Southwest Risotto

So today I will keep this post short and sweet because to be perfectly honest, the weather beat me down this week. It’s only Thursday and I want to go back into hibernation.

What happened to that 50 degree sunshine that melted an entire foot of snow this past weekend?


I know I shouldn’t be expecting Spring in late February, but I think we all deserve a little break after the polar vortex. For all the days it fell below negative 10, we should have days where it reaches 50. It fell below -10 for almost a week so I want my week of sunshine!


Okay. So in order to deal with the frigid state of affairs, I made you risotto today.

To be more specific, I combined the homey comfort of rice and beans with the rich, sublime dish that is risotto. With an Italian mom and a Puerto Rican dad, it’s a wonder it took me this long to combine the two.

But I am so freaking glad that I did. Creamy, spicy rice with black beans, roasted corn, bell peppers, green onions, and plenty of white cheddar cheese, I promise you that this risotto will knock your socks off.

It wasn’t even that hard to cook! I will admit that the first (and last) time I attempted risotto I nearly ended up on my kitchen floor surrounded by soggy rice, this time I was strangely calm, cool, and collected.

The food gods smiled upon me and my awesome risotto idea, and lo, Southwestern risotto was born!

Did I mention that the cold weather has addled my brain?

Am I even using the word “addled” correctly?

I think so.

At any rate, Southwestern risotto will warm you up during these last few weeks of winter for sure. If you’re feeling particularly adventurous, or are hiding inside your warm home from the frozen tundra, you could even fry up some arancini with the leftovers.

That is, if there are any leftovers.

I’ll be back on Monday with a fun twist on Girl Scout cookies, so be sure to check back first thing Monday morning!

Happy Baking!

Southwest Risotto

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American


  • 1 1/2 tsp vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup red bell peppers diced
  • 1 cup corn
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp ground chipotle seasoning
  • 1 1/2 cups black beans rinsed and drained
  • 6 tbsp butter
  • 1 bunch of green onions chopped
  • 1 packet sazon*
  • 1 1/2 cups arborio rice
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 5 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup shredded white cheddar cheese
  • salt to taste
  • sour cream for serving (optional)


  • Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add bell peppers, corn, cumin, and chipotle and saute 5-7 minutes or until browned in places, then add black beans and saute for another 5 minutes until peppers have softened somewhat. Set aside. In a medium pot, heat chicken broth until warm and keep warm over low heat until ready to use.
  • Melt 2 tbsp of the butter in a large dutch oven or pot and saute green onions over medium heat for 5 minutes. Add the sazon seasoning packet, along with the rice, and stir to coat rice in butter and seasoning. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Carefully pour in wine and stir until wine is absorbed by the rice, about 3-4 minutes.
  • Begin to add broth, 1/2 cup at a time, to the pot. You don’t need to stir it constantly, but you do want to stir it often to keep the rice from sticking to the bottom of the pot. Once the rice has absorbed nearly all of the liquid (you should be able to drag your spoon through the rice and leave a path without it filling up with liquid) add another 1/2 cup, and continue for about 20 minutes.
  • Begin checking your rice at this point. You may not need to use all of the broth, so take little taste tests before adding additional liquid. You want the rice to be creamy but still have a slightly chewy texture. I hit this stage at about 30 minutes and 5 1/2 cups total chicken broth.
  • Add in the other 4 tbsp of butter, along with the shredded cheese, and stir until smooth. Fold in black bean mixture and salt as needed.
  • Serve with additional green onions and sour cream, if desired


*Sazon is a seasoning you can find in the Goya/Mexican section of your supermarket. It comes in a little box with four packets in it and a little picture of a pig on the outside. If you can’t find it, I would suggest using some kind of Mexican seasoning blend or maybe even a few tsp of taco seasoning.
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