Apple Raisin Risotto Recipe from Italy - Brown Sugar, Butter, Arborio, Cinnamon, and Marsala

Apple Raisin Risotto

Apple Raisin Risotto Recipe from Italy - Brown Sugar, Butter, Arborio, Cinnamon, and Marsala
Region / culture: Italy | Preparation time: 10 minutes | Cooking time: 30 minutes | Servings: 4


Apple Raisin Risotto
Apple Raisin Risotto

Apple Raisin Risotto is a delightful twist on the traditional Italian risotto, incorporating the sweet and tart flavors of apples and raisins into the creamy, comforting dish. This recipe is perfect for those who enjoy experimenting with flavors and textures in their cooking. It combines the rich, savory taste of risotto with the natural sweetness of fruit, making it an excellent choice for a cozy dinner or a festive autumn meal.


The concept of fruit risottos, while not traditional in the strictest sense, has been embraced by modern cooks looking to add a sweet and savory element to their meals. The history of risotto itself dates back to the 11th century when rice was first introduced to Italy from Asia. Over the centuries, this dish has evolved, with each region in Italy adding its own local ingredients. The Apple Raisin Risotto is a contemporary variation, showcasing how versatile risotto can be.


How to prepare

  1. Heat sugar and 1 tbsp of butter in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add apple and raisins; sauté quickly.
  3. Add rice, salt, and cinnamon; stir for 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Add wine; stir until absorbed. Increase heat to medium-high; stir in apple juice.
  5. Cook, uncovered, stirring frequently, until the juice is absorbed.
  6. Continue stirring and adding water, allowing each cup to be absorbed before adding another, until the rice is tender and the mixture has a creamy consistency.
  7. It will take approximately 25 to 30 minutes. Serve immediately.


  • 1. Pear and Gorgonzola Risotto: Substitute pears for apples and add crumbled Gorgonzola cheese for a creamy, tangy flavor.
  • 2. Pumpkin Risotto: Replace the apple and raisins with pumpkin puree and add sage for a fall-inspired dish.
  • 3. Vegan Apple Raisin Risotto: Use olive oil instead of margarine and ensure the wine is vegan.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

1. Use a wide, shallow pan for even cooking.

2. Constant stirring is key to releasing the rice's starch and achieving a creamy texture.

3. Warm the apple juice and water before adding them to the rice to maintain a consistent cooking temperature.

4. Taste the risotto frequently towards the end of cooking to ensure the rice is perfectly al dente.

5. Adding the liquid gradually is crucial; wait until the previous addition has been almost fully absorbed before adding more.

Serving Suggestions

Apple Raisin Risotto can be served as a main dish or as a unique side dish. For a complete meal, pair it with a simple green salad dressed with a vinaigrette or a serving of grilled chicken or fish for added protein.

Cooking Techniques

The key technique in making risotto is the constant stirring and gradual addition of liquid. This process, known as the "risotto method," ensures the rice cooks evenly and releases its starch, resulting in the creamy texture risotto is known for.

Ingredient Substitutions

1. Olive oil can be used instead of margarine for a healthier fat option.

2. Dried cranberries or cherries can replace raisins for a different flavor profile.

3. Vegetable stock can be used instead of water for added depth of flavor.

Make Ahead Tips

Risotto is best served fresh, but you can prepare the ingredients ahead of time. Dice the apple, measure out the raisins, rice, and liquids, and have them ready to go to streamline the cooking process.

Presentation Ideas

Serve the risotto in a shallow bowl with a sprinkle of cinnamon on top for a touch of warmth and color. Garnish with a few thin apple slices or a sprig of fresh thyme for an elegant finish.

Pairing Recommendations

A light, crisp white wine such as Pinot Grigio complements the sweetness of the apples and raisins in the risotto. For non-alcoholic options, sparkling apple cider or a tart lemonade would pair nicely.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Store leftover risotto in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two days. To reheat, add a little water or apple juice and warm it on the stove over low heat, stirring frequently until heated through.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

A single serving of Apple Raisin Risotto contains approximately 300-350 calories, making it a moderate option calorie-wise. The exact count may vary depending on the specific ingredients used and serving size.


