Brown Rice and Beet Risotto with Coconut Milk

Risotto, the creamy Italian rice dish, is a simple recipe that, when done right, oozes luxury. In this health-spun version, brown rice replaces the usual Arborio rice, and we’ve added grated raw beets and luscious coconut milk. This is a gorgeous dish that tastes as good as it looks. Get your protein, fiber and antioxidant boost all in one rustic meal, perfect for a chilly winter night with a tall glass of red wine.

Serves: 2 entrees or 4 sides


4 cups vegetable stock
1 cup coconut milk (may use light), plus ½ cup for serving
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 medium shallots, finely chopped (about 1/3 cup)
1 cup long-grain brown rice
¼ cup dry wine (red or white)
2 medium beets, scrubbed, grated
Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish


Combine stock and 1 cup coconut milk in a medium saucepan; keep warm over low heat.

Heat oil in a medium stockpot over medium; add shallots and cook until translucent, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Add rice and cook until lightly toasted and golden, stirring occasionally, about 3 minutes.

Add wine to stockpot; simmer until liquid is almost cooked out, about 1 minute, scraping bottom of pan to deglaze. Add ½ cup of warm stock mixture to stockpot, stirring and allowing it to simmer and cook until almost dry. Keep the heat at enough of a simmer for the liquid to just barely bubble. When the bottom of the stockpot looks almost dry under the rice, add the next ½ cup of stock mixture. Continue adding ½ cup of stock mixture at a time to the rice, stirring and letting it become almost dry before adding the next ½ cup.

When half of the stock mixture has been added (about 3 cups worth), add the grated beets; season to taste. Stir well and continue adding the stock, ½ cup at a time. Keep adding and stirring until all stock has been added. The process will take about 45 minutes in total. The rice will become soft, creamy, and just barely chewy in the middle (al dente).

When all stock has been added, and the rice is creamy and cooked, finish the dish by stirring in ½ cup coconut milk; adjust seasonings to taste. Serve immediately with fresh parsley.

All images by Kimberley Stakal

Follow Kimberley on Twitter @GreenGourmetKim