Brussels sprout risotto with crispy sage


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Cooking sprouts in this amount of butter is not for the faint of heart – but honestly, they are worth it! Charred, crispy leaves on the outside and meltingly gooey on the inside, it also gives you the added bonus of some nutty brown butter to fold through the risotto at the end. Adding the shredded raw sprouts before serving provides a needed freshness and a nice touch of colour too.

Remember to use an animal rennet-free alternative to Parmesan if catering for vegetarians.




  • 140g of butter
  • 600g of sprouts, any discoloured outer leaves discarded
  • 2 sprigs of sage
  • 1 tbsp of vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 300g of carnaroli risotto rice, or arborio rice
  • 200ml of white wine
  • 600ml of stock, chicken or vegetable depending on preference, warmed in a pan
  • 50g of Parmesan, finely grated (or a vegetarian alternative)
  • salt
  • pepper
Take 400g of the sprouts and chop in half. Place 100g of the butter and melt in a large frying pan. Once the butter is foaming, add the halved sprouts and the sage leaves and turn down to a medium-low heat. Leave them to slowly cook in the foaming butter as you prepare the risotto, stirring occasionally
Finely slice the remaining raw sprouts and set aside
Heat the vegetable oil in a large pan and add the onion and garlic with a pinch of salt. Sweat until soft and translucent (about 5 minutes)
Add the rice and stir for a few minutes until starting to toast. At this stage add the white wine and cook (still stirring) until it has all been absorbed by the rice
Add ladles of warm stock one by one, each time letting the rice absorb the stock before adding the next. Stir regularly to release the starch from the rice, which is what gives you a creamy risotto
Don't worry if the sprouts start to look quite dark in colour as they cook – they should be gnarled and crisp on the outside and buttery and soft on the inside
Keep tasting the rice to check if it is cooked – you may not need all of the stock. When you are happy with the rice, fold in the shredded raw sprouts and beat in the remaining 40g of butter with the Parmesan. Carefully fold in the buttery sprouts and crispy sage along with any remaining toasty brown butter, then cover with a lid and take off the heat
Leave the risotto to rest for 5 minutes before dishing up
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