The Rules Chefs Want You To Follow When Making Risotto

When you're at home in your own kitchen and not out ordering at a restaurant, risotto can seem scary. But you no longer have to be intimidated by this delicious dish! You can make restaurant-quality risotto at home without dreading disaster. Aside from a dash of patience and a little TLC, a few insider tips from chefs will help you conquer your fears and become a risotto-making fiend.

The first step to great risotto is using the right kind of rice. James Beard Award-winning chef Mike Lata says to use short-grain rice to achieve the perfect risotto consistency (via MyRecipes). If any kind of rice was match-made for cooking risotto, it's definitely short-grain rice. There are also a few different kinds of short-grain rice, and choosing the "right" one can make a huge difference in your risotto quality. For Chef Lata, vialone nano, carnaroli, and bomba are the best varieties.

Perfecting the process of cooking risotto

Risotto is typically thick and creamy with a bit of texture coming from the rice. That doesn't mean you should attempt "al dente" rice like you would standard pasta. Try pushing past your comfort zone and cook the rice a little longer than you normally would. Chef Lata says this is the best way to achieve luscious risotto (via MyRecipes).

You also want to hold off from rinsing your rice, as that extra starch can have a big impact on flavor and texture (via And speaking of flavor, experimenting with different kinds of broths can lead to a happy accident of stumbling upon a new favorite method.

Presumably, the hardest part of cooking risotto is the dedication to stirring—but that's the key to it coming out great. With a little patience and elbow grease, you'll soon have smooth and creamy risotto that you can be proud of. Plus, actively stirring will keep pesky rice from sticking to the bottom of your beloved pot.