A creamy slow cooker mushroom risotto made entirely in your slow cooker – no browning in a pan required! This easy comforting recipe is packed with juicy, buttery mushrooms and so much flavor you won’t believe how simple it is.

Let’s make mushroom risotto in the slow cooker!

I have for you today a big batch of risotto that is super flavorful, creamy and absolutely packed with juicy, buttery mushrooms. And it did not require any time standing over the pot, or even any sauteing, because it was made entirely in the slow cooker. Yay!

Other things to know about this risotto:

  • We use a lot of mushrooms. It’s extra mushroomy! But we don’t need any dried mushrooms. They’re great and all, but they’re expensive, so I brought flavor in other ways to keep costs down.
  • This is a really easy way to make risotto, but it’s not a “dump and go” situation because risotto does need to be timed right. And all slow cookers are a little different, so the first time you make this you will need to pay particular attention.
  • Slow cooker risotto may surprise you! I did not feel like there was any compromise on texture. Since it’s not been stirred a lot, it won’t release as much creamy starch, but the (optional) cream kind of compensates for that.
  • It tastes great with some frozen peas or fresh spinach thrown in at the end. You can treat this as a base recipe and add to it as you wish!

Since I tested this so, so many times I have a lot to say about it, but you can scroll to the recipe card if you’re ready to roll. Just know that if you have any questions, scroll back up because I may have answered them.

How to make mushroom risotto without pan frying the mushrooms first

I noticed that other recipes for mushroom risotto in the slow cooker involve browning the mushrooms and onions in a pan and then transferring them to the slow cooker with the rice. I prefer my slow cooker recipes to be 100% cooked in the slow cooker where possible, so my process involves slow cooking the mushrooms on their own first, before adding the rice into the dish.

And honestly, this way is soooo much better. Slow cooker mushrooms don’t get browned but they stew in their juices, and when combined with wine, butter, onions, garlic and herbs it is impressive how flavorful they become. They are robust and maintain their texture, and they stay really juicy inside. Best of all, that liquid they stew in during the cooking process is trapped in the slow cooker and becomes part of the broth the risotto rice cooks in.

Important to Know: Your risotto’s cook time can vary…

Once you add the rice to the slow cooker, it might be anywhere from 45 minutes to 90 minutes before it is cooked. There are two variables here.

  1. Your slow cooker model. Temperatures can vary quite a bit and some will cook slower than others. My own slow cooker is a 12 year old Crockpot Digital which is on the hotter side. A good sense check is to look and see whether the mushroom juices are actually bubbling around the side of the pan after they’ve cooked for an hour or two – if they are, you’ve probably got a fairly hot slow cooker too and you should expect yours to be ready in the lower end of the cook time given.
  2. Whether you add the stock hot or cold. When it comes time to add the rice and the stock to cook the risotto in, the pan is already as hot as it can get. So if you add the broth hot (because you’ve dissolved stock cubes in boiling water, for example) you are going to maintain the temperature of the slow cooker pan and the rice will start cooking very quickly. If you are adding cold stock, you are lowering the temperature of the pan and the slow cooker needs to heat it all back up again, which means the rice takes longer to took.

For me, using a fairly hot slow cooker model, and adding my stock boiling, my risotto is consistently done in 45 minutes… and leaning towards overcooked if I leave it any more than an hour!

Ingredient Notes, Substitutions and Adaptations

  • Mushrooms: I am using chestnut mushrooms here, which I quarter, but you can use whatever you want. Portobellos cut into cubes would work too. Add some shiitakes or wild mushrooms if you like the flavor, but you don’t need to for flavor’s sake because I designed this recipe to work with just plain chestnut mushrooms.
  • Shallots: are my fave choice of onion but you can use anything.
  • Garlic: there is a lot of garlic in this recipe, so I generally cheat and use pre-chopped frozen or jarred garlic for this one!
  • Salted butter: or unsalted + extra seasoning.
  • Dried herbs: I use thyme and parsley, which are a good neutral base flavor. You can use something else if you prefer.
  • Dry white wine: You really, really want the wine for flavor if at all possible. I love a buttery Chardonnay here but you can use anything. If you need to leave it out, swap in vegetable stock and consider a little pour of balsamic or some lemon juice for the mushrooms to cook in.
  • Arborio rice: We really need arborio rice for that starchy creamy texture. You could try a long grain rice if you must, but I can’t vouch for the results.
  • Vegetable stock or broth: I just rehydrate a couple of bouillon cubes.
  • Cheese: I use a generic Italian hard cheese (parmesan style, but without the animal rennet so it’s suitable for vegetarians). Anything parmesan or pecorino style should work here.
  • Cream: is optional. I tested this recipe several times without cream, and I loved it. But then I tried it with cream and it was just… even better. But you don’t need it.
  • Chives: or parsley would work too. It’s nice to have a hit of fresh green herb, but not essential if you haven’t got anything.
  • Lemon: Lemon wedges for squeezing on top are the perfect finishing touch, but not a deal breaker so don’t worry if you don’t have any.

