Vegetarian Marinara Risotto

Marinara Risotto

Vegetarian Marinara Risotto
Ready in 30 minutes – the marinara simmers while the rice cooks.

This is a soul satisfying, yet simple 30 minute meal.  For leftovers, crisp the rice/lentil mixture in a pan with a little olive oil.

Foodie note:  Make sure to use red lentils for this recipe, they only take 20 minutes to cook and you want them to mostly breakdown into the rice.

Serves 2


 ½ cup red lentils

½ cup Arborio rice

½ cup white wine (any variety)

1 cup water

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 (15oz) can tomatoes – stewed, crushed or diced, preferably without salt

1 garlic clove, minced

½ teaspoon dried oregano

¼ teaspoon salt

1/3 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano or pecorino + more to serve

2 tablespoons fresh basil (optional)


  1. Rinse lentils, pour into a medium sized sauce pan.  Add rice, wine, water and 1 tablespoon olive oil; stir.  Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and put the lid on.  Cook covered for 20 minutes. Don’t touch the lid – remove from heat and leave to steam for 10 minutes.
  2. While rice/lentils cook, make the marinara sauce.  Put 1 tablespoon olive oil in a small sauce pan with the garlic and heat over medium/low heat until the garlic becomes fragrant, about 1 minute.  Carefully add tomatoes (they might sputter) and oregano, bring to a boil, then drop to a low simmer and partially cover the pot. Cook for at least 10 minutes or until the rice is done. Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed.
  3. Once the rice is done steaming, stir in salt and grated cheese.  Portion into three bowls. Top with sauce, more grated cheese and a pinch of fresh basil, if you have it.  Enjoy!