Lemon Basil Risotto with Sauteed Shrimp

Lemon Basil Shrimp Risotto


  • 1 whole Onion – Finely Diced
  • 4-5 cloves Garlic – Minced
  • 2 cups Arborio Rice
  • 1 cup White Wine (I like Santa Barbara Riesling)
  • 7 cups Vegetable Broth
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 1 whole Lemon – Zested and Juiced
  • Fresh Cracked Pepper to Taste
  • 3 Tablespoons Heavy Cream
  • 18 whole Basil Leaves – Julienned, plus Extra For Serving
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1-1/2 pound Shrimp (I get a bag of frozen jumbo uncooked and deveined)
  • ½ Tsp Smoked Paprika, ¼ Tsp Garlic Powder and Cracked Pepper and Salt to Taste
  • Fresh Grated Parmesan Cheese For Garnish


First, pull out all your pots then chop, measure and prep all your ingredients beforehand.  This saves valuable time and aggravation.  Thaw your shrimp before you begin – I use a large bowl of water and change it out a few times until they are thawed then remove the tail bits.  Place on a paper towel to dry them off a bit then season them with the paprika, garlic powder and pepper and set aside.

In a large pot, heat your broth until it boils then reduce the heat to low to keep simmering.

In a large skillet sauté the garlic and onions until they are slightly caramelized then add the Arborio Rice and cook over medium heat for about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally – be careful not to burn.

Pour in the white wine and stir gently, deglazing the pan and allowing the rice to absorb the liquid. After the wine is mostly absorbed, begin adding the warm broth 1 cup at a time, each time allowing the rice to absorb the liquid.

Every other time you add broth, add a pinch or two of pepper, lemon zest or basil, alternately, stirring occasionally as you go.  After 4 cups of broth have been absorbed, taste the rice.  It should be soft with no crunch core.  If it is still hard in the center, continue adding broth.  Honestly, I have found I need all 7 cups, but still keep tasking it.

After you have added the last cup of broth, melt the butter on high heat in a skillet and sauté the seasoned shrimp until cooked.  When done, add remaining lemon juice to the risotto toward the end of cooking then stir in the heavy cream.  Serve immediately, garnishing with the shrimp, remaining basil, lemon zest and Parmesan cheese on top.


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