Seafood risotto is a quick and easy homemade dinner recipe. With succulent juicy prawns, seared scallops, moist fish and pan fried squid we create a restaurant style meal from the comfort of home. This seafood risotto recipe is perfect for date night, a special occasion or simply when you want lots of flavor, taste and texture all at the same time.
🤍 Recipe Highlights
I have summarised everything that you will come to know and love (LOVE ❤) about the recipe in the points below:
- Simple ingredients: you will be able to get everything you need to make the recipe from your grocery store. They are year round available ingredients that will be easy to get your hands on. Plus an added bonus is that you might already have some of them in the pantry ready to go.
- Versatile: you can serve the seafood risotto as a main meal, for family get togethers, dinner with friends or a special occasion. It is a flexible recipe and as such lends itself to a variety of occasions.
- Alternative proteins: it is great to switch up the proteins every now and then from Roast Chicken to Lamb Ribs, Beef Back Ribs, Pork or Tofu. Mixed seafood is also another protein that can help diversify our dinners offering different tastes and textures.
- Easy: we do a small amount of prep work by peeling and deveining the prawns and having everything prepped and ready to go. Once these steps are done the recipe comes together easily with a reasonably fast cook time.
- Fine dining: seafood recipes always have a sophisticated sense about them. Despite being easy to cook they can be shrouded in mystery and eaten out more so than cooked at home. This simple seafood risotto recipe will let you master it in a prawn shell 😂👌😉.
- Summer time: when it is hot, hot, hot out (Sunny Queensland 😁), the last thing you can feel like doing is cooking a meal with heavy meats. This fresh seafood risotto recipe offers a warm meal that matches well with the climate and brings the beach and summer lifestyle indoors.
The photo below is to show you everything you need to make this easy seafood risotto recipe. Please refer to the printable recipe card for specific ingredient measurements as well as detailed instructions.
As you can see the recipe calls for:
- Olive oil: we use a small amount of olive oil initially when we are cooking the prawns on the stove top.
- Garlic: the options here are to use 2-3 fresh garlic cloves, minced garlic or chunky chopped garlic. Whichever is the easiest and most convenient for you is the one I recommend 😉👍
- Salt and pepper: we use salt and a little bit of black pepper for seasoning in the recipe. You can also use some black pepper for garnish when serving the finished dish.
- Parmesan cheese: freshly grated using a micro plane zester is best.
- White wine: nothing fancy or expensive needed. I recommend pinot gris and a bottle around the $10 mark which is budget friendly and does the job will do the trick.
- Butter: we melt the butter in the pan and use it to sauté the onions. This combination gives the unmistakeable risotto flavor base to the recipe.
- Onion: we want to use ½ of a large onion that we peel and chop ourselves.
- Scallops: these delightful little scallops melt like butter in your mouth! They are somewhat decadent too! No shell or roe is needed. You can purchase scallop meat at most local supermarkets.
- Squid: we want to chop some squid rings and pan fry them for a couple of minutes. They have a soft and juicy texture.
- Fish: we want to use a bone free fillet of fish. Many supermarkets will have this in the seafood section of the deli where the prawns and shrimp are sold. We then roughly chop it into chunky pieces.
- Prawns: or shrimp depending on what country you are in. Fresh prawns that we peel and devein ourselves will give the freshest results.
- Frozen peas: we add these to the risotto as is in their frozen state. Due to the temperature of the pan contents, they thaw and cook very quickly.
- Rice: we want to use arborio rice or risotto style rice. These (are the same) and are a short white grain or rice known for their capacity to absorb liquids.
- Chicken stock: for ease and convenience. We use store bought chicken stock. I do expand in the notes further below that you can also make your own fish stock or purchase fish stock (fish broth) if it is readily available where you live.
Tasty Tip: I like to provide you with a number of substitutions and variations giving you an array of options when making the recipe. If in doubt of any of the above ingredients, or wanting alternatives, read this section (further below) before jumping into the instructions on how to make the recipe which are coming next 😉👌.
