This Butternut Squash Vegan Risotto with Caramelized onions Swiss Chard is a perfect Gluten Free Christmas, Holiday and Thanksgiving Recipe to satisfy all of your friends and family!
I cannot believe Thanksgiving is here. I mean, to be fair to myself, we’ve had a freaking heat wave here so it definitely does not feel like Fall, but here we are. And here I am frantically trying to figure out what I’m going to make for Thanksgiving dinner.
This year, I’ve got a bit of a mixed crowd. I have people who are gluten free and people who are vegetarian, so my stuffing and turkey are both no-nos. I recently shared an amazing recipe for Butternut Squash Stuffed Pasta Shells and today I’m coming back at ya with another squash star – my Butternut Squash Vegan Risotto with Caramelized Onions and Swiss Chard. This stuff is insanely good. I don’t care if you’re normally a dark meat girl or guy, this is going to become your favourite dish on the holiday spread.
How to Make Butternut Squash Vegan Risotto with Caramelized Onions and Swiss Chard
While usually risotto requires a shit ton of butter and cheese (like literally, I once saw a chef put an entire stick of butter in a serving just for me), my Butternut Squash Vegan Risotto gets its cream-factor from pureed cashews and butternut squash.
I also add in lots of big bold cool-weather flavours like caramelized onions, sage, rosemary, ginger and swiss chard. It’s almost too pretty too eat. Almost being the key word here, of course.
Oh, and to make it seem like there’s a little parmesan cheese on top, I dust a little bit of pulverized cashews that I processed into a powder in the food processor or blender.
Risotto does require some patience because someone has to stand around to stir and stir and stir the starch out of the grains, but trust me- every minute you spend in front of that stove is worth it. I suggest you relegate your MIL to do this job – it’s pretty hard to screw up, and it will free you up to fuss about the kitchen getting everything else on the table on time.
This Butternut Squash Vegan Risotto also takes some short cuts from the store like frozen butternut squash so while it’s elegant enough for your holiday party, it is so simple you can pull it off on a weeknight. The best friggin’ weeknight ever.
So tell me, lovelies, what are you guys making for your vegan and gluten free friends for Thanksgiving, Christmas or the holidays?
Have you tried making my Butternut Squash Vegan Risotto? Leave me a comment below!
Butternut Squash Vegan Risotto
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil divided
- 1 onion thinly sliced
- 5 cups low sodium vegetable broth
- 1 tbsp minced sage
- 1 tbsp minced rosemary
- 1 tbsp grated ginger
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 cups Arborio rice
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 1 cup cashews soaked in water in the fridge overnight
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- Pinch nutmeg
- 3 cups frozen butternut squash divided
- 1 1/2 cups swiss chard leaves chiffonade
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Raw cashews processed in a food processor or blender until they reach a coarse powder for garnish
- In a medium pot, add two tablespoons of oil over medium low heat. Add the onion and start to cook slowly until it gets a deep golden brown, about 5-6 minutes. Remove and set aside in a bowl.
- In a small saucepot, add the stock and heat covered over medium low until simmering.
- Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the pot and cook the garlic, ginger, sage and rosemary over medium high heat. Add in the rice and stir until it's well coated in the oil. Reduce the heat to medium low and add in the wine. Stir until the wine has evaporated. Then slowly start to ladle in the broth and stir constantly until all of it is absorbed. You may not use all of the broth, but once you get to 3 1/2- 4 cups, taste it for doneness.
- Thaw out 1 1/2 cups of the squash (you can do this in the microwave, or just let it sit out for a bit).
- While it's bubbling away, add the cashews to a high speed blender and puree until chalky, then add in the milk, thawed squash, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and pepper and puree until very smooth.
- Once the rice is cooked, stir in the cashew cream, along with the remaining frozen squash, chard and cooked caramelized onion. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- To serve, top with pulverized raw cashews, if desired. Enjoy!
Abbey Sharp is a Registered Dietitian (RD), regulated by the Ontario College of Dietitians. She is a mom, YouTuber, Blogger, award winning cookbook author, media coach specializing in food and nutrition influencers, and a frequent contributor to national publications like Healthline and on national broadcast TV shows.