I love a good risotto but I had never made one from scratch until trying this recipe. This might just be my go-to recipe when I'm craving a deliciously savory version, now that I know how easy it is to create. To do caramelized onions right means giving them at least 40 minutes on the stove over a very low heat, so I started the onions as soon as I put the risotto in the oven. The timing was perfect, with the onions finishing up just a few minutes after the risotto came out of the oven, allowing the time needed for the risotto to sit before I dished it up. The best part is this makes plenty of leftovers, which are perfect for lunches during the week.
This recipe is adapted from The Kitchn.
mushroom risotto ingredients

Prep time: 10 minutes 

Cook time: 60 minutes 

Total time: 70 minutes 

Yield: 6-8 servings

Baked Mushroom Risotto with Caramelized Onions


  • 1/2 ounce dried shiitake or porcini mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1/3 cup olive oil, divided
  • 4 medium yellow onions
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1/2 pound cremini mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
  • 1 large sprig fresh rosemary
  • 1 cup Arborio or short-grain white rice
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to garnish
Cooking Directions
  1. Heat the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Rinse the dried mushrooms then place them in a bowl and pour the boiling water over them. Set aside.
  2. Chop one of the onions into a fine dice. Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a Dutch oven or oven-proof pan over medium heat. Toss in the onion and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until they soften and begin to turn golden, about 5-7 minutes. Push the onions to the edges of the pot, turn the heat up to medium-high, and add in the sliced cremini mushrooms. Let the mushrooms cook without stirring for 4-5 minutes, then flip them and cook an additional 4-5 minutes, allowing them to brown and create a crust in the pan.
  3. Separate the dried mushrooms from the liquid (but save the liquid) and add them and the rosemary to the pan. Mix all the pan's contents together and allow them to saute for 1-2 minutes.
  4. Add the rice and cook everything for about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the rice begins to turn transparent.
  5. Turn the heat to high. Pour in the white wine, vinegar, broth, and reserved liquid from the steeped mushrooms. Stir, being sure to scrape the bottom of the pan to deglaze it. Add in the salt and pepper, bring everything to a boil, then cover the pan and put it in the oven on the center rack. Bake the risotto for about 35 minutes.
  6. While the rice is baking, make the caramelized onions. Heat the remaining olive oil in a cast iron skillet. Cut the remaining three onions in half, and then slice them into thin half moons. Add them to the oil, and cook on very low heat, stirring occasionally, and letting the onions slowly brown up. Let them go as long as you can, at least 35-40 minutes.
  7. When the risotto has finished baking, pull the pan from the oven but do not uncover it. Let it sit for about 5 minutes.
  8. Plate the risotto, top it with the caramelized onions, serve and enjoy!

mushroom risotto

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Jaymi Heimbuch ( @jaymiheimbuch ) focuses on wildlife conservation and animal news from her home base in San Francisco.

Baked Mushroom Risotto with Caramelized Onions
There's no reason to stand over the stove for ages for risotto. Just pop this easier version in the oven!