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  • Heather Bainbridge EdM, MA, RDN

Double Duty: An Easy Peasy One Pot Dish Fast Enough for the Weeknight Yet Impressive Enough to Serve

Now that I have a new little guy to take care of time and simplicity are of the essence! But whether you have 5 kids or cooking for yourself, your time is precious. Read on for my easy, balanced and dare I say fancy Asparagus and Sausage Risotto recipe that drums up a clean bowl from my 3 year old son as well as compliments from our foodie friends.

If you're wondering what I mean by "balanced" it's because it incorporates a vegetable, protein and starch all in one pot. And except for about 5 minutes while the vegetables are being chopped I can tend to a crying 5 week old or easily converse with friends. Plus I discovered that people tend to get excited when you're cooking risotto for them, which was an unintended bonus the first time I made this for our friends. I literally was doing it out of convenience, but they were totally impressed, which felt awesome!

In addition to being a quick dish, there are many health benefits. Asparagus contains the prebiotic called inulin, which is the food for probiotics to flourish. Asparagus also contains a host of antioxidants that reduce inflammation and contribute to a healthy metabolism and immune system since is an excellent source of B vitamins and vitamin C. I included chicken sausage to increase protein and flavor leading to a more fulfilling dish.

Please read my notes below to decrease prep time.

To your health,


Asparagus and Chicken Sausage Risotto

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

2 cups arborio rice

1/2 cup good white wine (optional)

6 cups chicken stock or broth, heated

4 links chicken sausage, sliced down the center and chopped (Try: Applegate Farms dinner sausage)

1 lb. asparagus, woody ends snapped off, chopped in bite size pieces (about 1")

1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Extra Parmesan for serving

In a large pot, heat oil over medium high heat oil until it shimmers. Add onion, sauté for 3-4 minutes until onion softens.

Add rice and cook for 1 minute.

Pour wine in pot, stirring until evaporated.

Stir in sausage and add 1-2 cups of broth, stirring occasionally until broth is absorbed.

Continue to add broth 1-2 cups at a time for a total of 15-20 minutes.

Add asparagus when halfway through adding the stock.

Finally stir in Parmesan cheese. Serve hot. Top with Parmesan cheese as desired.


-The wine is optional, but a great excuse to open a bottle. Although the alcohol in the wine largely evaporates, while I was pregnant I omitted it without sacrificing the overall taste.

-For best efficiency, only chop the onion in advance, you'll have plenty of time to chop the sausage and asparagus while making the risotto.

minutes of chopping I can old

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