At my local farmers market, the tomatoes are just incredibly plump and full of flavor.

I have been wanting to remake one of my old recipes and have been craving risotto.

So, it seems like the perfect time to use those gorgeous red and oh-so-fragrant fruits in my recipe for the best-roasted tomato risotto.

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Roasted Tomato Risotto

Roasting the ripe and fragrant tomatoes with garlic and fresh thyme enhances the savory flavor of this dish. Stirred into a risotto, they all melt into the arborio and blend perfectly together.

Finishing the dish with some fresh parmesan cheese and a touch of cream makes the consistency of this dish luxuriously velvety. 

And? Let’s not forget the bacon. The smoky flavor of it is perfectly balanced by the wine. We cannot have risotto without wine, can we?

In this Article

Cooking tips

Keeping the chicken stock warm will help with the cooking process of the rice.

A cold stock will slow down the cooking, making it a longer recipe to make. And the rice will soften and need to be reheated.

roasted tomato risotto

Why You’ll Love Roasted Tomato Risotto

  • Flavorful – This tomato risotto has layers of flavor, from bright tomatoes and fresh thyme to rich bacon. It also has a pleasant acidity from the white wine.
  • Versatile – Roasted tomato risotto can be a savory side dish or serve as the main meal. You can also add protein like chicken or seafood to it to make it even heartier.
  • Customizable – You can substitute other herbs, use a different type of oil, or make your own creative changes.

Here are a few helpful tips for the ingredients needed to make this roasted tomato risotto recipe

While the list is a little long, all of these ingredients are simple and easy to find at the grocery store.

Tomatoes – ripe (beefsteak or heirloom), halved and seeded.

Extra virgin olive oil

Thyme leaves – fresh would be preferred as they release all their natural oils during roasting.

Garlic – gives your tomatoes a fantastic flavor

Salt & Pepper – the only seasoning you will need.

Chicken stock – I like to use sodium-free chicken stock. Vegetable stock will work beautifully, too.

Bacon – cut into ¼-inch slivers.

Onion – minced. White and yellow onion will bring the flavor out better than Vidalia, which is sweeter and will bring more of sweetness to your risotto. High in starch released during cooking gives your risotto its creamy consistency.

Arborio rice – The only rice that is perfect for making risotto.

Dry white wine – I always use the wine that I will drink. I never compromise as the flavor will be change if you use a lesser-quality wine.

Heavy cream – gives it that velvety texture.

Parmigiano Reggiano – One of the key ingredients to make the best risotto. Bring also saltiness to your dish.

Basil – chiffonade cutting. Place every basil leaf one over the other, roll tightly and slice with a sharp knife.

Chives – minced they add a

Roasted tomato risotto

Equipment needed to make roasted tomato risotto.

Cookie sheet – to roast the tomatoes, garlic and thyme

Bowl – to keep the roasted tomatoes once you removed the skin

Large saucepan – to warm up the chicken or vegetable stock

Large heavy bottomed saucepan – used to prepare your rice

Laddle – for your stock

Serving dish – for your finished risotto

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How to Make Roasted Tomato Risotto

  1. Place the halved tomatoes with their sliced sides down in the prepared pan or baking sheet. 
  2. Cover with olive oil before sprinkling with thyme, minced garlic, salt, and pepper.
  3. Place the pan in the preheated oven and roast until the tomatoes have softened significantly. 
  4. Remove the pan from the oven and allow the tomatoes to cool briefly.
  5. Once the tomatoes are safe to handle, slip off the skins and place them in a large bowl with the juices from the pan. 
  6. While the tomatoes continue to come to room temperature, begin simmering the stock in a large pot. 
  7. Meanwhile, heat the remaining oil in a large saucepan over medium heat before adding the bacon and cooking until browned.
  8. Then, add onions and sauté until soft.
  9. Next, add the garlic and cook briefly before stirring in the rice. 
  10. Once the rice is coated, pour in the wine and stir constantly until the rice has soaked up most of the moisture. 
  11. Ladle some of the stock into the rice and continue stirring until absorbed. 
  12. Repeat the process, slowly lessening the amount of stock that is added each time until the rice mixture becomes creamy, though the grains should be firm. 
  13. Add the tomatoes to the risotto along with the cream and freshly grated Parmigiano. 
  14. Stir, season to taste, then add the basil and chives. 
  15. Serve the risotto immediately.

What to Serve With Roasted Tomato Risotto

Rock cod in ginger soy sauce is one of my favorite dishes to serve this risotto with. Or if you prefer chicken, you may want to try it with roasted chicken.

