Smoky Risotto


You know that phrase “Your eyes are bigger than your stomach”? That basically describes me in a single sentence. I’d like to argue that this can be extrapolated to group pot luck settings. You know what I’m talking about… Eight friends are each bringing a contributing dish for the meal/party. No one wants to be that person who doesn’t contribute enough/as much as everyone else. But in reality, everyone is bringing a dish (or two, or five) that feeds many people, and everyone wants to taste some of everything. So at the end of the shindig, for better or worse, you’re always left with a smorgasbord of leftovers.

This raving does have a point. We were predictably victims of the too big potluck eyes for Friendsgiving. Our friend Brandon smoked our Friendsgiving turkey in his Big Green Egg. Based on the size of the egg, the boys were a little worried that the size turkey that would fit in the egg, might not be large enough to feed everyone. So we brought some chicken quarters over in the morning and smoked them after the turkey was done. [Side note: smoked Thanksgiving turkey is amaaaazing!] Shockingly, we didn’t finished the turkey, and Selim and I found ourselves in possession of an absurd amount of chicken.

Hence, we have smoked chicken in abundance for this dish. I personally would not go out and smoke a chicken just to make this recipe. Save it for a time when you have leftover smoked chicken, or snag a rotisserie chicken at the store for a substitute. Please note though, the way this is prepared, raw chicken will not be sufficiently cooked. Pre-cooked chicken is needed.



Smoky Risotto

  • 2 tsp neutral oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups arborio rice
  • 3-4+ cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp chipotle powder
  • 10 oz fresh green beans, snapped in half
  • 1 cup green peas
  • 1 1/2 cups smoked chicken, chopped
  1. Using a large pan, heat the oil over medium heat.
  2. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, warm the stock.
  3. Add the onions and garlic. Cook for 6-8 minutes. They should be soft and fragrant.
  4. Lower heat to just a bit. Add the arborio rice. Stir a few times to coat the rice in any remaining oil.
  5. Begin adding stock to the pan by the ladleful. Stir frequently until all of the liquid has been absorbed by the rice.
  6. Add spices and stir to coat well.
  7. Repeat step 5 over and over, until the rice has softened, but is still a bit al dente for eating. It took me ~30 minutes to get to this point.
  8. At this point, add the vegetables and chicken. Stir in a double ladleful of stock and cover. Leave covered for 3 minutes.
  9. Return to your previous routine of adding stock by the ladleful and stirring until rice is soft and creamy. (Your stirring may be a bit more difficult now that there’s other stuff in the pan.)
  10. Once the texture has softened to your liking, add the cheese. Stir to combine.
  11. Taste for and add salt & pepper as desired.
  12. Serve topped with an extra pinch of cheese on top.
Serves 5-6.

Post-dinner notes: I think next time I’d add more chicken. It kind of got lost amid the rice and vegetables. I also meant to use this fancy Smoked Olive Oil, but forgot. Next time!

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