Instant Pot French Onion Risotto

They say that things comes in threes.

It began with some French Onion Soup.

THEN, I took that soup and turned it into a chicken dish that was devoured ’round the world.

And NOW, we end this trilogy with a risotto that is so outrageously creamy, cheesy and full of that classic French Onion flavor.  Yes folks, FRENCH ONION RISOTTO has arrived – and it couldn’t be easier to make!

Risotto is basically the pasta of the rice world and, when combined with the broths and seasonings of your choice it is usually very creamy and rich in flavor – and this one’s no exception! I guarantee you this one will be one of your most requested and go-to sides (or meals) that will enter the rotation!

Here’s How I Made It!:

Well, seeing as it’s French Onion Risotto, we’ll start off with a couple of onions…

….sliced up into strands.

Now to the Instant Pot, add in some vegetable oil…

…and some butter.

…Melt them until they bubble and then add the onions.

And then stir the onions so they’re coated with the oil and butter.

Let stir and set for about 15 minutes…

…until it cooks down, softens and turns slightly browned in color.

Then, we’ll add in some Arborio rice (use this specific rice for a Risotto).

Stir the rice up with the onions, oil and butter.

Now let’s get down to business and add in some beef broth…

…red wine…

…black pepper…

…garlic powder…

…dried thyme…

…light brown sugar…

…kosher salt…

…Worcestershire sauce…

…and a bay leaf.

Stir everything up together, deglaze (scrape) the bottom of the pot for good measure, secure the lid and cook at high pressure.

When done, it’s gonna look and smell amazing.

Give everything a good stir and you’ll notice the rice will very quickly absorb the remaining liquid and thicken.

Fish out the bay leaf and discard.

Now we’ll make it super creamy and give it that signature French Onion touch by adding in some shredded Swiss (or Gruyere or whatever cheese you want).

Add it in batches…

…and then stir until all melded and SUPER creamy!

Serve some of this incredible risotto up…

And then send it home by taking some crispy fried onions

…and topping off each individual bowl with some.

Okay fine, a little more of that cheese too!



Get out your raspberry berets and accordions and make it a French Onion night!  Start with my French Onion Soup and then follow with my French Onion Chicken and serve this French Onion Risotto as a side!

Instant Pot French Onion Risotto
Yield: 6

Instant Pot French Onion Risotto

Instant Pot French Onion Risotto

You've may have learned I'm obsessed with French Onion everything right now. Risotto is no exception. Prepare ye, mon cherie!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 22 minutes
Total Time 27 minutes


  • 1 tbsp of vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp (1/4 of a stick) of salted butter
  • 1 sweet onion + 1 yellow onion, sliced into strands
  • 2 cups of Arborio rice (you must use this kind of rice to make a proper risotto)
  • 4.5 cups of Beef Broth (4.5 tsp of Beef Better Than Bouillon + 4.5 cups of water)
  • 1/2 cup of red wine
  • 2 tsp of light brown sugar
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon of kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of pepper
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1-2 cups (8 oz bag) of shredded Swiss or Gruyere cheese (or any melty cheese of your choice)
  • French’s Fried Onions, for topping


  1. Add the butter and oil to the Instant Pot.  Hit “Sauté” and adjust so it’s on the “High” or “More” setting
  2. Once the butter is melted and sizzling with the oil and the display reads “Hot,” add the onions and stir occasionally for about 15 minutes until they cook down, soften and become a little brown in color
  3. Add in the rice and stir well for about 45 seconds
  4. Add in the beef broth, red wine, light brown sugar, dried thyme, kosher salt, pepper, garlic powder, Worcestershire sauce and bay leaf. Stir well and deglaze (scrape) the bottom the pot with the mixing spoon to make sure no onions or rice have stuck to it
  5. Secure the lid and hit “Manual” or “Pressure Cook” High Pressure for 6 minutes.  Quick release when done and leave the pot on the “Keep Warm” setting
  6. Stir the broth up with the risotto when done and you’ll notice that it will thicken and absorb the remaining liquid very quickly.  Add in the shredded cheese in batches, starting with 1 cup and then add more to your content.  The more you add, the cheesier and creamier the risotto will be!
  7. Transfer to a serving bowl and plate.  Top with some of French’s Fried Onions and some remaining cheese
  8. Enjoy!

Jeffrey's Tips

Already made my amazing French Onion Soup and have leftovers?  You can just use that instead when adding to the rice and onions!

Want to make it vegetarian?  Sub vegetable broth for the beef broth!

Want to make it vegan?  Sub vegetable broth for the beef broth AND use dairy free cheese!

Want to make it a true French Onion-themed night?  Start with my French Onion Soup and then follow with my French Onion CFrench Onion Chickenicken and serve this French Onion Risotto as a side!

Reader Interactions


  1. Gregory Voutsinas

    A question about the French onion risotto. You are saying that if you already made the French onion soup you can use that along with the onions and the rice so are you saying use 4 1/2 cups of French onion soup?

  2. Jim

    Made this the other night, and it was fabulous! The only, and I mean only, difference was the cheese I used. I couldn’t find pre-shredded Swiss or Gruyere at my supermarket, so I use Italian mixed shredded cheese. I can’t imagine that it made much of a difference. Great recipe.

  3. Becky Louise Wicks

    My friends think I’m a domestic goddess/kitchen wizard thanks to you! I made this last night to a great chorus of “oh my god, mmmmmmm!!!” and we wound up scraping the pot for scraps. Will definitely be making this for everyone who visits from now on, and it was super simple to make, too! Thanks Jeff.

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