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Lunch / Dinner

Italian Sausage Risotto with Broccoli Rabe

Italian sausage is essentially coarsely ground pork flavored with garlic and fennel seeds. It comes either hot (with red pepper flakes) or sweet (without). And it isn’t just for pizza anymore.

You’ll find it’s equally at home in the classic rice dish, risotto, where the sausage pairs naturally with broccoli rabe. The sweetness of the fennel seeds in the sausage along with red pepper flakes are the perfect foil to the bitter, leafy green vegetable.


4 servings

Total Time

about 1¼ hours

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For the broth, boil broth in a saucepan. Blanch broccoli rabe in broth, in batches, 30 seconds per batch, then plunge into ice water; drain and spin dry. Keep broth hot over low heat.

For the risotto, brown sausage in oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat until cooked through, about 5 minutes; transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate.

Sweat onions, garlic, oregano, and pepper flakes in drippings until softened, about 3 minutes.

Stir in rice to coat in drippings. Deglaze pan with wine; stirring constantly until completely absorbed, about 2 minutes. Add broth in ½-cup increments; simmer and stir frequently until each addition is almost completely absorbed before adding the next, and until rice is al dente, about 45 minutes total. (There will likely be some remaining broth.)

Stir in ½ cup Parmesan, sausage, and broccoli rabe until heated through. Add additional broth to reach desired consistency. Top servings with additional Parmesan.


Blanch broccoli rabe in the broth just long enough to wilt it and to keep it a vibrant green color.


Add more broth to the risotto when you swipe through the rice and broth doesn’t flood the space.

Nutritional Facts

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