The Canned Soup Shortcut For Quick And Inexpensive Risotto

Not for the faint of heart nor for those who are in a hurry, making risotto is a time-consuming process that has no shortcuts — or does it? While a classic Parmesan risotto takes about 45 minutes to make, some other versions of risotto can take even longer. In addition to a long list of ingredients, including short-grained rice, vegetable or chicken stock, olive oil, onion, garlic cloves, white wine, herbs, and butter, risotto also requires an ample amount of patience. To make a luscious and smooth risotto, hot broth must be added a little bit at a time while continuously stirring the rice. As each ladle of broth is added to the rice, it softens as the rice absorbs the liquid. Rush this process and the rice will stay hard and the risotto will not have the pleasing texture for which it is known.

But if you don't have the time to slowly nurture rice into mouth-pleasing risotto, don't feel like you have to settle for something else. The good news is the dish is achievable with the help of canned soup.

Speed up the cooking time with creamed soup

Not only can canned soup help to make risotto faster, it also cuts down on the expense of crafting the classic Italian dish. Instead of adding the broth slowly, store-bought chicken broth and condensed cream of mushroom soup can be added at the same time to cook the rice. After bringing to a boil, the heat can be reduced to very low and the rice should be cooked slowly for about 25 minutes or until it absorbs the liquid and the desired texture is achieved. 

Cream of mushroom soup is not the only canned soup option. Also consider using condensed cream of chicken soup for a chicken and mushroom risotto. Top the rice with cooked chicken and fresh herbs for a filling meal. If sticking with cream soups, Campbell's also sells Cream of Cremini & Shiitake Mushroom Soup, Cream of Bacon Soup, Cream of Broccoli Soup, and Cream of Asparagus Soup, among others — all of which complement the traditional flavors of risotto well. 

For an even quicker rice meal, small orzo rice can be used. Once cooked, the risotto can be topped with rotisserie chicken and canned or heated frozen vegetables.

When it comes to risotto, a lack of time doesn't necessarily mean lack of flavor and texture if you have canned soup.