I’m literally typing this and eating at the same time! You know it’s good when you can’t even type because you’re stuffing your face – lol. Annnnnd, it’s VEGAN!

Vegan Caramelized Leek & Butternut Squash Risotto
1/2 cup of diced onion
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup of leeks, sliced
2 tablespoons of olive oil
3 cups of arborio rice
3 cups of butternut squash
About 6-8 cups of vegetable broth
1 cup of white wine – I used Pinot Grigio
1/2 teaspoon of dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon of dried basil
1 teaspoon of granulated garlic
1/2 teaspoon of black pepper
Kosher salt, to taste
About 3/4 cup of vegan half and half
1 1/2 tablespoons of vegan butter

Start by heating a large pot. Then, saute the onion, garlic, and leeks in olive oil until the leeks are really tender. Do this on medium heat – not too high. Once the leeks are tender, add in the arborio rice. You can turn the heat up a bit. Toast the rice in the oil for about 2 minutes. Stir well every 20 seconds or so to make sure nothing sticks or burns. It’s a good idea to have you wine and stock ready because this will go quickly.

When the rice has toasted for about 2 minutes, add in the white wine and stir. Once the wine cooks out, add in about a cup or so of stock at a time and stir. While you’re adding in the stock, also add in the butternut squash and let it start to cook. Around the 4th or 5th time of adding in the stock, throw in the rest of the seasonings – dried thyme, dried basil, granulated garlic, and black pepper. Keep some salt on hand in case you need to add a bit. I found that I needed to add some because I used a lower sodium vegetable stock.

After the rice has cooked and is tender, and so is the squash, finish by adding in the half and half and the vegan butter. Serve immediately.

Side note – I made a quick salad with a lovely tarragon vinaigrette. It was simple. I just threw in 2 teaspoons of tarragon vinegar (any vinegar will work), 1 tablespoon of sugar, 1/2 teaspoon of Dijon mustard, a pinch of salt, a pinch of pepper, and 1/4 cup of olive oil into a container with a lid. I shook it until all of the ingredients were combined and drizzled it over my salad!