Butternut Squash Risotto - pressure cooker recipe!


Butternut Squash Risotto - pressure cooker recipe!

This pressure cooker risotto coaxes flavor from butternut squash without the laborious step of pre-roasting it in the oven, without a rich stock to muddy the flavors and, most importantly, without wasting your time.

butternut squash
A little caramelization goes a long way flavor-wise for butternut squash.

Browning a handful of the squash right in the pressure cooker will give enough flavor to the risotto without overwhelming it.  Since butternut squash only contains 86% water – closer to the  “magical” potato (80%) than zucchini (95%) or pumpkin (92%)  – there is no need for the measuring-cup-liquid-displacement trick for adding veggies to risotto.  Another way to magnify this squash’s true flavor is to skip the stock – we use water instead.

I’ve only recently begun to regularly make risotto using the electric pressure cooker and I noticed that it comes out a little over-done – that’s because it takes longer for the cooker to lose pressure (all the while still cooking the risotto).  So,  don’t be confused when you see that I recommend a shorter electric pressure cooking time in this recipe than stovetop.

This is pretty much how my family eats this risotto, but if you would like to make it more decadent for company or a special occasion,  mix-in two tablespoons of butter or heavy cream right before serving.

Pressure Cooker Accessories Pr. Cook Time Pr. Level Open
6 L or larger none 5-6 min. High(2) Normal

4.6 from 9 reviews
Butternut Squash & Sage Risotto - pressure cooker recipe
Nutritional Information
(per serving)
  • Serves: serves 4-6
  • Serving size: ⅙th (about 1 cup)
  • Calories: 311.9
  • TOTAL Fat: 5.0g
  • TOTAL Carbs: 61.2g
  • Sugar Carbs: 0.4g
  • Sodium: 784.9mg
  • Fiber Carbs: 3.9g
  • Protein: 5.7g
  • Cholesterol: 0.0mg
Recipe type: pressure cooker
Cuisine: Italian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
If you wish to substitute the butternut squash with pumpkin, add the un-sauteed cubes of pumpkin in the measuring cup/pitcher before measuring the water (details here).
  • 1 2-3 pound (1-1.5k) butternut squash (or 4 cups, 750g, of diced squash)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 sprigs sage, leaves removed
  • 4 garlic cloves, whole
  • 2 cups (360g) arborio rice
  • ¼ cup (75ml) white wine
  • 4 cups (1L) water
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg, freshly ground
  1. Slice the squash in half and peel with a potato peeler. Using a spoon scoop out the seeds and discard (or save to roast later). Slice the squash in ¾" pieces.
  2. Measure out 4 cups (1L pitcher) of cubes and put any extra in the freezer to use for your next recipe - no winging it, we need to keep careful track of the liquid that goes into the pressure cooker.
  3. Add the olive oil the pre-heated pressure cooker and sprinkle in the sage leaves and garlic cloves. Remove a few of the sage leaves when start to look polka-dotted (they are crispy) to use as garnish and set them aside on a paper towel.
  4. Remove the garlic cloves when they are golden and set aside.
  5. Add just enough squash cubes to cover the base of the cooker, and coat them with the sage, and olive oil.
  6. Leave the cubes undisturbed for about 4 minutes while one side of the cubes browns and caramelizes.
  7. Push the squash aside and add the rice and toast it for a couple of minutes.
  8. Splash with wine and let it evaporate completely then add the rest of the squash cubes, toasted garlic cloves, water and salt - mix them well.
  9. Close and lock the lid of the pressure cooker.
  10. For electric pressure cookers: Cook for 5 minutes at high pressure.
    For stove top pressure cookers: Turn the heat up to high and when the cooker indicates it has reached high pressure, lower to the heat to maintain it and begin counting 6 minutes pressure cooking time.
  11. When time is up, open the cooker by releasing the pressure through the valve.
  12. Mix well and serve each dish with a fresh dusting of nutmeg and reserved fried sage leaves.

Brevile Fast Slow Pro

Butternut Squash

Butternut Squash Risotto pressure cooker recipe

Pressure Cooker Risotto - Butternut Squash, Sage & Nutmeg

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  1. Hi, I love this recipe and make it regularly for my family. Question: if I use half butternut squash and half sweet potato cubes, do I need to adjust the water amount?

    Thank you,

    1. Hi Iris, I’ve substituted sweet potatoes before without any changes and it turned out great. I double-checked the water content of each on the nutritional database and it’s very close – Sweet Potatoes (76%), Butternut Squash (86%).



  2. Hi, I would like to try this before making it for company – I haven’t had much success doing risotto in an Instant Pot. Do you think it’s possible to halve the quantities?

    1. Absolutely, you can slice this recipe in half right down the middle for all of the ingredients – the cooking time remains the same. ; )



  3. I have some frozen butternut squash. Would that be ok to use?

    1. Absolutely, don’t be alarmed if the cooker takes a little longer to reach pressure. That’s normal with frozen food.



    2. Did you try it with frozen butternut squash? How did it turn out? Thanks!

      1. You can use frozen, the cooker will just take longer to reach pressure but no other changes need to be made. Enjoy!



  4. I want to make this in my instapot. Any suggestions

    1. You can follow the same instructions as for the Breville, just use “Manual” or “Pressure Cook” mode (depends on the Instant Pot model).



  5. Hi Laura – I’d like to do a large quantity of this in my 10qt pressure cooker. Do you see any problem with increasing quantities (4 – 5 times?), provided it all fits within the ⅔ mark of my pressure cooker?

    1. Allan, Arborio rice can easily overcook. So the extra time it takes for a fuller cooker to come to pressure will add additional pressure cooking time.

      I have a slightly complex method to adjust for this. Carefully track how much time the cooker takes to come to pressure. For every two minutes over 10 subtract one from the cooking time. So, let’s say the cooker takes 12 minutes to reach pressure: subtract 1 minute from the recommended pressure cooking time. If it takes 14, subtract two and so-on.

      Sorry… I know it’s a little complicated BUT it will get you risotto of the perfect texture.



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