Here are the step by step instructions to make the recipe. We start by preparing the prawns. You will need a cutting board and small knife for this initial step with a bag to hold the debris.
- Prepare the prawns (Photo 1)
- Add the oil, prawns, garlic, salt, pepper and cook (Photo 2)
- Cook the scallops (Photo 3)
- Add the fish and squid (Photo 4)
👩🍳 How to Make Seafood Risotto
To make the seafood risotto we start by preparing the prawns. To do so we want to use a cutting board and twist the prawns to remove their heads. Next peel the shell and legs of the prawn down to the end section which you leave intact so that the tails are still attached.
Then use a small knife and cut along the backside of each prawn. Once you have done this pull the digestive tract out and discard. Then repeat this process until all of the prawns are ready.
Next get ready to cook the prawns. Place a large sauté pan on the stove top, turn the heat to high, add the olive oil, prawns, garlic, salt and pepper. Cook the prawn for 3-4 minutes using a silicon turner to flip them as you go. Once they are cooked, have turned bright orange and have no clear or translucent flesh bits left use the utensil to transfer them from the pan into a paper towel lined bowl.
Next without rinsing or cleaning the pan, add the scallops and cook them for 3 -4 minutes. During this time flip each scallop so that both sides have a nice sear on them.
Then remove these from the pan and add them to the cooked prawns.
Next add the sliced calamari rings and chopped fish to the pan. Cook this till the fish flesh is white and not clear and the squid has some char marks on each side) which will take about 3-4 minutes. Once the fish and squid are cooked, remove them to a paper towel lined chopping board.
Now you are ready to make the risotto. To do so, again without rinsing or cleaning the pan, add the butter and onion and sauté the onion in the butter then add the white wine like you see me doing in the photo below.
- Add the butter and sauté the onion (Photo 5)
- Next add the risotto rice (Photo 6)
- Pour in the white wine and let it coat the rice grains (Photo 7)
- Add the stock then frozen peas (Photo 8)
Next add the risotto style rice to the pan followed by the white wine.
Give the contents of the pan a stir or 2 to allow the rice grains begin to get covered in liquids. Then pour in the chicken stock (slowly allowing it to be somewhat absorbed before adding more of it).
Then add the frozen peas to the pan like you see me doing in the photo above.
Once the peas have thawed and cooked add the parmesan cheese to the pan and stir.
When the risotto thickens, the cheese has melted and the liquids been absorbed by the pan add the cooked fish and squid back to the pan as you see in the photo below.
- Add the parmesan cheese (Photo 9)
- Then add the cooked fish and squid (Photo 10)
- Add the cooked prawns and scallops (Photo 11)
- Heat through and garnish (Photo 12)
Next add the cooked prawns and scallops back to the pan and allow these to heat through.
Once the risotto is consistently combined and the seafood is warm and palatable get your garnish on with some black pepper and sprinkle of freshly grated parmesan cheese.
Then grab some bowls, forks and spoons and get ready to garnish and serve (always the best bit right 😉👌).
🍽 Serving Suggestions
For a wine pairing try a chilled glass of rose or a crispy pinot gris. If you are a red wine lover, try a glass of pinot noir along side the risotto. It is practically a match made in heaven 😉👌.
👍 How to Guide
How to Store
Store leftover seafood risotto in a sealed, airtight container in the fridge for 2-3 days. Leftovers need to be reheated before being consumed.
How to Freeze
Allow the risotto to fully cool. Once it has portion into containers and seal. Then freeze the portions for up to 3 months.
How to Reheat
Allow frozen portions of the risotto to fully thaw before reheating in the microwave.
Or you can add leftovers to serving bowls, then cover with cling wrap. Heat on high for 2-3 minutes, stirring after 1 minute and test that the risotto is heated through before serving.
😉 Substitutions and Variations
Here are my sub ins and outs that you might be thinking about as you read the post and I will tell you if I think they will work or why they won't:
- If you want to add more types of seafood or switch some in and some out, you might like to try adding mussels, crab meat or bugs.
