Instant Pot Butternut Squash Risotto Recipe

Butternut squash and risotto are the perfect fall pairing, but if your arm is not up for the near-constant stirring that making risotto on the stove requires, this Instant Pot butternut squash risotto from nutritionist and recipe developer Hayley MacLean is just what you're looking for. This recipe is made with all the same ingredients and indulgent taste that you'd expect from risotto, but it comes together in only 35 minutes. More importantly, it's absolutely delicious. 

"My favorite thing about this recipe is how cozy and comforting it is, especially during this cooler time of the year," MacLean says. "The flavor of the butternut squash with sage and a hint of nutmeg is so reminiscent of the fall, and the Parmesan cheese and fresh parsley just bring it over the top."

For this recipe, you'll need an Instant Pot which is a brand of electric pressure cookers. Unlike older pressure cookers that were often hard to control and posed real safety risks, the Instant Pot is far more user-friendly. If you don't have an Instant Pot, you can make this in a slow cooker, but it will take three hours instead of 35 minutes. "If [you're] making it in a slow cooker, make sure to give yourself ample cooking time," MacLean says.

Gather your ingredients for this Instant Pot butternut squash risotto

For this recipe, you'll need arborio rice, the specific type of grain used to make risotto. Risotto's creamy texture comes from the rice's proportionally high starch content, Serious Eats explains. You'll also need olive oil, butter, minced garlic, fresh sage, chicken broth, butternut squash, salt, white pepper, ground nutmeg, Parmesan cheese, and chopped fresh parsley.

Additionally, half a cup of chopped shallots is added to the pot. Why use shallots instead of regular onions? "I love the mild, slightly sweet flavor of shallots as opposed to onions in this recipe," says MacLean. "They highlight the sweet butternut squash so well, and provide a great 'onion-y' flavor without having too much of a bite."

This recipe also calls for dry white wine. If you don't have any wine on hand or would prefer not to cook with alcohol, MacLean suggests using white grape juice, apple cider vinegar, or just adding more chicken broth.

Start by cooking the rice

Set the Instant Pot to "Sauté" and add the oil and butter to the pot. Heat until the butter and oil begin to shimmer. Add the shallots and cook them for a couple of minutes until they start to soften. Add the garlic and sage and continue to cook for another minute. Add the rice to the pot, stirring to coat it with the other ingredients. Cook until the rice begins to turn opaque and smells nutty. Then, add the white wine, stirring until most of the liquid is absorbed, which should take another two minutes. Add the chicken broth, nutmeg, salt, white pepper, and butternut squash and stir to combine.

Once all the ingredients are in, put the Instant Pot to work

Switch the Instant Pot to the "Pressure Cook" setting and close and lock the lid. Pressure cook the ingredients on high for six minutes. When the six minutes are up, carefully turn the venting knob from the "Sealing" to "Venting" position and make sure that the Instant Pot is pointing away from kitchen cabinets and your face. If you're feeling a little nervous about doing this, you can use kitchen tongs or a pair of oven mitts. This will depressurize the Instant Pot quickly, and the lid will open once the pressure is low enough for it to do so safely.

Serve the butternut squash risotto

After the Instant Pot lid has opened, stir in the Parmesan cheese and let the risotto sit uncovered for five to ten minutes to thicken. And that's it! Your butternut squash risotto is done, and your stirring arm hopefully doesn't feel like it just went to the gym. Serve right away with fresh chopped parsley and extra sage. The dry white wine that went into the risotto would also pair well with this dish. Whether you choose to pair this dish with a Sauvignon Blanc or a glass of water, it's going to taste absolutely delicious. 

Instant Pot Butternut Squash Risotto Recipe
5 from 22 ratings
This tasty Instant Pot butternut squash risotto brings all the flavor minus a lengthy stirring process. Warm up in the cooler months with this satisfying dish.
Prep Time
Cook Time
bowl of butternut squash risotto
Total time: 30 minutes
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • ½ cup shallots, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh sage, chopped (plus more for serving)
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 2 ½ cups chicken broth
  • 2 heaping cups butternut squash, chopped to ¼-inch pieces
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon white pepper
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ⅓ cup grated Parmesan cheese
Optional Ingredients
  • chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
  1. Set the Instant Pot to "Sauté" on medium.
  2. Add the olive oil and butter, and heat to a shimmer.
  3. Add the shallots and cook until they begin to soften about 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Add the garlic and sage and continue to cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  5. Add the rice, stirring to coat, and cook until the rice begins to turn opaque and smell nutty.
  6. Add the white wine and cook for about 2 minutes, stirring until most of the liquid is absorbed.
  7. Add the broth, butternut squash, salt, white pepper, and nutmeg, and stir to combine.
  8. Turn the Instant Pot to "Pressure Cook" and close and lock the lid.
  9. Pressure cook on high for 6 minutes.
  10. Turn the Instant Pot steam release handle from sealing to venting to manually release the pressure.
  11. Remove the lid and stir in the Parmesan cheese.
  12. Let the risotto sit for 5 to 10 minutes uncovered to thicken.
  13. Serve immediately, garnished with fresh chopped parsley and extra sage.
Calories per Serving 300
Total Fat 10.2 g
Saturated Fat 3.7 g
Trans Fat 0.1 g
Cholesterol 13.7 mg
Total Carbohydrates 40.0 g
Dietary Fiber 2.9 g
Total Sugars 4.0 g
Sodium 456.1 mg
Protein 8.8 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
Rate this recipe