Easy Cashew Pesto Risotto | Veggie Magnifique

Easy Cashew Pesto Risotto

in Recipes



You thought this post was going to be a recipe…. But really it’s going to be all about how much I love my new rice cooker.

I’m by far the most Asian Norwegian you’ll ever meet. Wait — you thought I was American? Roots, baby. I got roots. And they’re Norwegian. But you’d think I was Asian. I eat Asian food several times a week, and in addition to loving rice, I love minimalism, kawaii, politeness, punctuality, baths, and these pens.

But let’s talk more about rice.


The smell of warm rice waiting for you when you get home from work/school.  The stickiness that results from adding too much water (on purpose.) The near-impossibility of you burning rice for the millionth time…  

Long live rice cookers.

So why didn’t I have one up until last week?

Well, ever since my friend Franklin gave me a rice cooker before I went off to college — best gift ever — and then somehow it got lost before I could use it (still a mystery), I’ve been mourning its loss, and longing to have one at last.

So I finally broke down and got one.

And I’ve been having rice for breakfast, lunch, and dinner… creating new recipes, food prepping, and… doing lots of chewing.

Plus, from a nutritional standpoint, I’d like to seize this opportunity to get all macrobiotic on you for a sec. Whole grains (like brown rice) are considered by macrobiotical folks to be “the foods in which yin and yang are closest to being in balance.” And chewing is über beneficial for digestion, guys.

So today’s a rice party. Risotto, to be exact. And you’re going to be amazed by how easy this recipe is to pull off (especially if you have a rice cooker — though it’s totally not required,) and how absolutely creamy-creams it is.


Cashew Pesto Risotto

My favorite food textures: chewy and creamy. Remember: Most of my cooking is ad hoc, so please be willing to experiment and taste as you go.

Prep time

20 min.

Cook time

15 min.

Total time

35 min.


Serves 2-ish.

  • Two small handfuls of raw cashews (soaked or unsoaked)
  • Two small carrots or one big one (this will be a “hidden veggie” Heee!)
  • Big handful of fresh basil
  • Garlic clove (I used two… but then, that’s how I roll. You may want to start with one.)
  • Two pinches sea salt or pink himalayan salt
  • A couple shakes of pepper
  • Squirt of coconut nectar or agave
  • A few squeezes of lemon
  • A spoonful of nutritional yeast. (Optional.)
  • Brown sushi rice (short grained) portioned for two hungry people.
  • Handful of cherry tomatoes, halved.
  1. Make rice how you would normally make it.
  2. Steam (or sauté in water) your carrots until they’re soft, but not mushy. Save some of the water used for cooking the carrots and set aside.
  3. In a blender of some kind (I used a NutriBullet,) blend your carrots, garlic, cashews, basil, coconut nectar/agave, lemon, salt, pepper, and some of the carrot cooking water. How much? It depends. Add gradually. Blend, blend.
  4. Once the mixture is thick and well blended, but thin enough to pour (let’s say the consistency of a thick soup,) taste it. Does it need a pinch more salt? Does it need a little bit more sweetness, or a smidgen of lemon juice? Do as you see fit.
  5. Then pour the mixture over your already made brown rice in a saucepan, stir in the nutritional yeast if you want, and stir stir stir over medium heat. Depending on whether your rice was already warm or not, this will take between two and five minutes.
  6. Add in the cherry tomatoes. Stir a bit.
  7. Serve, and garnish with a basil leaf.
  8. Enjoy with someone you love. They are going to LOVE you after this if there was any doubt.
Notes & Tips

The carrots give this dish an added element of creaminess and complexity, and I highly recommend you don’t skip this part. Especially because it adds another veggie to your dish! Yum!

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So, when the cravings for this creamy risotto hit, chalk it up to going “macro”… because sometimes you need to yin out all your yang-ing, or vice versa. (We know all about those brownie bites…. and we know it’s our fault. 😉 )

With love and balance,

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13 May, 2016 | facebook | tweet | pin

One thought on “Easy Cashew Pesto Risotto

  1. Juno Dunn says:

    This sounds delicious x

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