This date night roasted butternut squash risotto is perfect for a special occasion or dinner for two. It’s simple to make but tastes mega fancy!

date night roasted butternut squash risotto

Some nights are all about quick and easy dinners like weeknight lentil soup or quinoa chili. And other nights are for spending a little more time and care to prepare dinner and eating something that makes you feel pretty damn fancy.

Vegan butternut squash risotto:

This date night roasted butternut squash risotto is one of those dishes. 

It starts with roasted butternut squash that gets pureed and added to the pan with our short grain brown rice, white wine, and veggie broth and cooked down until tender and creamy. Yeah. FANCY. 

I call this one date night roasted butternut squash risotto because I think it seriously makes the perfect dish to cook on a date night. Whether you’re cooking with someone or cooking for someone, this is the recipe for you!

That being said, you can also cook this up on any night, and can definitely still make it with no date night required. (Like the time I made it and enjoyed it by myself on a Tuesday night.)

What to Serve with Butternut Squash Risotto

I like to serve the risotto as the main dish.

If this is what you are planning to do, then I recommend pairing it will a side salad and perhaps a soup. I would recommend using citrus and acidic flavours in the salad because this will help cut the richness of the risotto. As for the soup, keep it on the lighter side. A nice tomato bisque or this vegan beet soup would work great!

If you are looking to serve a more traditional Italian dinner, this risotto would probably be considered more of the first course or “primo piatto”.

Feel free to combine this with an eggplant parmesan, or for my meat-eaters, saltimbocca or fish dish. That’s what makes this recipe so great – it can be the main attraction or not, either way, it is delicious and impressive!

Tips for making this recipe perfectly

  • Use arborio rice or any short-grain rice. For this recipe, I use short grain brown rice to keeps things extra healthy, but technically any short grain rice will work. (Though I’d recommend sticking to the short grain brown rice as in the recipe, or to use arborio rice.) 
  • Adding a splash of white wine to the recipe gives a little kick of acidity to the risotto. If you don’t have any white wine, you can add a tablespoon of lemon juice instead. 
  • One of the key secrets to making a perfect risotto is patience. That’s right! No quick tricks here my friends. So go ahead and use this as an excuse to pour yourself a glass of wine, put on your favourite playlist on Spotify, and just ENJOY the process of making some risotto! Can you say #selfcare?

Now if you’re wondering, can risotto be reheated? The answer is YES, YES IT CAN!

But do yourself a favour and reheat your risotto in a pan rather than a microwave. Add a little extra splash of water or vegetable broth in the pan along with the risotto to help loosen it up and get that nice smooth & creamy texture. 

If you’re feeling a little intimidated about the process of making risotto, tasty has a great how-to video you can watch here!

easy roasted butternut squash risotto in bowl

Other great date night recipes to try

If you tried this date night roasted butternut squash risotto or any other recipe on the blog let me know how you liked it by leaving a comment/rating below! Be sure to follow along on PinterestInstagram and Facebook for even more deliciousness!

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close up of creamy butternut squash risotto in bowl with spoon

Date night roasted butternut squash risotto

  • Author: Jess
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 24 servings 1x
  • Category: Main
  • Method: Cook
  • Cuisine: Italian


The perfect dinner to make for a date night or dinner with friends!



Roasted butternut squash puree: 

  • 1 small butternut squash


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups short grain brown rice (or arborio rice)
  • 2 tsp butter or dairy-free butter
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 46 cups vegetable broth, heated (in a pot or microwave)
  • 1/2 cup butternut squash puree
  • 1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • a generous handful of grated parmesan cheese (or dairy-free cheese for vegan)
  • salt & pepper to taste


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and line a baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. Cut the butternut squash in half and place face down on the baking pan.
  3. Bake for 30-45 minutes until the squash is tender. Remove and let cool.
  4. Remove the seeds and peel and transfer the squash to a blender. blend until smooth.
  5. Heat the olive oil in a pan on medium-high heat.
  6. Add the onions and cook 3-4 minutes, until translucent. Then add the garlic and cook another 2 minutes.
  7. Add the rice and butter and mix together, letting the rice toast for about a minute, then add in the wine and cook until the liquid has evaporated.
  8. Slowly add the broth, a 1/2 cup at a time, stirring frequently until the liquid is completely absorbed before adding more broth.
  9. Cook for 20 to 30 minutes or until the rice is al dente. Add broth, as needed.
  10. When the risotto is almost done, add in the butternut squash, nutmeg, parmesan cheese, salt and pepper.
  11. Divide into bowls. Garnish with sage and extra parmesan if desired.


Use arborio rice or a short-grain brown rice to make this recipe. 

Adding a splash of white wines gives a nice acidity to the dish. If you don’t have white wine on hand you can add a splash of lemon juice. 

To test if the consistency of your risotto is right, run a spoon through the risotto in the pan. If it slowly seeps back together you’ve got the consistency you want! Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge.


  • Serving Size: 1 bowl
  • Calories: 291
  • Sugar: 8g
  • Fat: 10g
  • Saturated Fat: 3g
  • Carbohydrates: 40g
  • Fiber: 6g
  • Protein: 11g

Keywords: how to make risotto, can you reheat risotto, risotto with butternut squash