Creamy courgette risotto

Creamy courgette risotto

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(16 ratings)

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 35 mins


Serves 3 - 4
This melt-in-the-mouth vegetarian dish served with pine nuts and fried courgettes is everything a traditional Italian risotto should be

Nutrition and extra info

  • Vegetarian

Nutrition: per serving (3)

  • kcal496
  • fat23g
  • saturates12g
  • carbs50g
  • sugars4g
  • fibre4g
  • protein22g
  • salt1.4g
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  • 50g butter, plus 2 knobs more



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

  • 1 small onion, finely chopped



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

  • 250g courgette, 140g coarsely grated, the rest diced



    The courgette is a variety of cucurtbit, which means it's from the same family as cucumber,…

  • 175g risotto rice
  • zest and juice 1 lemon



    Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…

  • 1.2l vegetable (or chicken) stock, kept hot on a low heat
  • 25g parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), grated



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

  • 2 heaped tbsp mascarpone
  • splash of olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 1 heaped tbsp toasted pine nuts


  1. Melt the butter in a sturdy frying pan, add the onion and gently fry until softened. Stir in the grated courgettes and rice, increase the heat and sizzle while stirring for 1-2 mins.

  2. Add the lemon juice and a ladle of hot stock, and bubble over a medium-high heat while stirring constantly. When the liquid has just about been absorbed, add another ladleful of stock. Keep cooking like this for 20-25 mins until the rice is just tender and is creamy. Stir in the Parmesan, mascarpone and some seasoning, cover with a lid or baking sheet, and set aside for 5 mins while you cook the remaining courgettes.

  3. Heat the remaining butter and a splash of oil in a small frying pan. Add the diced courgettes, and fry over a high heat for 2-3 mins until golden and just softened. Divide the risotto between shallow bowls or plates, then scatter with the diced courgettes and any buttery juices, the pine nuts and a few pinches of lemon zest.

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Comments, questions and tips

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29th May, 2017
Absolutely lovely. My meat loving partner says its his favourite veggie meal. I used low fat cheese spread instead of mascapone just to make it a little less calorific. I have made it a couple of times now and found that I don't need as much stock - maybe only two thirds - I think its to do with the water content of the courgettes.
10th May, 2017
I cooked my first risotto ever and it came out just lovely, creamy and deliciously soft. I have added some mushrooms as everyone in my family loves mushrooms :-) definitely cook it again!
15th Jul, 2016
Good, but a whole lemon with zest makes it too sour. Maybe just the zest, or maybe zest and half the juice. Will try again though, it is lovely.
bilyana nakova
4th Oct, 2015
just did this for lunch and it was great. i especially liked the lemony taste as i have never added lemon to a risotto before and it went great with the courgettes. the only thin that i changed is that i added garlic and used Philadelphia instead of mascarpone as i did not have any
28th Feb, 2015
Looked at previous comments & added garlic, peas & spinach. Had some black pepper Boursin that needed using so put that in instead of the parmesan & mascarpone. The black pepper went really well with the lemon & the fried courgettes on the top added a lovely texture.
22nd Sep, 2014
Also added garlic, spinach & peas all from the allotment. I grated all of the courgette & added 100g of soft cheese. I used 4 stock cubes which was abit excessive & i personally found a little overpowering. I'm never sure how many stock cubes to use when recipes state a quantity of stock. First time making risotto and would make again. Went down well with the family, who wanted seconds!
7th Aug, 2014
Absolutely amazing! Veg-phobic husband loved it too. Next time I'll try it with low fat cream cheese instead of mascarpone to make it healthier.
16th Jul, 2014
Delicious! I used a large onion and added asparagus and spinach to increase the veg quota. I also used 200g of rice due to the extra veg. Otherwise I followed the recipe as above and will definitely be making again.
4th Jul, 2014
I think this needs a medium or large onion. I differed from the recipe on the following: I used 1 large courgette grated, 1 pack smoked bacon bits (have also made this with pancetta), 1.2litres chicken stock, 50g parmesan and didn't bother with step 3 (diced courgette & pine nuts). Absolutely delicious, kids loved it as well. Freezes well & reheats in micro. Don't be tempted to leave out the lemon juice - it totally makes this dish.
23rd Jun, 2014
Nice dish. Bit bland so addition of bacon is required for me! Also used light cream cheese with herbs and garlic instead of mascarpone and parmesan, making it a bit healthier!
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