Italian Sausage and Mushroom Risotto

Mushroom risotto with Parmesan cheese, mushrooms, and sweet Italian sausage.

Sausage Mushroom Risotto
Elise Bauer

Sometimes I'll mention a recipe to my father, and if it starts with the words "Italian sausage" I don't think it matters that much what words comes after, he's already sold!

We recently made this risotto recipe together (barely adapted from Bon Appetit); dad did the provisioning, the mushroom prep, and sausage cooking, while I sat on a stool stirring the risotto for a half an hour while the rice slowly absorbed the stock, a cupful at a time.

Making risotto requires patience, it cannot be rushed. The rice will only absorb so much liquid at a time; it is the perfect "slow food".

Neither one of us counts patience as a virtue, but perhaps I have a little more when it comes to the long, slow stirring that this dish requires, so that's the job I happily take.

Italian Sausage and Mushroom Risotto

Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Total Time 55 mins
Servings 4 servings

Adapted from Bon Appétit magazine.


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 pound Italian sweet sausage, removed from casings, crumbled

  • 1/2 pound cremini mushrooms, diced

  • 10 ounces shiitake mushrooms, diced

  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme

  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano

  • 1 1/2 cups Madeira, divided

  • 6 cups chicken stock (use gluten-free stock if cooking gluten-free)

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter

  • 1 large onion, chopped

  • 4 garlic cloves, minced

  • 2 cups arborio rice

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Asiago or Parmesan cheese, for topping


  1. Cook the sausage and mushrooms:

    Heat olive oil in large skillet over medium heat. Crumble the sausage into the pan, spreading it out in an even layer. Cook for a couple of minutes.

    Add the mushrooms, thyme, and oregano. Increase the heat to medium high and cook until the mushrooms are tender, about 10 minutes. Add 1/2 cup of the Madeira and scrape to deglaze the pan, about 1 minute. Set aside.

  2. Heat the chicken stock:

    Heat the stock until it is steamy or simmering in a large saucepan and keep warm over low heat.

  3. Sauté the onions and garlic in butter:

    Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and sauté, stirring frequently, until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes.

  4. Add the rice:

    Add the rice to the onions and cook for a couple of minutes, stirring frequently, until the rice starts to brown.

  5. Add the remaining Madeira:

    Cook, stirring constantly until Madeira has been absorbed, about 2 minutes.

  6. Add the hot stock, one ladleful at a time:

    Simmer until it is almost all absorbed by the rice, after each addition. Slowly stir the rice while it is cooking in the stock.

    Continue to cook until rice is just tender and mixture is creamy, adding more stock by ladlefuls, stirring often and allowing most stock to be absorbed before adding more, until rice is tender, but still firm to the bite, about 20 to 25 minutes.

  7. Add the sausage and mushrooms, season, and add cheese:

    Ad the sausage and mushrooms. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with cheese to serve.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
1015 Calories
70g Fat
59g Carbs
33g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 1015
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 70g 90%
Saturated Fat 29g 146%
Cholesterol 151mg 50%
Sodium 2492mg 108%
Total Carbohydrate 59g 22%
Dietary Fiber 3g 10%
Total Sugars 12g
Protein 33g
Vitamin C 4mg 20%
Calcium 172mg 13%
Iron 4mg 22%
Potassium 1594mg 34%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.