This Vegan Kale and Leek Risotto is a comforting, gluten-free one-pot-meal that is creamy and full of flavor. The perfect cozy dinner for the cooler months!
Risotto was one of the first "fancy" things I learned how to make. When I was in high school, all I watched was The Food Network. I watched so many episodes about risotto. Something about it seemed really high brow to me. So, the first time I made it, I felt like a real chef. So, if you want to feel like a fancy chef, or to make a special Valentines Day or date night dinner, make this Vegan Kale and Leek Risotto for dinner.
Ingredients for Making Vegan Kale and Leek Risotto
Vegan Butter: I like vegan butter for this risotto recipe, but you can use olive oil if you prefer.
Leeks: Four leeks may seem like a lot, but you trim a lot off of them. And the reduce through cooking.
Garlic: Because I can't make Italian food without it.
Arborio Rice: And ONLY arborio rice. I'll talk about it in more detail below.
Dry White Wine: I love a Sauvignon Blanc for this Vegan Kale Risotto.
Vegetable Stock: To simmer everything together.
Nutritional Yeast: For a bit of flavor.
Kale: Kale is wilted in right at the end.
Arborio rice is an Italian short grain rice that has a high starch content.
What makes this Vegan Leek and Kale Risotto creamy isn't cream- its the starch from the rice!
Constant stirring releases starch from the rice to create that creamy and velvety texture we all know and love.
So, if you don't have arborio rice, your risotto will not have the creamy risotto texture. I typically get my arborio rice from the bulk bin section, but have also used this Rice Select arborio rice. But, really any brand will do.
How to Trim Leeks
Leeks look like a giant spring onion. And thats because they are in the same family. Leeks are more mild than a regular onion so when you see the amount we are using in this Vegan Kale and Leek Risotto, don't panic.
To properly cut a leek:
First, hold the white part with the green top facing away from you.
Then, hold a chefs knife at a 45 degree angle with the blade facing away from you.
Now, remove the green tops by slicing the knife away from you, while turning the leek in your hand. This action exposes more usable light green leek under the dark green tops.
Next, cut the leek in half long ways.
Then, slice ¼ inch slices cross wise.
Now, wash the leeks.
Place the sliced leek into a large bowl or a salad spinner to wash with cold water.
Sandy dirt often gets stuck between the layers.
So, leeks are one vegetable that is best to wash after its cut. After the leeks have been washed, they are ready to sauté and make this Vegan Kale and Leek Risotto.
Me Favorite Vegetable Stock
If you have been here a while, you know that my all time favorite vegetable stock is Better Than Bullion.
Its flavorful, compact and stays fresh FORVER. I love that I can make just ½ cup of vegetable stock without opening a big box of stock.
I always get the Lower Sodium Vegetable Base so I can control how much salt is in my dish. If you haven't tried Better Than Bullion yet, trust me and pick a jar up. It gives this Vegan Kale and Leek Risotto a flavorful backbone.
Looking for More Dinner Recipes?
Lentil Bolognese by: Feasting at Home
Vegan Leek and Kale Risotto
- 1 3-4 Quart Dutch Oven
- 1 Cutting Board
- 1 Chefs Knife
- 1 Ladle
- Measuring Cups and Spoons
- 2 tablespoon Vegan Butter
- 4 Medium Leeks, trimmed, halved and cut into ¼ inch slices This is about 5 cups of sliced leeks
- 3 Medium Cloves Garlic, minced
- 1 ½ Cups Arborio Rice don't rinse the rice!
- ½ Cup Dry White Wine
- ½ teaspoon Dried Thyme Leaves
- 5 Cups Vegetable Stock, warmed
- 2 tablespoon Nutritional Yeast
- 3 Cups Roughly chopped and Lightly Packed Kale
- Salt and Pepper to Taste
- In a large dutch oven over medium heat, melt butter and add leeks. Sauté until the leeks are translucent at soft. 7-9 minutes. See note.2 tablespoon Vegan Butter, 4 Medium Leeks, trimmed, halved and cut into ¼ inch slices
- Add garlic and sauté for 1 minute.3 Medium Cloves Garlic, minced
- Add arborio rice and toast the rice for 1 minute.1 ½ Cups Arborio Rice
- Add wine and thyme. Stir well allowing the alcohol to evaporate. Reduce heat to low.½ Cup Dry White Wine, ½ teaspoon Dried Thyme Leaves
- Add vegetable stock using a ladle in ¾ cup increments, stirring constantly between each addition and allowing most of the liquid to absorb before adding the next addition of liquid.5 Cups Vegetable Stock, warmed
- Repeat stirring and adding liquid until the rice is tender. This will take 24-26 minutes. You may not use all of the liquid and thats okay.
- Remove from heat and stir in nutritional yeast, then add kale leaves allowing residual heat from the pot to wilt the kale. Taste and season with salt and pepper.2 tablespoon Nutritional Yeast, 3 Cups Roughly chopped and Lightly Packed Kale, Salt and Pepper to Taste
Let me know how you like this recipe and if there is anything you'd like to see me make next!