- Or if you wanted to simplify the prep work you can use a store bought seafood marinara mix which simply needs to be pan fried.
- You can use pecorino romano cheese in place of the parmesan cheese (equivalent amount) if you wish too.
- For an additional vegetable you can add some chopped asparagus spears or sliced mushrooms.
- To keep it easy I like to use chicken stock. You can also use vegetable stock. If you want to take it one step further, you can use the prawn heads and shells to make fish stock, bearing in mind it will increase the recipe time and effort involved.
- If you can find store bought fish stock and you want to use that, it will work nicely too 😉👌.
💡 Tasty Tips
Here are my top tips and tricks that I want to share with you so that you master the recipe from the get go:
- If you want to take the tail off the prawns when you are peeling them, you can.
- We want to use a large sauté pan or frying pan as we need it to hold a high volume of ingredients.
- I like to garnish the dish with black pepper and some parmesan cheese. You can also add some finely chopped parsley for a pop or 2 of colour on top if you wish too also.
- If you want to make the risotto wine free then you can add the difference (wine quantity) of additional chicken stock to the recipe. This will keep the ratios of wet and dry ingredients well rounded.
- I don't recommend using a non risotto rice. Arborio or risotto style are the most commonly branded packets of rice you will find that will work well for the recipe. Regular white rice or other white rices are not good choices to sub in for the recipe.
- If you love seafood recipes then you might also like the Fettuccine Alfredo With Scallops, Prawn Pizza, Mexican Prawns, Sweet Chilli Prawns, Satay Prawns, Tiger Prawns or the Shrimp Yakisoba.
🤓 Frequently Asked Questions
What is seafood risotto made of?
Seafood risotto is made from a combination of fresh seafood, arborio rice, chicken broth, peas, wine, onion, garlic and butter.
What goes well with seafood risotto?
Seafood risotto pairs exceptionally well with garlic bread. Either homemade or store bought and oven baked are good options.
What makes risotto creamy?
The starchy rice and parmesan cheese combination is what makes risotto so creamy. As the liquids get absorbed by the rice, the grains soften and expand with a soft creamy texture.
😍 More Easy Dinner Recipes
Dinner can be easy, breezy and inspired every night of the week if you have an array of versatile recipes to turn too. This is that array of recipes 😉👍.
- Shrimp And Chicken Fried Rice
- Chorizo Pasta Bake
- Thai Minced Pork
- Scallop Fried Rice
- Chorizo and Prawn Linguine
- Baked Ziti With Meatballs
- Mince Pasta Bake
- Garlic Chicken Parmesan Pasta
- Cajun Prawns
- 2 tbs olive oil Note 1
- 500 grams/ 1 pound prawns (shrimp) Note 2
- 1 tbs garlic chunky chopped, 2 fresh garlic cloves or minced garlic, Note 3
- ¼ teaspoon salt Note 4
- ½ teaspoon black pepper also Note 4
- 200 grams/ 8 oz scallops this is about 16-20 scallops, Note 5
- 2 medium squid cut into rings, Note 6
- 1 fillet fish boneless white fish, cut into chunky pieces, Note 7
- 40 grams/ 3 tbs butter unsalted as we add salt separately, Note 8
- ½ large onion peeled and finely diced, Note 9
- 2 cups arborio rice this is the dried amount, Note 10
- ½ cup/125 ml white wine Note 11
- 4 cups/1 litre chicken stock Note 12
- 1 cup frozen peas Note 13
- ½ cup parmesan cheese freshly grated using a micro plane zester, Note 14
- black pepper
- parmesan cheese
- Prawns: prepare the prawns by using a cutting board and starting by twisting their heads off. Then peel the shell and legs, leaving the tail and end segment intact. Next use a knife and cut along the backbone of the prawns and remove the digestive tract and discard. Repeat this process for all of the prawns.
- Cook prawns: place a large sauté pan on the stove top, turn the heat to high, add the olive oil, prawns, garlic, salt and pepper. Cook the prawns for 2-3 minutes per side until they have turned bright orange with white flesh and there is no translucent skin. Once they are cooked, use a slotted spoon to remove them from the pan and place them onto a paper towel lined plate.
