Prawn & Saffron Risotto

Prawn & Saffron Risotto Recipe

Risotto is a northern Italian rice dish with a creamy consistency. Risotto is often made with saffron and paired with seafood. Saffron gives the dish a bright yellow color. Vero’s risotto uses carnorolli rice that is considered the best for risotto due to its high starch content.


  • Parmigiano
  • Butter
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Chicken stock
  • Carnaroli rice
  • Shallots
  • Lemon
  • Mascarpone cheese
  • Parsley
  • Saffron threads
  • Prawns


  • Large sauté pan
  • Medium sauté pan
  • Large sauce pot for stock
  • Spatula or wooden spoon
  • Chef’s knife
  • Cutting board
  • Ladle



STEP 1: Pat shrimp dry and season with salt and pepper. Set aside. Finely chop shallots and set aside. Juice lemon and set aside. Remove parsley leaves from stem. Set aside for garnish.

STEP 2: Simmer chicken stock over low heat. Heat half of the extra virgin olive oil and half of the butter in large sauté pan over medium heat. (Save remaining butter and oil.) Once butter has melted, add finely chopped shallots. Season generously with salt to pull out flavor. Stir and cook over medium-low heat until shallots are translucent. Add carnaroli rice and stir. Continue stirring for 1-2 minutes or until there is a slightly nutty aroma.

STEP 3: Ladle 3 scoops of hot chicken stock into pan. Stir until ithe liquid is absorbed. When the pan is almost dry, repeat with 3 more ladles of hot chicken stock, stirring constantly. Continue adding hot chicken stock when absorbed and pan is almost dry, stirring constantly. This repetitive stirring and reducing stock may seem like overkill, but it’s the key to a creamy, perfect risotto. That’s why Italian Grandmas have strong arms.

STEP 4: Continue this stirring and adding stock process for 20-30 minutes or until the risotto is al dente or your desired consistency. Add lemon juice and remaining stock and reduce to low heat while you cook your prawns. Al dente means tender but still firm to the bite. If you have run out of stock and the risotto is not cooked to your liking, you may finish the cooking process by using warm water.

STEP 5: Heat remaining olive oil over high heat until shimmering. Add prawns and sear on one side until golden-brown (1-2 minutes). Once golden-brown, flip shrimp and sear other side (1-2 minutes). Once shrimp are cooked fully through, turn off heat and add 1 tablespoon of butter to pan. Swirl or stir pan to coat shrimp with butter. Finish cooked risotto with saffron threads, ½ of the grated parmigiano, butter, mascarpone and season with salt and pepper. Turn off heat and stir.

STEP 6: Pour into a serving dish. Garnish with remaining grated parmigiano, pan-seared shrimp, and parsley leaves. Take a picture of your final dish and enjoy your pasta!