Chicken and Chorizo Risotto

Paella is the freekin bomb, isn’t it!? During the warmer months, we love any excuse to get out the outdoor paella burner and cook up a big, throw-in-all-the-seafood, Paella. It’s a Summer ritual… Pimms and Paella. Get on board! It’s a thing! My sister always talks about how she makes a mean chicken and chorizo risotto or paella risotto if you will. While the idea was always tempting it was always a case of, can it really be as good as a big bowl of paella? Well, it’s now settled. It totally IS as good and I’m obsessed!

a white pan full of chicken and chorizo risotto with a check linen tea towel tied around the handle.

Here’s why you are going to love this easy chorizo risotto

Chicken and chorizo… It’s like the BEST food flavour combo ever! If you love It as much as I do you might like my One-pan chicken and chorizo orzo bake

I love to cook most nights of the week, and creamy chorizo chicken risotto is a cracking mid-week dinner option. If I’m short on time and don’t want to stand in the kitchen stirring the whole time, I just cook the risotto in my Magimix Cook Expert and it does all the stirring for me.

The whole family will love this dinner. There’s no heat but tons of flavour. AND you can easily make so many substitutions to suit everyone. Winner winner chicken risotto dinner!

The ingredients you need to get started

  • Skinless chicken thighs – approx. 2-3 average-size fillets

  • Chorizo. Isn’t chicken and chorizo just a match made in heaven? I use mild chorizo to keep this risotto family-friendly. Want to spice it up a bit? Substitute the mild chorizo for a hot one!

  • Vegetables – brown onion, garlic cloves, frozen peas, English spinach, canned tomatoes.

  • Sweet smoked paprika – there are a lot of paprikas on the market. I always look for authentic Spanish sweet smoked paprika. This one is my go-to. It’s stone ground after being smoked for 15 days. The flavour and depth that it brings to your cooking is amazing. I seriously can’t live without this stuff!

  • Saffron threads

  • White wine – Sometimes I have a bottle of wine open specifically for cooking, sometimes it’s a matter of what I’m drinking. I generally cook with chardonnay, sav blanc, or pinot gris and tend to shy away from the sweeter white wines.

  • Chicken broth or stock. In this case, I had heaps of my homemade pressure cooker chicken stock in the freezer.

  • Freshly grated Grana Padano or Reggiano parmesan cheese.


  • Carnaroli or Arborio rice. Both of these types of rice are known as risotto rice and can absorb up to three times their liquid while still holding their shape.

  • Olive oil

The details – how to make this creamy chorizo risotto

  1. In a pot on medium heat, bring the stock to a simmer. Turn off the heat and pop aside.


  2. In a shallow pan, saute the onions in the olive oil until translucent


  3. Add the garlic and saute for 30 seconds until fragrant.


  4. Increase the heat to medium and add the chicken pieces. and gently brown.


  5. Add the chorizo and saute for a couple of minutes.


  6. Add the paprika, saffron, canned tomatoes, and rice. Stir through to combine all the ingredients.


  7. Add the wine and cook until the wine has nearly all evaporated.


  8. Add a cup of the hot stock, stirring continuously. Continue stirring until all of the stock has been absorbed by the rice. Continue adding the stock (and still stirring) one cup at a time making sure each cup is absorbed before adding another. When 75% of the stock has been used, add the frozen peas and stir through the risotto.


  9. Once the rice is al dente, (normally around 20 minutes of cooking time), remove it from the heat. Add the Parmesan and English spinach and stir through.


  10. Season with sea salt and freshly ground pepper.

Equipment

I always cook risotto in my Le Creuset 30cm shallow casserole. Remember, If you are using an enamel cast iron pan, always add the oil prior to heating on top of the stove. And always let the pot heat up on a low heat as opposed to blasting it on a high heat and causing thermal shock to your cookware. Bonus, these are the BEST cooking vessels around when you want to do the cooking and serving in the one dish.

Let’s take this up a notch…

How about we take this chicken chorizo risotto recipe and add some peeled green prawns (at step 8 with the peas) and turn this into a chicken, prawn, and chorizo risotto? Or Prawns and mussels? Or prawns, mussels, and squid tubes? A few additions make an easy (and delicious) seafood, Spanish style risotto.

As risotto can basically be a meal on it’s own, Its perfectly acceptable to to serve any sides alongside it. However, If you’re looking to amp it up a little, try adding a simple caprese salad and maybe a baguette.

Do you have to use arborio rice for risotto?

Risottos are traditionally made from Italian-grown arborio or carnaroli rice. Because they hold their shape while still absorbing liquid and the creamy texture it creates when making risotto. While you could use a different rice, every rice has different characteristics, therefore you won’t get the same result.

What is the difference between risotto and paella?

Generally speaking, risotto is the creamier, more liquid version of paella with parmesan. This all comes down to the rice used. Arborio rice becomes creamy when liquid is added resulting in that silky risotto texture that we all love. Paella is made with Calasparra rice (native to Spain) which can absorb a huge amount of liquid while still retaining its shape with none of the creaminess.

Have leftovers?

Once cooled, pop into an airtight container for your lunch tomorrow! All you have to do is reheat your Spanish risotto it in the microwave or pop it into a frypan on the stove (Both with a little water). Warm it up by incorporating the water into the risotto and mixing it through and topping it with grated parmesan.

Here are a few more dinner recipes you might like…

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a white pan of chicken and chorizo risotto with a check linen towel tied around the handle

Chicken and Chorizo Risotto

  • Author: Emma Lee
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 2 1x
  • Category: dinner
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian

Description

The whole family will love this chicken and chorizo risotto. There’s no heat but tons of flavour. Winner winner chicken risotto dinner!


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 200g chicken thighs cut into 3cm cubes
  • 1 chorizo sausage, de-skinned and torn up/crumbled into small pieces
  • 1 tsp sweet smoked paprika
  • a pinch saffron
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 1 c white wine
  • 200g canned tomatoes
  • 750ml chicken stock
  • 3/4 c frozen peas
  • 100g grated parmesan – grana padano or reggiano
  • 1 cup English spinach
  • sea salt flakes and freshly ground pepper to season

Instructions

  1. In a pot on medium heat, bring the stock to a simmer. Turn off the heat and pop aside.
  2. In a shallow pan, saute the onions in the olive oil until translucent
  3. Add the garlic and saute for 30 seconds until fragrant.
  4. Increase the heat to medium and add the chicken pieces. and gently brown.
  5. Add the chorizo and saute for a couple of minutes.
  6. Add the paprika, saffron, and rice. Stir through to combine all the ingredients.
  7. Add the wine and cook until the wine has nearly all evaporated. 
  8. Add the canned tomatoes and a cup of the hot stock, stirring continuously. Continue stirring until all of the stock has been absorbed by the rice. Continue adding the stock (and still stirring) one cup at a time making sure each cup is absorbed before adding another. When 75% of the stock has been used, add the frozen peas and stir through the risotto.
  9. Once the rice is al dente, (normally around 20 minutes of cooking time), remove it from the heat. Add the Parmesan and English spinach and stir through.
  10. Season with sea salt and freshly ground pepper.


Keywords: mid-week dinner, risotto, Italian

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