- Cook scallops: next without rinsing or cleaning the pan used to cook the prawns add the scallops and cook them for 3-4 minutes, ensuring that both sides have a golden brown sear and once done transfer them to the bowl with the cooked prawns.
- Fish and squid: again without rinsing or cleaning the pan add the chopped fish and squid rings. Cook the fish till it firms and is white throughout. Cook the squid till each side has a light brown sear and the rings have firmed up somewhat (2-3 minutes). Then remove the squid and fish from the pan and place it onto a paper towel lined chopping board.
- Onion and butter: next add the butter to the pan, followed by the diced onions. Let the butter melt and sauté the onions for 1 minute.
- Rice and wine: once the onions have been sautéed add the rice and stir to coat it in the onion and butter mix. Then add the white wine and continue to stir to let the rice begin to absorb the liquid.
- Stock (broth) and frozen peas: next gradually add the chicken stock to the pan, stirring allowing some of it to absorb before adding more. Then when all of the stock is in the pan add the frozen peas. Let the peas thaw and cook for 1 minute.
- Parmesan cheese: once the peas have cooked add the parmesan cheese to the pan and stir allowing it to melt and mix in with the risotto.
- Cooked seafoods: next add the cooked fish and squid to the pan, followed by the cooked prawns and scallops. Gently stir to fold these into the risotto then allow them to heat through.
- To serve: once the seafood has been combined and heated through garnish the risotto with some freshly cracked black pepper as well as parmesan cheese. Grab some bowls, forks and spoons and get ready to portion and serve.
- Note 1 - Olive oil: we use a small amount of olive oil initially when we are cooking the prawns on the stove top.
- Note 2 - Prawns: or shrimp depending on what country you are in. Fresh prawns that we peel and devein ourselves will give the freshest results. If you want to remove the tails when you are peeling the prawns you can.
- Note 3 - Garlic: the options here are to use 2-3 fresh garlic cloves, minced garlic or chunky chopped garlic. Whichever is the easiest and most convenient for you is the one I recommend 😉👍
- Note 4 - Salt and pepper: we use salt and a little bit of black pepper for seasoning in the recipe. You can also use some black pepper for garnish when serving the finished dish.
- Note 5 - Scallops: these delightful little scallops melt like butter in your mouth! They are somewhat decadent too! No shell or roe is needed. You can purchase scallop meat at most local supermarkets.
- Note 6 - Squid: we want to chop some squid rings and pan fry them for a couple of minutes. They have a soft and juicy texture.
- Note 7- Fish: we want to use a bone free fillet of fish. Many supermarkets will have this in the seafood section of the deli where the prawns and shrimp are sold. We then roughly chop it into chunky pieces.
- Note 8 - Butter: we melt the butter in the pan and use it to sauté the onions. This combination gives the unmistakeable risotto flavor base to the recipe.
- Note 9 - Onion: we want to use ½ of a large onion that we peel and chop ourselves.
- Note 10 - Rice: we want to use arborio rice or risotto style rice. These (are the same) and are a short white grain or rice known for their capacity to absorb liquids.
- Note 11- White wine: nothing fancy or expensive needed. I recommend pinot gris and a bottle around the $10 mark is budget friendly and does the job.
- Note 12 - Chicken stock: for ease and convenience. We use store bought chicken stock. I do expand in the notes further below that you can also make your own fish stock or purchase fish stock (fish broth) if it is readily available where you live.
- Note 13 - Frozen peas: we add these to the risotto as is in their frozen state. Due to the temperature of the pan contents, they thaw and cook very quickly.
- Note 14 - Parmesan cheese: freshly grated using a micro plane zester is best. Or you can save time if needed and use a store bought bag of grated parmesan cheese then measure the ½ cup from the bag.
- Serving size: this recipe will serve 4 adults a generous serving. You can reduce the portion size to decrease the kcal quantities or simply if you want to make the risotto stretch to more people.