Maple Roasted Butternut Squash Risotto with Bacon and Brown Butter Sage Topping

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Yield: Serves 4



    • 1 lb butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed
    • 2 Tbsp Olive oil
    • 3 Tbsp Maple Syrup
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1/2 tsp pepper
    • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed but still intact
    • 1 medium onion, diced
    • 2 cups arborio rice
    • 2 quarts chicken stock
    • 1 cup dry white wine
    • 1/2 pound bacon, cooked and crumbled (Reserve 2 Tbsp for Sage Topping - see below)
    • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grate
    • 2 Tbsp Maple flakes or grated maple cube
For the Crispy Sage and Bacon Topping:
    • 2 Tbsp butter
    • 1 tsp Maple Syrup
    • 5 sage leaves, chopped
    • 2 Tbsp crumbled crispy bacon (reserved from the 1/2 pound cooked for the risotto)
To Finish the Dish:
  • Olive oil for drizzling


  1. Preheat the oven to 425
  2. Place the butternut squash on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and maple syrup. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss well to coat all evenly. Roast in the oven for 20-30 minutes or until a fork can easily pierce through the squash. Remove from oven and set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, heat 4 quarts (16 cups) chicken stock in a pot until just simmering. Cover and continue to let it simmer.
  4. Heat a large pot over medium high heat. Add enough olive oil to fully coat the bottom of the pan.
  5. Add the onions to the pot and reduce the heat to medium. Season with salt and pepper and saute until they are translucent and softened.
  6. Add the garlic and let it cook for two or three minutes until the garlic just starts to brown.
  7. Add the rice and continue to cook for three or four minutes until the rice is fully coated with the oil and has just started to brown ever so slightly.
  8. Pour in the white wine and stir constantly for a minute or two, until the wine is almost fully evaporated.
  9. Pour a ladle of the stock over the rice. Stir well to make sure that all the rice has lifted off the bottom of the pan. Sip a bit of that white wine (why yes that IS am important step!). Once the liquid has almost fully evaporated in pan, add another ladle full and repeat. Continue this process until all of the stock has been incorporated into the risotto.
  10. Take a taste to insure the rice is tender but still a little firm in the middle. Turn off the heat and stir in the bacon and Parmesan cheese. Add the roasted squash, stir gently to combine with the risotto and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper to taste.
  11. Cover and let rest up to 15 minutes.
  12. While the risotto is resting warm the butter in a saute pan over medium heat. Let this cook for a minute or two just until the butter has started to brown. Add the sage and let cook for a minute until just crispy. Add a tsp of maple syrup to the skillet along with the 2 Tbsp of crumbled bacon bits and stir. Remove from heat and set aside.
  13. Serve by ladling risotto into bowls. Top with a spoonful of the sage and bacon mixture and drizzle with a bit of olive oil over the top to create a truly luscious texture.
  14. Sprinkle with maple flakes or grate maple cube over risotto.  Serve immediately.

Adapted from:  http://www.creative-culinary.com/maple-roasted-butternut-squash-risotto-with-bacon-and-brown-butter-sage-topping/

Dori Ross