Pumpkin Risotto with Bacon (Instant Pot)

Pumpkin Risotto with Bacon is an easy Instant Pot risotto with creamy pumpkin and crumbled bacon.  It’s the easiest risotto ever!

pumpkin risotto instant pot plated with crumbled bacon

It’s hard to believe that I began recipe testing this pumpkin risotto recipe last year and I’m finally sharing it with you today.

I fully intended to post it last year because we love this recipe, but other priorities got in the way.  

I made the recipe a few times this year, but was unable to photograph it until a few weeks ago.  I hate when that happens!

I hope you’re as excited about this pumpkin risotto as we are.  My boys literally inhale it, which makes this a big dinner win!

overhead shot of instant pot pumpkin risotto with crumbled bacon

Pumpkin risotto with bacon (Instant Pot)

This Instant Pot risotto is so easy to make, and it’s every bit as creamy and delicious as traditional risotto.

The addition of fresh pumpkin puree gives this risotto plenty of fall appeal.  Isn’t the color gorgeous?  

I added some freshly chopped sage and a dash of nutmeg to this risotto for a nice background flavor, but the bacon definitely takes it over the top.

The crispy bacon adds texture, umami and a pop of color.  

Everything is better with bacon, right? 🙂close up of pumpkin risotto instant pot topped with crumbled bacon

How to make pumpkin risotto

Risotto has been one of my favorite dishes since the first time I tried it.  While classic risotto is fairly easy to make, standing in front of the stove stirring it until it’s done isn’t exactly ideal.

I made this instant pot mushroom risotto almost 2 years ago, and I swore I’d never make risotto on the stove top again.

And so far, I haven’t. 🙂

This pumpkin risotto recipe is so easy to make and only involves a few simple steps:

  • Sauté the bacon in the Instant Pot for 10 minutes until crisp.  Remove with a slotted spoon and place on a plate lined with a paper towel.
  • Add the onion to the bacon grease in the Instant Pot and sauté for 5 minutes until softened.  
  • Add the garlic and cook 30 seconds longer.
  • Add the sage, nutmeg, arborio rice, vegetable stock and pumpkin puree and stir well to combine.  
  • Secure the lid on the Instant Pot, close the venting valve, and cook on High Pressure for 8 minutes.  The Instant Pot will take 10-15 minutes to come to pressure, then will begin cooking time.
  • When the cooking time is done, quick release the pressure and remove the lid when safe to do so.  Stir in the grated parmesan cheese and salt and pepper, to taste.
  • Serve the risotto with the crumbled bacon, more grated parmesan and chopped parsley if desired.

pumpkin risotto instant pot process collage

What’s the best pumpkin to use for pumpkin risotto?

I’ve tried this recipe with both fresh and canned pumpkin, and fresh pumpkin made all the difference. 

Fresh pumpkin has so much more flavor than canned puree, so I strongly recommend making your own.

The best fresh pumpkins to use in this risotto are as follows:

  • sugar pumpkin
  • kabocha squash
  • red kuri squash
  • other edible heirloom varieties — ask your farmers!

Just be sure not use big carving pumpkins as they lack flavor and don’t contain a large amount of flesh. 

Check out my post on how to make pumpkin puree in the Instant Pot for more details.

If you prefer to roast your pumpkin in the oven, see my instructions for this Roasted Pumpkin Soup.

Recipe tips and substitutions

  • Fresh pumpkin puree makes a big difference in this dish. The prep time for this recipe does not include the prep for homemade pumpkin puree as that is included in a separate recipe.  There’s no need to purée the pumpkin in a food processor or strain the excess liquid from it.  Just mash with a potato masher or fork and add it to the risotto!  Small chunks of pumpkin are totally fine in this dish.
  • Make homemade pumpkin puree in advance to make this risotto go very quickly!
  • Omit the bacon to make this pumpkin risotto vegetarian and top with toasted pepitas!

angled shot of pumpkin risotto instant pot on a plate with crumbled bacon

Love your Instant Pot?  See all of my Instant Pot recipes.

More savory pumpkin recipes you’ll love:

Pumpkin chorizo chili

Pumpkin chili mac

Pumpkin curry

Pumpkin pasta by Minimalist Baker

Pumpkin soup

 

Pumpkin Risotto with Bacon (Instant Pot)

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 23 minutes
Additional Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 43 minutes

Pumpkin Risotto with Bacon is an easy, Instant Pot risotto with creamy pumpkin and crumbled bacon.  It's the easiest risotto ever!

Pumpkin Risotto with Bacon (Instant Pot)

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Press the Sauté button on the Instant Pot. Add the bacon and cook for 10 minutes or until crisp. Remove from the pot with a slotted spoon and place on a plate lined with a paper towel.
  2. Add the onion to the bacon grease in the pot and cook for 5 minutes until softened. Add the garlic and cook 30 seconds more.
  3. Add the sage, nutmeg, arborio rice, vegetable stock and pumpkin to the Instant Pot and stir until combined.
  4. Secure the lid and close the venting valve. Cook at high pressure for 8 minutes. The Instant Pot will take 10-15 minutes to come to pressure, then will begin the cooking time. Quick release the pressure when the cooking time has finished.
  5. Remove the lid and stir in the parmesan cheese and salt and pepper, to taste.
  6. Serve immediately topped with the crumbled bacon and chopped parsley. Enjoy!

Notes

  • Fresh pumpkin puree makes a big difference in this dish. The prep time for this recipe does not include the prep for homemade pumpkin puree as that is included in a separate recipe.  There's no need to purée the pumpkin in a food processor or strain the excess liquid from it.  Just mash with a potato masher or fork and add it to the risotto!  Small chunks of pumpkin are totally fine in this dish.
  • Make homemade pumpkin puree in advance to make this risotto go very quickly!
  • Omit the bacon to make this pumpkin risotto vegetarian and top with toasted pepitas!

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