Smoked Salmon Risotto with Spinach

Lunch / Dinner

Smoked Salmon Risotto with Spinach

Risotto certainly seems gourmet, but all it requires is a little attention, stirring, and a great recipe — like this one featuring salmon, spinach, and cheese!

Risotto [rih-SAW-toh] is a creamy rice dish from northern Italy known for its unique cooking method: Hot broth is added to rice in increments, allowing it to simmer and absorb before the next addition. To achieve risotto’s characteristic creaminess, it’s essential to use rice that’s very high in starch, such as arborio. As it’s stirred, the sticky starch releases and combines with the broth, creating a velvety sauce.

Be patient throughout the process and pay careful attention to how quickly the broth is absorbing. Toward the end of the cooking time, frequently taste-test the risotto to check for doneness. The grains should be firm and separate — not gritty or mushy. When it’s done, remove the risotto from the heat and stir in the salmon, spinach, and Parmigiano-Reggiano that take the dish to elegant full-meal status.


4 servings

Total Time

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Test Kitchen Tips

Depending on how quickly your rice absorbs the broth, you may or may not use all of it. If you run out, use hot water to finish cooking.

To keep track of how much broth you’ve added, line up 12 nuts (or raisins or candies). Each time you add a ladle of broth, eat one. When the treats are gone, you know you’re done!


Simmer broth in a large saucepan; keep warm over medium-low heat.

Sauté leeks, bell pepper, and garlic in oil in a sauté pan over medium-high heat until leeks soften, 45 minutes.

Stir in rice and sauté until all grains are coated, 23 minutes. Add wine and simmer, stirring constantly, until wine evaporates, 23 minutes.

Add ½ cup hot broth to pan and simmer until completely absorbed. Continue adding broth in ½-cup increments, stirring frequently and adding more broth only after the previous addition is absorbed. Taste rice after 15 minutes; continue cooking until it is firm, but not chalky or chewy in the center. Remove from heat.

Fold in spinach until wilted. Add lemon juice, ½ cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, and chives; season with salt and black pepper. Gently fold in salmon. Garnish risotto with Parmigiano-Reggiano.


Add broth and stir to coat rice. Let the rice sit and bubble before stirring so liquid is absorbed.


When a spatula swiped through the rice leaves a clear trail, it’s ready for the next addition of broth.


To avoid overcooking the risotto, fold in the spinach off heat. The residual heat is enough to wilt it.

Nutritional Facts

Nutritional Facts

Per serving

Calories: 644

% Daily Value*

Total Fat 19g 29%

Saturated Fat 7g 35%

Cholesterol 66mg 22%

Sodium 711mg 29%

Carbs 72g 24%

Fiber 6g 24%

Protein 38g

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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