Miso Pumpkin Risotto with Crispy Sage

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Large pan of pumpkin risotto with crispy sage

By now everyone knows: Our love for pumpkin runs deep. But unlike our other new pumpkin recipes (we’re looking at you, pumpkin spice cake bites), we were craving something savory this time around. And we couldn’t be more pleased with the result!
All the classic, creamy, salty, comforting components of risotto come together with nature’s favorite fall child (pumpkin).

Top it with crispy sage and you’ve got a savory-sweet side or entrée that’s simple to make but so delicious and impressive! Did we mention it’s plant-based, gluten-free, and made with just 9 ingredients!? Let’s make risotto!

Leeks, garlic, sage, salt, miso paste, arborio rice, white wine, water, pumpkin purée, and olive oil

History of Risotto

Risotto is a rice-based dish that is believed to have originated in Milan, Italy. The first version was called Risotto alla Milanese and was traditionally made with butter, onion, white wine, stock, salt, saffron, and Parmesan. Since then, many flavor variations have been created.

This plant-based version is not traditional but is dairy-free and infused with pumpkin and miso!

How to Make Pumpkin Risotto

We originally planned to cube and roast fresh pumpkin for this risotto. But we know you like simple. And we do too, as long as it doesn’t mean sacrificing on flavor.

So when the idea came around to infuse pumpkin purée into the broth, we had to try it! And great news: The shortcut works beautifully and those who want to start with a fresh pumpkin can do that (learn how to make homemade pumpkin purée here). Everyone wins!

Adding pumpkin to a saucepan to make miso pumpkin broth

The pumpkin purée creates a broth with the addition of salty, umami miso paste, and water. If you’re new to miso, check out our Miso 101 Guide to learn about its origins, health benefits, different types, and more!

Next we transition to the rice and veggies while leaving the miso pumpkin broth on the stovetop to keep warm.

Pouring miso pumpkin broth over sautéed leeks, garlic, sage, and arborio rice

Sautéed leeks, garlic, and sage create a base with savory fall feels, while arborio rice is the classic risotto grain. Next we add salt for flavor and white wine to deglaze the pan, then slowly ladle in the miso pumpkin broth a little at a time to keep the risotto at a simmer to ensure best texture.

Making crispy fried sage in a pan

Once all the liquid is absorbed, top your risotto with crispy fried sage for a delicious contrast of textures.

Wooden spoon in a pan of vegan pumpkin risotto with crispy sage

We hope you LOVE this pumpkin risotto! It’s:

Easy to make
& SO delicious!

It’s perfect for the holiday table, as a quick weeknight entrée or side, or anytime you’re craving a savory, pumpkin-y dish!

What to Serve with Pumpkin Risotto

This pumpkin risotto would be delicious with our Lemon & Herb Roasted Chicken or Runny Yolk Egg for a protein-rich pairing. Or for a fiber + protein boost, top with Actually Crispy Baked Chickpeas or Tempeh Meatballs.

For more veggies, try it with our Apple Pecan Arugula Salad, Abundance Kale Salad with Savory Tahini Dressing, Lemony Arugula Salad with Crispy Shallot, or Roasted Vegetable Salad.

More Delicious Dairy-Free Risotto Recipes

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers, friends!

Bowl of crispy sage and bowl of pumpkin risotto with crispy sage

Miso Pumpkin Risotto with Crispy Sage

Creamy, comforting risotto infused with pumpkin and topped with crispy sage. A satisfying, gluten-free and plant-based entrée or side made with just 9 ingredients!
Author Minimalist Baker
Pan of vegan pumpkin risotto topped with crispy sage
4.47 from 13 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 4 (Servings)
Course Side
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Italian-Inspired, Vegan
Freezer Friendly No
Does it keep? 2-3 Days



  • 4 cups water
  • 2 Tbsp chickpea miso paste (regular soy miso works as well, yellow or white is best here // learn about miso here)
  • 1 (15-oz.) can pumpkin purée (Libby’s brand for best flavor // not pumpkin pie mix // or sub ~1 ¾ cups homemade)


  • 2 Tbsp olive oil (or vegan butter)
  • 1 cup thinly sliced leeks (well cleaned and dried)
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp freshly chopped sage
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 3/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine (such as sauvignon blanc or pinot gris)
  • 1-2 tsp maple syrup (optional // for enhanced pumpkin flavor)

CRISPY SAGE optional

  • 1 ½ – 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh sage
  • 1 healthy pinch sea salt


  • MISO PUMPKIN BROTH: In a medium saucepan, bring water to a simmer over medium heat. Once simmering, reduce heat to low to keep the water warm.
  • Add miso to a small mixing bowl and scoop out ~1/2 cup (120 ml) of water from the saucepan. Add to the miso and whisk/stir until mostly dissolved (this allows the miso to fully blend with the water and not clump). Add the miso mixture and pumpkin purée to the pot of warm water and stir to dissolve. Turn off the heat, but leave the pot on the stovetop to keep warm.
  • RISOTTO: Heat a large rimmed skillet over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil (or vegan butter) and leek and cook, stirring occasionally, until somewhat browned and caramelized — about 3-5 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute until fragrant.
  • Reduce heat to medium and add sage, arborio rice, and salt and cook for 1 minute, stirring to coat. Add dry white wine and cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring frequently, or until the liquid is absorbed.
  • Using a ladle or measuring cup, add warmed miso pumpkin broth 1/2 cup (120 ml) at a time, stirring almost constantly, giving the risotto little breaks to come back to a simmer. The heat should be medium, and there should always be a slight simmer. You want the mixture to be cooking but not boiling, or it will get gummy and cook too fast.
  • Continue to add miso broth, stirring to incorporate, until the rice is al dente — cooked through but still has a slight bite. This whole process should only take 15-20 minutes (time based on original batch size // adjust if altering to make more or less).
  • Taste and adjust flavor as needed, adding more salt to taste or maple syrup (optional) to enhance the pumpkin flavor.
  • CRISPY SAGE (optional): Heat oil in a small skillet or saucepan over medium heat. Add sage and a healthy pinch of salt and sauté for a few minutes to brown the sage slightly (this allows the flavor to deepen). Be careful not to let it burn.
  • To serve, divide risotto between serving bowls and garnish with crispy sage (optional).
  • Best when fresh, though leftovers will keep covered in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop over medium heat, adding vegetable broth or water as needed to rehydrate. Not freezer friendly.



