Pea and Mint Risotto


This rich, cheesy risotto highlights the delicate flavor of peas and is flavored with fresh mint.

Pea and Mint Risotto Recipe

Matt Taylor-Gross / Food Styling by Debbie Wee

Total Time:
40 mins

Patricia Wells, the Paris-based restaurant critic for the International Herald Tribune, is also a prolific cookbook author. She described the inspiration for her book, Vegetable Harvest: "Rather than creating a meal around the fish, the poultry or the meat, I found that I began putting the vegetables first." 

This recipe is a great example of that intention, featuring peas in a bright, springy risotto. With that said, frozen peas make this recipe doable any time of the year. If you would like to use fresh peas, steam them for two minutes before adding them to the risotto. Along with a few shavings of Parmesan cheese and a handful of mint leaves, they make this the perfect dinner for a spring dinner.

Be sure to buy arborio or carnaroli rice to make risotto; these round, short-grained varieties are perfect for risotto. And do not rinse the rice before cooking; you want all the starches on each grain of rice to contribute to the creamy consistency of the final dish. Cooking the risotto slowly, and adding just a cup of stock or broth to the risotto at a time are key to making the best risotto. The stock will absorb into the rice better when it's warm, so be sure to heat it in a separate pot on the stove, so it's the right temperature when you need it.


  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 large garlic clove, halved

  • 1 large shallot, minced

  • 1 1/2 cups arborio rice (10 ounces)

  • 4 1/2 cups chicken stock or low-sodium broth, warmed

  • Salt and freshly ground white pepper

  • One 16-ounce bag frozen baby peas (3 cups), thawed

  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

  • 1 cup finely shredded mint leaves


  1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium. Add garlic and shallot, cover and cook over moderately low heat until softened, about 3 minutes. Add rice and stir over moderately low heat until slightly translucent, about 2 minutes.

  2. Add 1 cup of the warmed chicken stock and cook, stirring, until nearly absorbed. Continue adding stock, about 1 cup at a time, stirring until stock is absorbed before adding more. Cook, stirring, until rice is al dente and suspended in thick, creamy liquid, about 17 minutes total. Season with salt and pepper; discard garlic. Add peas and cook just until heated through. Stir in cheese and mint and serve.

Suggested Pairing

A vibrant white, such as a Pinot Grigio from Napa.

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