Chicken and Sweetcorn Risotto

17 Sep 2023

This savoury rice dish is a popular family dish in Italy, it is cheap and easy to make for lots of people.


1 medium onion
2 cloves garlic
5 sprigs rosemary
½ roasted chicken OR 2 cooked chicken breasts
1 x 340g can sweetcorn
1 lemon
200g risotto rice (Arborio is easiest to find)
800ml boiling water
1 reduced-salt chicken stock cube
200ml semi-skimmed milk
1 x 15ml spoon vegetable oil
1 x 5ml spoon ground black pepper
25g Parmesan style cheese OR 50g Cheddar cheese (optional)


Weighing scales
Chopping board
2 x Sharp knife
Garlic crusher
Scissors (optional)
Mixing bowl
Can opener
Juice squeezer
Small bowl
Measuring jug
Wooden spoon
Large non-stick saucepan
Pan stand
Tasting spoon


  1. Peel and finely chop the onion.
  2. Peel and crush the garlic.
  3. Using your fingers, strip all the leaves off the rosemary, then with the knife or a pair of scissors, chop the leaves into fine pieces. Throw away the stalks.
  4. On a separate chopping board, pick all the meat off your chicken bones and put the meat in the mixing bowl. Don’t forget the lovely juicy bits on the underside. Try not to let any gristle or skin get into the bowl with the meat.
  5. Open the can of sweetcorn and drain.
  6. Cut the lemon in half and squeeze the juice into a small bowl.
  7. Measure 800ml boiling water into the measuring jug. Crumble in the stock cube and stir to dissolve. Add 200ml milk and stir.
  8. Heat the vegetable oil in the saucepan and add the onion. Cook on a low heat for 2 minutes.
  9. Add the garlic, rosemary and black pepper and cook for a further 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  10. Pour the rice into the saucepan and stir carefully for 1 more minute.
  11. Keeping the hob on a low heat, start adding the stock and milk mixture. Add 100ml at a time and stir until all the liquid has been soaked in before adding the next 100ml.
  12. After you have added the first 500ml, add in the chicken and the sweetcorn, then continue to add the rest of the liquid as before.
  13. When you have added the last of the stock, add the lemon juice and give it one last stir. This time you don’t want all the liquid absorbed as the perfect risotto is a bit runny.
  14. Grate the cheese and sprinkle over the risotto (optional).

Skills used include: Weighing, measuring, peeling, chopping, crushing, grating, squeezing, boiling/simmering and frying.

Top Tips

  • For vegetarians, leave out the chicken and swap the chicken stock cube for a vegetable stock cube.
  • You need to keep stirring risotto as risotto rice has lots of starch, which is released when it is stirred. It is the starch that makes this dish creamy and soft.
  • Stir gently to prevent breaking up the chicken too much.
  • It is easier to get the meat off the chicken bones when it is warm (but not too hot!)

Something to try next time

  • You could swap the rosemary for thyme or oregano.
  • Risotto is an ideal meal to use up leftovers. Finely slice a couple of mushrooms or some courgette and add at step 9. Add some frozen peas or cooked broccoli at step 13. Grill a rasher of bacon and crumble on top of your risotto.
  • Chop 300g of mixed vegetables into bite-sized chunks (try courgettes, peppers, parsnips or butternut squash). Mix with 1 x 15ml spoon of olive oil and 1 x 5ml spoon of ground cinnamon and chopped rosemary, thyme or oregano. Roast on a baking tray in an oven preheated to 200°C/180°C fan or gas mark 6 for 20 minutes, until soft and beginning to brown. Add to the rice at step 14.

Prepare now, eat later

  • To save time have the chicken ready to add to the rice.
  • To use any leftover rice, cool rice quickly (within 1 hour), refrigerate and use within 24 hours. Reheat until piping hot. Do not reheat rice more than once.