A serving of Apple Raisin Risotto is rich in carbohydrates, primarily from the arborio rice and the natural sugars in the apples and raisins. The rice provides the body with slow-releasing energy, making this dish a satisfying option for a hearty meal.


The fats in this recipe come from the margarine used in sautéing. Using margarine instead of butter can slightly reduce the saturated fat content, making it a marginally healthier option. However, the overall fat content remains low, making this dish suitable for those monitoring their fat intake.


Apple Raisin Risotto is not a high-protein dish, as the primary ingredients are carbohydrates. However, the small amount of protein present comes from the rice. For a protein boost, consider serving this risotto as a side dish alongside a lean protein source.

Vitamins and minerals

This dish provides a variety of vitamins and minerals, particularly from the apples and raisins. Apples are a good source of vitamin C and dietary fiber, while raisins offer iron and potassium. Together, they contribute to the overall nutritional value of the meal.


The primary allergen concern in this recipe is the margarine, which may contain dairy depending on the brand. Those with gluten sensitivities should ensure that the wine and stock used are gluten-free. Always check labels if you have specific food allergies.


Overall, Apple Raisin Risotto is a moderately healthy dish that balances carbohydrates, fats, and a variety of vitamins and minerals. It's a comforting meal with a relatively low calorie count, suitable for those looking for a hearty yet nutritious option.


Apple Raisin Risotto is a delightful and nutritious dish that combines the creamy texture of traditional risotto with the sweet and tart flavors of apples and raisins. With its rich carbohydrate content and moderate calorie count, it's a satisfying meal that offers a variety of vitamins and minerals. Whether served as a main dish or a unique side, this risotto is sure to impress with its comforting flavors and elegant presentation.

How did I get this recipe?

I recall the feeling of curiosity that washed over me when I found this recipe for Apple Raisin Risotto. It was a warm spring day, and I was rummaging through an old recipe book that had been passed down to me from my mother. As I turned the yellowed pages, my eyes fell upon the handwritten recipe for this unique dish.

I had never heard of Apple Raisin Risotto before, but the combination of sweet apples and plump raisins with creamy rice intrigued me. I knew I had to try it. So, with a sense of excitement and anticipation, I gathered the ingredients and set to work in the kitchen.

The recipe called for Arborio rice, apples, raisins, cinnamon, nutmeg, butter, and a touch of sugar. As I sautéed the apples in butter, the sweet aroma filled the kitchen, making my mouth water in anticipation. I added the rice and began to stir, watching as the grains slowly absorbed the flavors of the apples and spices.

As the risotto cooked, I couldn't help but think back to the many recipes I had learned over the years. Some came from cookbooks, others from friends and family members. Each one had its own story, its own memories attached to it.

One of my favorite recipes was for chicken pot pie, a dish my mother used to make on cold winter nights. I can still remember the way the flaky crust would crumble in my mouth, the savory filling warming me from the inside out.

Another beloved recipe was for chocolate chip cookies, a treat I used to bake with my grandchildren. I can still hear their laughter and feel their small hands helping me mix the dough, their faces lighting up when they saw the cookies emerge from the oven, warm and gooey.

But this recipe for Apple Raisin Risotto was different. It was new and unfamiliar, yet somehow comforting in its simplicity. As I stirred the creamy rice, the apples and raisins melding together in a sweet and savory dance, I felt a sense of connection to the past and the future.

When the risotto was finally ready, I ladled it into bowls and sprinkled a touch of cinnamon on top. The first bite was a revelation. The creamy rice, the tender apples, the plump raisins – it was a symphony of flavors that danced on my taste buds.

As I savored each spoonful, I thought about the journey that had led me to this moment. The countless recipes I had learned, the memories they had created, the connections they had forged. Cooking was more than just a way to nourish the body; it was a way to nourish the soul.

And so, as I sat at the table, savoring my Apple Raisin Risotto, I felt grateful for all the recipes that had come before, and excited for all the recipes that were yet to come. Cooking was a never-ending adventure, a journey of discovery and delight. And I, for one, was eager to continue on that path, one recipe at a time.


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