Saffron and Red Pepper Risotto

Saffron and Red Pepper Risotto - 6

Saffron isn’t something that I pick up often due to its price tag, but when I do, I like to cook things that show off the flavor of this delicate spice. I have trouble finding it at my grocery store, so I was lucky to snag some at a World Market when we visited family several months ago. It’s been sitting in my spice rack since then just begging me to do something with it…until a few weeks ago that is, when I decided that it’s been far too long I’ve made risotto. I put it to good use in this red pepper risotto, and not only is the saffron wonderfully fragrant while you’re cooking, but the color of the finished dish is just gorgeous. Also, it’s a great dish for some of these cooler days we’ve been having lately (if you don’t know me by now, I’m kind of in love with fall). If cooler weather hasn’t come your way yet, no worries…just bookmark this one for later!

  • 3 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 1 cup white cooking wine
  • Large pinch of saffron
  • 1/4 cup fontina cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

In a small pot, bring the broth to a simmer. In a medium sauce pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Chop up the pepper and onion.

Saffron and Red Pepper Risotto - 1

Add in the onion and cook until translucent. Stir in the red pepper and cook 6-8 minutes longer.

Saffron and Red Pepper Risotto - 2

Pour in the rice and cook 1-2 minutes.

Saffron and Red Pepper Risotto - 3

Add in the wine and large pinch of saffron threads. (A little saffron goes a long way!)

Saffron and Red Pepper Risotto - 4

Bring to a simmer, stirring frequently, until the rice has absorbed most of the wine. Continue this process with the broth, adding it 1/2 cup at a time, until the rice has absorbed the broth.

Saffron and Red Pepper Risotto - 5

Cook until al dente, and then remove from the heat and stir in the cheeses. Serve warm.

Saffron and Red Pepper Risotto - 6

20 Responses to “Saffron and Red Pepper Risotto”

  1. 1 Christine Says:
    August 17th, 2010 at 12:57 pm

    I love saffron! I actually almost always have some on hand because my husband loves paella and I make that once a month probably. But this recipe looks really good–and easy! So I’ll try your recipe later in the month when we get red peppers in our co-op.

  2. 2 Jennifurla Says:
    August 17th, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    This looks just so simple and wonderful…I have never tried cooking with saffron but it is on my list for usre.

  3. 3 Jessica @ How Sweet Says:
    August 17th, 2010 at 3:42 pm

    I don’t buy saffron because of the price too. I know I need to bite the bullet and do it. It sounds so good.

  4. 4 Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction Says:
    August 17th, 2010 at 9:32 pm

    Beautiful! I rarely cook with saffron, partly because of the price and partly because I don’t use it enough and I never know what to do with it (other than paella) when I do buy it. I’ll have to keep this recipe in mind the next time I see some at a market!

  5. 5 faithy Says:
    August 18th, 2010 at 3:35 am

    Looks beautiful! and your risotto is cooked to perfection!

  6. 6 Catherine Says:
    August 18th, 2010 at 8:03 am

    Mmmmmh I adore risottos! No matter how many I have, I never stop craving them. I’ve never tasted saffron before, but I’d love to give this dish a try!

  7. 7 Jenny Flake Says:
    August 18th, 2010 at 10:10 am

    LOVE the looks of this recipe! Must make!

  8. 8 Maria Says:
    August 18th, 2010 at 10:35 am

    I love the color! Great recipe!

  9. 9 Raina @ The Garden of Yum Says:
    August 18th, 2010 at 11:19 am

    This looks wonderful! My kind of comfort food:)

  10. 10 Michelle @ Brown Eyed Baker Says:
    August 18th, 2010 at 11:42 am

    I adore risotto and this saffron and red pepper version sounds delicious!

  11. 11 Tickled Red Says:
    August 18th, 2010 at 1:19 pm

    That is some very lovely comfort food…even better that it was all for you. You have to love our picky men at times for leaving all the yummies for us.

  12. 12 Maggy@ThreeManyCooks Says:
    August 18th, 2010 at 10:59 pm

    I gotta say. These are fall colors. And I’m LOVING it! Such a beautiful risotto!

  13. 13 Michelle Says:
    August 19th, 2010 at 1:02 am

    Although I enjoy saffron, I’ve not made anything with it in years. Time I changed that!

  14. 14 Shaina Says:
    August 19th, 2010 at 11:01 am

    Looks fantastic! I love risotto and can’t wait to make this one.

  15. 15 SMITH BITES Says:
    August 19th, 2010 at 11:14 am

    Risotto is a real favorite at our house and I don’t make it nearly enough – in fact, it rates right up there with potatoes! Adding the saffron & red peppers is absolutely perfect!

  16. 16 Cookin' Canuck Says:
    August 19th, 2010 at 1:10 pm

    What a pretty risotto! With fall on the way, I’m definitely starting to think about comforting dishes like this.

  17. 17 Eliana Says:
    August 19th, 2010 at 3:38 pm

    I would have no problem enjoying a big bowl of this even though it’s warm out. It looks too good to pass up.

  18. 18 Jen @ How To: Simplify Says:
    August 20th, 2010 at 5:46 pm

    This risotto is absolutely gorgeous! I love all of the flavors!

  19. 19 Ingrid Says:
    August 22nd, 2010 at 12:41 am

    Looks wonderful as always! Love your pics!!

  20. 20 Lauren Says:
    August 30th, 2011 at 8:10 am

    EXCELLENCE!! I am now a fully fledged Risotto fan!

Leave a Reply

Follow Me


Food Fanatic Contributor

Flickr Gallery

Sugarcrafter on Flickr