Food Costing Article Part Two - Risotto


This is the second food cost article I am writing. I was amazed myself with the last one which gave the result of saving over $1000 a year per person if you made the homemade cannelloni instead of buying it frozen in the supermarket. (Stats based on making the same dish everyday but you get my point)

I always planned on a second and here it goes. Today I will make and give you a recipe for homemade risotto as an alternative to just buying a packet microwave risotto.

First let’s get the costing out of the way from the pre bought side. This is simple this time, there is only one product that you would buy and that is the actual pre made risotto at Countdown they range from $3.43 for a just add water packet to $6.33 for one of those freshly made heat and eat vacuum packs.

So let’s compare with both of these prices and see what we can save making it from fresh.

The recipe I will make is a leek, lemon and chicken risotto and it is for 4 people.


Ingredients – Serves 4


320g Arborio Rice                                             320g = $1.47

1 Free Range Chicken Breast                       1 Breast = $5

25g Garlic                                                             25g = $0.57

1 Large Leek                                                       1 = $1.79

2 Lemons zested and juiced                        2 = $0.49

700ml Chicken or vegetable stock             Homemade from leftovers

100ml Oil (canola or similar)                         100ml = $0.42

Splash White wine (optional)                      You can use the lemon juice or if you have a little white wine hanging around use that.

200g Cream cheese                                         100g = $1.42

To taste Salt                                                       Taste = $0.03

To taste Pepper                                                                Taste = $0.03


TOTAL                                                                   Per Person = $2.81


So I did it. I managed to get the homemade risotto under budget beating the microwave version by $0.62c per person and the instant microwave version by a whooping $3.51! For the sake of this article though I knew I would easily beat the instant microwave version as they are premium items.


In the same style as the last food cost article let’s have a look at the yearly comparison. If I was to save 62c per day that would be a yearly saving of $226.30! Not as impressive as the previous food cost article where I saved a massive $1003.75! You can find that recipe and report here.


Here is the recipe and method again so you can make it yourself.


Ingredients – Serves 4


320g Arborio Rice

1 Free Range Chicken Breast

25g Garlic, minced

1 Large Leek, sliced and washed

2 Lemons zested and juiced

700ml Chicken or vegetable stock

100ml Oil (canola or similar)

Splash White wine (optional)

200g Cream cheese

To taste Salt

To taste Pepper



1. In a large pot add the canola oil and seal the chicken breast then add the garlic and leek which have been sliced before-hand until they are soft.


2. Next add the Arborio rice and combine until the fat has been soaked up and the grains are translucent.


3. Deglaze the pot with white wine and add hot stock 1/3 at a time.


4. Season and when the rice is cooked (may not need all the stock, be careful with the last 1/3) Pull the pan off the heat add the lemon zest and juice along with the cream cheese.


5. When you serve you may want to add a little reduced balsamic vinegar and some parmesan cheese.