Q: Is it ok to slow cook with wine?

You may have heard that slow cooking with wine is a no-no, because the alcohol can’t burn off or reduce in the same way in a slow cooker. It’s a valid concern, but I find it works out fine as long as you cook the mushrooms for long enough, 3-4 hours on the higher heat setting. I once only precooked the mushrooms for 2 hours, and I did find the flavor a little harsher (still fine though).

You should also check out…

Slow Cooker Mushroom Risotto

A creamy slow cooker mushroom risotto made entirely in your slow cooker – no browning in a pan required! This easy comforting recipe is packed with juicy, buttery mushrooms and so much flavor you won't believe how simple it is.
5 from 1 rating


  • 2 lbs (900 g) chestnut mushrooms, de-stemmed and quartered – weight is before removing stems
  • 3 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp garlic, chopped or minced
  • ½ cup (125 g) salted butter
  • 1 tbsp dried thyme
  • 2 tsp dried parsley
  • cup (160 ml) white wine
  • 1.5 cups (300 g) arborio rice
  • 3 cups (700 ml) vegetable stock
  • ¾ cup (85 g) Italian hard cheese
  • ½ cup (120 ml) heavy (double) cream
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 small bunch chives
  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges


  • First, turn your slow cooker onto HIGH and add the butter to the dish to give it a head start on softening while you prep the remaining ingredients. We will prep and add ingredients as we go along.
    1/2 cup salted butter
  • Slice and add the shallots.
    3 shallots
  • Wipe down, de-stem, and chop your mushrooms, adding them to the pan as you go. The slow cooker might be almost full – that is OK!
    2 lbs chestnut mushrooms
  • Add the garlic and herbs and salt and pepper to taste. Pour the wine over the top.
    2 tbsp garlic, 1 tbsp dried thyme, 2 tsp dried parsley, 2/3 cup white wine, salt and pepper
  • Give everything a good mix through, ensuring that the butter (which should have softened a little by now) and wine are well distributed through the pan.
  • Cook the mushrooms for 3-4 HOURS on high. They should have reduced in size and created a buttery, juicy sauce.
  • Add the arborio rice and vegetable stock, then cover and cook for 45 minutes on high before checking in.
    1.5 cups arborio rice, 3 cups vegetable stock
  • Give it a big stir, and try some of the rice to assess whether it's cooked through. You want the rice to be soft but a little al dente. If it's not there yet, keep cooking and check in regularly. There should still be a bit of liquid in the pan too, but if feels like it's drying out, add more stock.
    Your final cook time will depend on your slow cooker model and how hot the pan was when you started cooking the rice. If you add the stock boiling it will be quicker than if you poured stock from a carton in the fridge (because the whole pan will need to get up to the right heat level again).
  • Once the rice is cooked, give it a big stir through and add the cheese, chives and the cream. Allow it to sit uncovered (on "keep warm") for 5-10 minutes to warm through. If the sauce seems overly runny, stir through a couple of times and keep the lid off. It will soon thicken.
    3/4 cup Italian hard cheese, 1/2 cup heavy (double) cream, 1 small bunch chives
  • Serve immediately, with additional chives and lemon wedges for topping if desired.
    1 lemon


IMPORTANT: This was tested in a 4.7 litre / 5 quart slow cooker so if yours is smaller, you will need to scale down the recipe.
Calories: 501kcal, Carbohydrates: 51g, Protein: 13g, Fat: 26g, Saturated Fat: 16g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 7g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 72mg, Sodium: 341mg, Potassium: 830mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 5g, Vitamin A: 918IU, Vitamin C: 3mg, Calcium: 220mg, Iron: 4mg


Slow cooker 4.7 litre or 5 quart