*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated without optional ingredients.

Nutrition (1 of 4 servings)

Serving: 1 serving Calories: 321 Carbohydrates: 54.9 g Protein: 6.3 g Fat: 7.8 g Saturated Fat: 1 g Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.8 g Monounsaturated Fat: 4.9 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 651 mg Potassium: 83 mg Fiber: 6 g Sugar: 6.9 g Vitamin A: 11281 IU Vitamin C: 6.1 mg Calcium: 45 mg Iron: 1.8 mg

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My Rating:

  1. VeganChef says

    I love Minimalist Baker and have made many delicious recipes from the site. This risotto was not one of them. When I read the recipe, I wondered whether it would have enough flavor, but the recipe had highly favorable ratings, although from a small number of people, so I decided to give it a try.

    I had to cook the risotto for twice as long as the recipe recommends, 40 minutes instead of 15-20. The recipe just doesn’t have much flavor at all. I would not have made this, if I had had the opportunity to taste it first. :)

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Bummer. We’re so sorry you didn’t enjoy this one. Would you mind sharing what brand of miso and pumpkin you were using? Did you include the sage topping?

  2. Veronica says

    This recipe is amazing, really easy and delicious. I did it with coliflower rice instead of the grain and it was perfect. I didn’t have leeks nor sage so I used onions and kale. It was a success!

  3. Tori says

    I have never successfully cooked rice in my life, let alone a risotto, so I was pretty nervous to try this one, but it turned out so good! Creamy and delicious and perfect for a cold evening next to the fireplace!

  4. Annette says

    This was amazing! I was talking with my daughter and we were discussing how we’ve followed your blog for years and have never had one bad recipe from you….ever!! Kuddos to you and thanks for sharing, you are our first choice when looking for a recipe for anything!! And fyi…miso is forever in my risotto recipes from here on out!! Yum!!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yay! Love to hear this. Thanks so much for the lovely review, Annette! So glad you both enjoy our recipes!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Jennifer! The texture will be slightly different and it may need to cook longer, but yes it will work!

  5. Trista says

    This is the best risotto ever! I make it in the instant pot, I just lightly saute the veggies then dump everything else in and cook on rice mode (approx 12 mins). It will look too moist when you open the lid but it thickens as it cools down after a few good stirs. My whole family loves it and keeps asking me to make it. I serve it along side your easy massaged kale salad with roasted chickpeas. My 4yr old can be picky and even she gobbles this up every time – salad included.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      AMAZING! We’re so glad you and your family have been enjoying it, Trista! Thank you so much for sharing! xo

  6. RunningPath says

    Before people start annoying you and asking if this can be made in the InstantPot, I want to say that I’m going to try this weekend and will report back on how it goes. I haven’t made risotto on the stovetop since I found out how easy and good it is in the InstantPot. So yeah, will report back on my attempt.

      • RunningPath says

        Okay, here’s the deal: it works great in the Instant Pot, as expected. I made the broth in a pot on the stove, as directed. Sautéed the leeks (more than called for, but I didn’t measure), garlic, sage, salt, rice as directed but in IP, deglazed with veggie broth (don’t keep wine around). Important note: for this quantity broth, you need 2 cups of arborio rice. Manual/regular (high pressure) for 5 minutes with a quick release. I did make the crispy sage which was excellent.

        This is very tasty but not very pumpkiny. I didn’t add the maple syrup but that may have brought out the pumpkin flavor. If I make it again I will try to think of other ways to make the pumpkin stronger. But my kids loved it so that’s a win.

        • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

          Thank you for sharing your experience! What brand of pumpkin did you use? We find Libby’s has the best pumpkin taste.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Monique, we haven’t tried risotto in the Instant Pot, but if it works well for other risotto recipes, we think this recipe would be fine too! Let us know if you try it!

      • Laura D says

        I made this tonight and we enjoyed it quite a bit. I did think it needed the 2 tsp maple syrup and extra salt, and I used regular white miso. My 9 month old was a huge fan and ate a ton lol, and my other kids liked it too including the very picky 3 year old so I’d consider it kid friendly.

    • Bianca says

      This was really tasty! I originally thought it was an interesting combination of flavors and decided to give it a try.

      I followed the recipe with only two substitutions. (1) I used thyme in the risotto because the grocery store was low on sage, (2) I didn’t add the maple syrup.

      Minor notes: I think I needed to add a bit more salt (but it was to taste and might’ve been increased with syrup). It took me a little longer than the recipe, but I’ve not made stovetop risotto before (normally do Ina Garten’s oven recipe).

      All in all, this recipe is a keeper. I might also add chunks of pumpkin or butternut squash in the future. My husband eats dairy and added a bit of goat cheese and said it was divine.

      I served it with a warmed kale and cranberry salad.

  7. Vanessa says

    Hi !! I’m really looking forward to try this delicious recipe (I’m a BIG fan of pumpkin – and of your recipes!) I can’t have wine, so can I substitute it with something else, for example vegetable broth ?