Bacon and pea risotto

Bacon and pea risotto

Dinner Like A Boss
4 people
10 mins
Cooking time
25 mins
Benito Martin

Once you’ve mastered a basic risotto, there are myriad different flavour combinations to try. I’ve suggested a few below. Ensure your rice is cooked properly – the rice grain should still have a little bite to it when tested, but it shouldn’t be hard nor should it be gluggy. White wine is added for extra flavour. You can leave this out if you prefer – just start adding the stock at this point.


Quantity Ingredient
1 litre good-quality chicken or vegetable stock
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
200g rindless bacon, roughly chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
250g risotto rice, such as arborio or carnaroli
125ml white wine, optional
300g broccoli, cut into small florets
155g peas, defrosted if frozen
35g finely grated parmesan
15g butter, optional
baby cos lettuce, leaves roughly chopped, optional
250g cherry tomatoes, quartered, optional


  1. Bring the stock to a simmer in a medium saucepan, cover with a lid and keep at a gentle simmer.
  2. Meanwhile, heat 2 teaspoons of the oil in a large deep frying pan over a medium–high heat. Add the bacon and cook for 3–4 minutes, until golden on each side and the bacon has released its fat. Transfer half the bacon from the pan to some paper towel, leaving any oil in the pan.
  3. Reduce the heat to medium and add the onion and garlic to the pan – and a little extra oil if necessary – and fry for 5 minutes until softened. Add the rice and stir for about 30 seconds to coat it in the onion mix. Add the wine (if using) and cook for 1 minute, scraping the base of the pan to dislodge any crusty bits. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Start adding the stock, two ladlefuls at a time. After each addition, stir a couple of times, then leave to cook, uncovered. Once the stock has been absorbed add the next two ladlefuls of stock and stir. Continue adding stock in this way until the rice is tender – this will take about 20 minutes. If the stock is used up before the rice is tender, add a little extra water.
  5. While the rice is cooking, bring a medium saucepan of water to the boil and cook the broccoli for 2 minutes. Add the peas and cook for a further minute. Drain well.
  6. Once the rice is just cooked – it should be tender but still have a tiny bite to it – stir in the broccoli, peas, the reserved bacon, half the parmesan and the butter (if using). Remove the pan from the heat, cover with a lid and leave to sit for 2 minutes.
  7. Serve the risotto scattered with the remaining parmesan, accompanied by the cos lettuce and cherry tomatoes, if desired.


  • You can replace the bacon with prosciutto, or omit the bacon and add some shredded cooked chicken for the final 5 minutes of cooking. Another idea is to stir through 200 g cooked mashed pumpkin 2–3 minutes before serving.
Family food
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