Carmelized Onion Fontina Risotto

Monica H


Risotto is like a newborn baby; it requires constant attention. If you wander away from it for 1 minute, it will cry and be naughty and will produce for you a horrible mess. The difference is that you shouldn't lose sleep over a won't be too difficult with a little practice and patience!

Give it love and attention to detail and it will love you back.

Not always does this dish work out for me, so here are some helpful tips I have picked up along the way:
- Its OK not to stir super vigorously, like you may see chefs do on cooking shows like Hell's Kitchen. This is what I thought was required at first, but the dish never seemed to get done because the rice was never given a chance to cook! So stir often like every 3-4 seconds, but not all the time.
- In the end, don't substitute oil for the butter because the rice won't congeal together in the way risotto is supposed to.
- Eat right away.
- Leftovers: they harden to a hot mess. To easily re-heat risotto, add a few spoons to a saucepan and turn on low heat. Add a little milk. Slowly separate risotto with spoon, using milk for moisture to help break it apart. Heat on low for about 10 minutes until warmed, adding more milk if needed, so as to not burn the risotto to the pan.
- During the leftover part, its nice to experiment with throwing different spices in there, so for the next time you make risotto, maybe there is a different flavor you can experiment with!


★★★★★ 1 vote

10 Min
30 Min


  • 2 c
    arborio rice
  • 6 c
    vegetable stock
  • 1 Tbsp
    olive oil
  • 1 c
    yellow onion, finely diced
  • 1 Tbsp
    butter, unsalted
  • 1 1/2 tsp
    brown sugar
  • 1/4 c
    heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tsp
  • 1/4 c
    parmesan cheese
  • 1 1/2 c
    fontina cheese, grated
  • ·
    dashes of salt and pepper
  • ·
    fresh basil

How to Make Carmelized Onion Fontina Risotto


  1. Get all your ingredients, utensils, etc., ready beforehand; lay them out close to you while you are cooking, so in the middle of making the dish, you don't have to walk away from it.
  2. Put saffron to a bowl, and add half a ladle of warm stock to it. Set aside.
  3. Warm up your stock. Keep it on a low heat (don't boil) closeby.
  4. Sautee onions in olive oil, 1 tsp salt and brown sugar. Onions should be translucent in 7-10 minutes.
  5. Add one ladel of stock to the onions. Let evaporate.
  6. Add both cups of rice. Stir well to incorporate with the onions and the oil. Let the rice toast in pan for about 2-3 minutes, stirring often.
  7. Add 1-2 ladels of stock to the rice, stir and keep over medium heat. When absorbed, add more stock, stirring often.
  8. Repeat this process of (adding stock, stiring, when absorbed adding more stock, etc.), until rice is tender. Taste it the whole time through, checking for tenderness. Also, if its bland, add dashes of salt during this time.
  9. Note: if you run out of stock and your rice is still not done (this has happened to me!), then OK to use lukewarm water - just don't use cold water or cold milk because it will shock the rice - add the water like you would the stock, until rice is done.
  10. When rice is done, stir in saffron that was sitting to the side.
  11. Stir in the butter, cream and cheeses. Turn off heat. Stir well to incorporate. Let rice stand, covered, for no more than one minute before serving. Garnish with chopped basil.

Printable Recipe Card

About Carmelized Onion Fontina Risotto

Regional Style: Italian
Dietary Needs: Vegetarian
Other Tag: For Kids
Hashtags: #rice, #cheese, #rissoto

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