g
  • fibre6g
  • protein24g
  • salt1.1g
Save to My Good Food
Please sign in or register to save recipes.


  • 1 tbsp butter



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 1 onion, finely chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 1 small butternut squash (600-700g), peeled and diced into small chunks
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • small glass of white wine
  • 400g pearl barley
  • 1.2l hot vegetable stock
  • 1 tbsp mascarpone
  • 50g parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), grated



    Parmesan is a straw-coloured hard cheese with a natural yellow rind and rich, fruity flavour. It…

  • large handful parsley, chopped



    One of the most ubiquitous herbs in British cookery, parsley is also popular in European and…


  1. Heat the butter in a large shallow saucepan. Add the onion and squash, and cook very gently, stirring occasionally, until the onion is soft and the squash is starting to soften, about 10 mins. Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 min more. Splash in the white wine and boil down. Add the barley, give it a stir and pour in the stock.

  2. Gently simmer for 45 mins, stirring occasionally, until all the stock has been absorbed and the barley is tender. Add a little extra stock during cooking if it evaporates too quickly. Turn off the heat and stir through the mascarpone, half the Parmesan and all the parsley, then season. Spoon into bowls and scatter with the remaining Parmesan.

You may also like

Comments, questions and tips

Sign in or create your My Good Food account to join the discussion.
16th Apr, 2013
I think Laura T's point is that it's awkward when someone else cooks you something categorized as vegetarian when it is not and you can't eat it. Many non-vegetarians don't realize that parmesan is not vegetarian and it's embarrassing when something is served to you and you have to refuse it. It has happened me on many occasions, even in restaurants that should know better.
16th Apr, 2013
This looks lovely - will definitely give it a try ! Regarding the previous comments, you can get a vegetarian equivalent to Parmesan so you could always use that instead.
4th Apr, 2013
I swapped out the squash and seasoning for other flavours (as well as a different cheese - as the previous commenter said, Parmesan isn't vegetarian!) but the basic recipe is really good. Not much like a traditional risotto, but the pearl barley has a really nice texture.
2nd Apr, 2013
PLEASE stop posting things as 'vegetarian' when they contain parmesan. It is confusing when for family members who don't understand why my family won'teat things that are apparently veggie. Parmesan has extracts from unweined slaughtered calves stomachs in it - clearly not suitable.


Be the first to ask a question about this recipe...Unsure about the cooking time or want to swap an ingredient? Ask us your questions and we’ll try and help you as soon as possible. Or if you want to offer a solution to another user’s question, feel free to get involved...
Be the first to suggest a tip for this recipe...Got your own twist on this recipe? Or do you have suggestions for possible swaps and additions? We’d love to hear your ideas.
Want to receive regular food and recipe web notifications from us?