I’m going to talk about this yummy vegetarian Brown Rice Kale Risotto with Cheddar in a second (it’s naturally gluten-free, and has awesome nutrition stats: Cal: 290, Fiber: 3 g, Protein: 12 g.) But first I wanted to tell you about the latest adventures I’ve been having in the word of running.

Brown Rice Kale Risotto with Cheddar on Healthy Seasonal Recipes by Katie Webster

If you’ve been reading here for a while then you know I am a fitness fiend. Like Katie just ain’t right unless she got in her sweat session. Like I go from mean mommy to nice mommy in one hour flat. Like on rest days, I get into bed and have to refrain from squeezing my quads and grinding my teeth because I haven’t been set to straight by my daily workout. Like addicted. You get the picture.


But, I know many of you are here for the recipes. {Okay, all of you are here for the recipes. And you’re just here to figure out what to do with your CSA vegetables. Not to hear about quads.} So I try to not go on and on about working out too much.   But since fitness is a major part of my life, I do indulge myself in sharing the occasional updates here. Forgive me.

Brown Rice Kale Risotto with Cheddar on Healthy Seasonal Recipes by Katie Webster

Today is one of those days because I wanted to tell you about two really exciting pieces of news that are related to fitness. They are also about making an impact on the local community through running.


Because I am also chronically over committed, I don’t’ get to volunteer that much. Like ever. Like filing the giant pile of papers on the shelf directly to my left, volunteer work is one of the things that I really want to do, but don’t get to do.

Then last month, my friend Meg emailed me and straight-up asked me if I was willing to volunteer as a coach for the local chapter of Girls On The Run. I guess I all needed was a tiny nudge, and I agreed to do it. {Aside, would one of you nudge me about filing that pile of papers, please. Maybe a nudge is all I need for that pile too!}


I went to the Girls on the Run coach training, and even did CPR training. I am all in! And scared.

Brown Rice Kale Risotto with Cheddar on Healthy Seasonal Recipes by Katie Webster

Just thinking ahead to leading a team of 3rd, 4th and 5th grade girls through the process of finding their inner strength and training for a 5k makes me well up with emotion.


I have been full of doubt that I am capable of teaching kids this age. Girls ages 9 to 11 are smart and observant and I have no clue how to lead them. Give me a room of adult BodyPumpers and I am all good. But tweens??? Yikes! Give me strength. Thankfully the curriculum is all laid out for the coaches and I have three other coaches whom are all amazing ladies.

Brown Rice Kale Risotto with Cheddar on Healthy Seasonal Recipes by Katie Webster

The second piece of running news is that I was accepted onto the Cabot Fit Team again this year. I have participated in the team two other years. You can read about my past experiences running with the Cabot Fit Team here and here. I am thrilled to be able to do so again this year. The Cabot Fit Team is made up of health-focused bloggers, social media mavens and Cabot dairy farmers. We run a road race together and to increase awareness about nutrition and exercise. This year we’ll be running the Middlebury Maple Run on May 1st. How could I not be a part of this event? Maple + Cheddar+ Blogging + Fitness! All of my loves in one!

Brown Rice Kale Risotto with Cheddar on Healthy Seasonal Recipes by Katie WebsterSpeaking of Cheddar, let’s talk about this Brown Rice Kale Risotto with Cheddar. {Like that segue? Slick huh. 😉 } I have been trying to figure out how to make this recipe work for weeks, and it really was not easy. It’s gone through a lot of iterations. It started out being the poster child for earnest vegetarian hippy food of yore. I wasn’t going to sell anyone on brown rice, kale or a meatless main with the way this tasted. It gradually has gotten better and better. The last test thankfully worked great and the family gave it the thumbs up that it’s ready to share with you guys.

The key? Cheddar and a touch of butter.

Brown Rice Kale Risotto with Cheddar on Healthy Seasonal Recipes by Katie Webster

When I swapped out the Parmesan and used a cheddar instead, it became much more creamy. More like white rice risotto, less like hippy food. And I added in 2 tablespoons of butter to finish it. Yeah. It had to happen. It really is a delicious result and made all the difference. And don’t worry I didn’t go crazy with either the cheddar and butter. Just enough to turn brown rice and kale from earnest hippy blah to creamy delicious comfort food.

Check out the nutrition stats: Cal: 290, Fiber: 3 g, Protein: 12 g.


Do you do volunteer work?

Have your daughters (or you) been involved in Girls on the Run?

Are you a runner?

Do you need a daily workout?

What comes to mind when I say earnest vegetarian hippy food?


For more like this, check out this Ultimate Guide to Kale! 

Brown Rice Kale Risotto with Cheddar on Healthy Seasonal Recipes by Katie Webster

brown rice kale risotto with cheddar

  • Author: Katie Webster
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 8 cups 1x
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: Italian


Brown Rice Kale Risotto with Cheddar is a healthy gluten-free and vegetarian main course.



  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth (or vegetable broth for vegetarian option)
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, finely chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ cup short grain brown rice
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 6 cups shredded Lacinato or curly kale
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar
  • Grated Parmesan cheese for serving


  1. Bring chicken broth to a gentle simmer in a medium saucepan.
  2. Heat oil in a sauté pan or large straight sided skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook, stirring often, until the onion is softened and jut starting to brown, 3 to 5 minutes. Add carrots, celery, thyme, pepper and salt and cook, stirring often until the celery is bright green, about 4 minutes.
  3. Stir in rice and cook, stirring, until the rice starts to turn opaque in spots, 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Add wine, and cook, stirring often until the wine is almost completely evaporated, about 90 seconds. Ladle 3 cups of the broth into the rice, and stir to combine. Cover the remaining 1 cup broth and keep warm. Bring the rice mixture to a simmer. Cover, adjust heat to keep the liquid at a steady simmer and cook until the rice has absorbed most of the broth, about 35 minutes.
  5. Bring the remaining 1 cup broth to a simmer. Remove lid from rice, increase heat to medium and stir in the remaining 1 cup broth and kale. Continue cooking, stirring often until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is creamy and tender, 8 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in butter until melted. Add cheddar and stir until melted. Serve hot with Parmesan on top if desired.


  • Serving Size: 1 1/3 cup
  • Calories: 290
  • Sugar: 2.5
  • Sodium: 407
  • Fat: 16 g
  • Saturated Fat: 3.5
  • Carbohydrates: 23
  • Fiber: 3
  • Protein: 12



risotto photo collage with text