When it comes to vegan or vegetarian meals, one of the advantages is how simple they can be in comparison to traditional meat-based alternatives - simple in the ingredients used, effort required, ease of repurposing as leftovers, and also in the washing up produced! My favourite vegan meals are one-pots full of flavour and fresh veggies - this beetroot risotto is just that! This beetroot, harvested from my garden, provides the risotto with a rich, sweet flavour as well as a punchy colour. Whether you are a well-versed vegan, trying out Veganuary, or just looking for a new option when not ordering from ecoeats, this delicious, healthy risotto is for you! The recipe is extremely versatile, so feel free to add in any veggies that you have.

Ingredients:

  • 500g fresh beetroot
  • Olive oil (or rosemary infused oil)
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 2 carrots, chopped into half rounds (and/or any other vegetables you have!)
  • 250g risotto rice
  • 150ml white wine
  • 700ml vegetable stock
  • Handful of chopped dill
  • 4 tbsp vegan cream cheese (optional)
  • Vegan cheese (optional)

Method:

  1. Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Peel and trim the beetroot into small cubes. Place in a baking tin with 1 tbsp olive oil, season, then cook for approximately 35 minutes, or until the beetroot is soft.
  2. Heat 3 tbsp oil in a large pan and add the onion, carrots, dill, and garlic. Cook for 5 minutes until soft.
  3. Add the rice and stir well until covered with oil.
  4. Pour in the wine and stir until most of the liquid has evaporated, about 5 minutes.
  5. Now pour over the stock and place on a medium heat. Stir well for approximately half an hour, until the stock has been absorbed and the rice is soft.
  6. Remove the beetroots from the oven. Blitz ¼ of them in a food processor to make a purée, and chop the remaining beetroot into small pieces.
  7. Stir the puree and beetroot pieces into the risotto until well combined. If you are using vegan cream cheese, stir this in now too for a creamier taste.
  8. Serve with grated vegan cheese on top if you wish. Toasted pumpkin seeds also make a delicious, nutritious topping! Enjoy!