Lemon Risotto with Caramelized Onions, Sausage and Bitter Greens

Lemon Risotto with Caramelized Onions, Sausage and Bitter Greens

I made this a long time ago. So long ago that I completely forgot about it until stumbling upon the (disappointing) photos recently. Life got in the way of posting and it’s been sitting, waiting to be shared with you! I made this in early June, just when spring was at it’s best. We ate it on our beautiful little patio with the warm California breeze. If we were wine drinkers a nice glass of Cabernet Sauvignon would have paired beautifully with light dish.

Lemon Risotto with Caramelized Onions
Lemon Risotto with Caramelized Onions

I’ve decided that there’s no possible way to make risotto look pretty, especially at night without the glory of the sun. I wish these photos looked as delightful as this risotto tastes, but you’ll just have to take my word for it: this risotto is awesome. It’s fairly simple to make as far as risotto is concerned and the flavors marry very well together. I went a little overboard on the lemon, but have adjusted the recipe just for you.


  • 4 cups chicken broth;
  • ½ cup water;
  • 2 tbsp olive oil;
  • 3 cups onion, chopped;
  • 2 tbsp sugar;
  • 8 oz sweet turkey sausage;
  • ¼ cup shallots;
  • 1 cup Arborio rice (risotto);
  • ⅓ cup white wine;
  • 2½ cups arugula leaves;
  • ⅓ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese;
  • 1½ tsp grated lemon rind.


  1. Bring broth and water to a simmer in saucepan and keep warm over low heat (don’t let it boil!)
  2. Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion and sugar and sautee until onion is golden, about 5-7 minutes. Remove onions and place in a small bowl, set aside.
  3. Take sausage out of casings and add to saucepan, sautéing until browned (about 3-4 minutes).
  4. Add shallots and sauté 2 minutes. Add rice, stir to combine then add wine. Cook until liquid is nearly absorbed, stirring constantly.
  5. Stir in 2 cup hot broth, cook 2 minutes or until liquid is mostly absorbed. Add remaining broth in 1/2 cup increments, stirring constantly until all liquid is absorbed between each addition. This total process should take about 20 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat, stir in onion, arugula, Parmesan cheese and lemon rind. Serve with warm bread and enjoy!

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