This risotto also pairs well with a rack of lamb, stuffed filet mignon, or pork chops with balsamic caramelized onions. Or, serve it as a main dish with an endive and avocado salad or vegetarian cobb salad

Variations 

  • Olives – Give the dish some Southern Italy flavor by adding some black olives.
  • Protein – Add chicken, beef, or pork. Or omit the cheese and add cooked shrimp to the risotto. 
  • Vegetarian – To make this risotto a vegetarian dish, omit the bacon and use vegetable broth.

Frequently Asked Questions

What culture are lentils from? 

Lentils hail from Middle Eastern countries like Turkey, Syria, and Greece. 

Why do people eat lentil soup? 

People enjoy lentil soup as a healthy way to get lots of nutrients like B vitamins and iron. Lentils themselves are a great source of protein, and the broth is hydrating. 

How many types of lentils are there? 

Lentils come in four varieties: red/yellow, brown, green, and specialty lentils. I use red lentils for this recipe because they are most suited for soups.

Can you use sundried tomatoes in risotto? 

You can use sundried tomatoes in risotto. They add rich, savory flavor to any risotto style you may make. 

Why are roasted tomatoes better? 

Roasting tomatoes helps to concentrate their flavor. They become rich and sweet and work well in so many dishes. 

What is the most eaten vegetable in the world? 

While tomatoes are technically fruits, they frequently top the charts for the number one vegetable consumed in the United States and worldwide.

Roasted Tomato Risotto

Storage 

Risotto is always best eaten just after it is prepared, but you can store it and reheat it gently on the stovetop.

Refrigerator: Store this risotto in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Freezer: While risotto may not maintain exactly the same consistency after freezing, you can store it for up to 3 months in the freezer in a resealable plastic bag or freezer-safe container.

Roasted Tomato Risotto

5 from 2 votes
roasted tomato risotto
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 4
Savory and the perfect side dish to most poultry, meats, and seafood.

Ingredients 

  • 2 pounds tomatoes, ripe tomatoes, beefsteak or heirloom, halved and seeded
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon thyme leaves
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 1 ½ quart chicken stock
  • 6 bacon, cut into ¼ inch slivers
  • ½ cup onion, minced
  • 1 pound arborio rice
  • ½ cup dry white wine, ½ cup dry white win
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 cup Parmigiano Reggiano
  • ½ cup basil, chiffonade
  • 3 tablespoons chives, minced

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400F.
  • Put the tomatoes cut side down, in a small roasting pan or a cookie sheet. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil, scatter the thyme and garlic slices over them. Season generously with salt and pepper.
    Roast the tomatoes in the oven until softened and fragrant, approximately 12 to 15 minutes. Remove them from the oven and them aside to cool a bit. When they are cool enough to handle, remove the skins, they should slip off easily, and transfer the tomatoes to a bowl, alongside any juices that have accumulated in the pan. Set aside.
  • When the tomatoes are cooling, pour the chicken stock into a saucepan and bring it to a simmer. Keep the stock at a low simmer.
  • In a large heavy-bottomed saucepan heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add the bacon and sauté until lightly browned 4 minutes. Add the onions and cook, stirring, until softened but not browned, 6 minutes.
    Add the minced garlic and cook until fragrant, approximately 2 more minutes. Add the rice and sauté until all the grains are coated and glossy. Add the wine and cook stirring until it is almost completely absorbed in 3 minutes.
  • Add about 1 cup of the simmering stock to the rice. Cook for about 2 minutes, stirring ofte until the stock is almost absorbed. Gradually add more stock, a cup at the time, stirring gently until it is absorbed by the rice before adding the next cup.
  • After about 15 minutes, begin testing the rice and adding the stock in smaller quantities. The rice should be firm yet cooked through in 18 to 20 minutes total. When the risotto is done, it will be creamy but still firm to the bite.
  • Stir the tomatoes into the risotto. Then stir in the cream and 1 cup of Parmigiano. Taste and season with salt and pepper to your liking. Stir for another minute then stir in the basil and chives.
  • Spoon the risotto into deep pasta bowls and serve with extra cheese on the side.

Nutrition

Calories: 950kcal | Carbohydrates: 117g | Protein: 32g | Fat: 36g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 65mg | Sodium: 1146mg | Potassium: 1153mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 2530IU | Vitamin C: 37mg | Calcium: 357mg | Iron: 7mg

Giangi’s Kitchen provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as a registered dietician does not calculate them.

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Originally published on May 29, 2020. Updated on September 29, 2023.