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Pumpkin risotto in a serving bowl with a spoon.

Vegan Pumpkin Risotto

  • Author: Elena Contis
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 5 servings 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


Rich, sumptuous, and exquisitely elegant, this Vegan Pumpkin Risotto recipe is certain to impress. Made with just 12 ingredients (about half of which I’d bet you already have on hand) and ready in just an hour, this vegan risotto is an ideal entrée for any fall occasion.


  • 1 head of garlic
  • 2 tablespoons vegan butter
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 1/2 pound fresh pumpkin or butternut squash, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1 cup white wine*
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups arborio rice
  • 5 cups vegetable stock
  • Optional: 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • Optional: 3/4 cup shredded vegan parmesan cheese
  • Optional: 3 tablespoons nutritional yeast


  1. Roast the Garlic*: Preheat your oven to 375°F. Slice off the top of a whole head of garlic and place in aluminum foil with the exposed top face up. Drizzle with a little olive oil and a sprinkle of salt, then wrap the foil around the garlic so it is completely covered. Place the garlic in a small ramekin and bake for 50 minutes (it should be golden brown and tender). Open the foil to allow the garlic to cool, then squeeze the garlic head to release the roasted garlic and throw away the skin. Set aside.
  2. Sauté the Aromatics: Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onions and pumpkin and sauté, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent and the pumpkin is tender (about 10 minutes).
  3. Deglaze the Pan: Add the white wine, nutmeg, pepper, and salt to the pan and scrape off anything that’s stuck to the bottom of the pan. Continue to simmer for about 5 minutes until most of the liquid has cooked off.
  4. Make the Pumpkin Puree: If you want to make this a one-pot meal, add the roasted garlic to the pan and mash the onions and pumpkins until you have your desired consistency. If you want a super smooth and creamy risotto, blend the roasted garlic with the onions and pumpkin and 1/2 cup of water in a blender and pour it back into the pan.
  5. Cook the Rice: Add the rice along with 1 cup of vegetable stock to the pan with the pumpkin puree. Reduce the heat to medium-low and stir consistently until the rice absorbs the liquid. Continue adding the stock 1 cup at a time, continually stirring, until the rice is cooked through (this process should take about 30 minutes). You might find you’ll not need to add all of the stock or if your rice is still not cooked through continue adding more stock 1/2 cup at a time.
  6. Add the Finishing Touches: Once the rice is cooked through, turn off the heat. Stir in the balsamic vinegar, parmesan, and nutritional yeast, and adjust any flavors to your preference.
  7. Serve: Serve immediately garnished with more cheese, and sage or parsley. Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.


White wine is a classic addition to risotto, but if you don’t want to use alcohol use 1 extra cup of vegetable broth instead.

If you know ahead of time that you’ll be making this dish, you can roast the garlic and keep it in your refrigerator for up to 5 days.

  • Prep Time: 10 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 Minutes
  • Category: Entree
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian


  • Serving Size: 1 heaping scoopful
  • Calories: 388
  • Sugar: 3.7g
  • Sodium: 1239mg
  • Fat: 7g
  • Saturated Fat: 3.4g
  • Carbohydrates: 69.5g
  • Fiber: 2.9g
  • Protein: 6g
  • Cholesterol: 0mg

Keywords: vegan Thanksgiving, pumpkin, onion, roasted garlic, holiday

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