Crock Pot Spinach & Basil Brown Rice Risotto

I know I just recently did a Crock Pot recipe, but I’m here today to tell you that Crock Pots aren’t just for soup, y’all. You can seriously make almost anything in them these days. There are tons of resources for Crock Pot recipes that go anywhere from beef and broccoli to tacos. Today, we’ll be making risotto!

I got this recipe, again, from the Better Homes & Gardens “Skinny Slow Cooker” magazine. I got this around a year ago, so I don’t know if it’s still available, but it’s got some great recipes in it!

“Spinach And Basil Brown Rice Risotto,” pg. 117. This is technically intended to be a side, but I ate it as a main dish.

You will need:

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 1 & 1/2 cups uncooked brown rice
  • 1 cup chopped red or green sweet pepper
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 & 1/2 cups water
  • 2 cups packed fresh spinach, coarsely chopped (I only used one cup, two seemed like way too much, but to each their own!)
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup snipped fresh basil
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts or slivered almonds, toasted
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Grated parmesan cheese (optional)
Remember, gather your ingredients first!

Remember, gather your ingredients first!

Start by coating your slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray. Then, add in your rice (uncooked!), sweet pepper, and salt. Pour the water over it and slap on the lid.

Doesn't it just look soo appetizing at this stage?

Doesn’t it just look soo appetizing at this stage?

Cook on low for 4 to 5 hours, or on high for 2 to 2 & 1/2 hours. Now, I think something might be wrong with my Crock Pot, because I had it on high, and it took 4 hours for the rice to become tender. So make sure to check before you take it out!

In the meantime, prepare the rest of your ingredients. I would wait to do this part until around 30 minutes before your cook time is up. All you really have to do here is chop your spinach, snip your basil, and grate the lemon peel. Use a cheese grater!

Then, once your rice and pepper mixture is finished cooking (when the rice is tender), throw in the spinach, basil, nuts, oil, lemon peel, and garlic. Cover again and cook until the spinach is wilted. Add some cheese if you like, and you’re done! This is probably the world’s easiest risotto recipe.

It tastes better than it looks, I promise.

It tastes better than it looks, I promise.

I have to admit that my rice came out pretty mushy, but the flavors were really good, so I’m sure someone with more cooking prowess could make this amazing. Happy crocking!