Creamy Parmesan Polenta

Polenta is akin to Southern grits, so even though it’s Italian in origin, it resonates with Americans as stick-to-your ribs comfort food. Its thick, creamy, starchiness is perfect as a bed for rich braises and stews, or garnished with a sauce or vegetables that play off its nutty, minerally notes, polenta itself can the basis for a substantial meal.

Traditionally, polenta requires constant stirring for up to an hour. With the novel techniques this recipe employs, you’ll have a potful of flavorful polenta with far less work and much less time than if you had cooked the polenta the traditional way. A simple topping of sautéed cherry tomatoes and fresh mozzarella cheese turns the polenta into a hearty first course or a light main course (that’s vegetarian, to boot).

Total Cooking Time: 75

Preparation Time: 30

Active Cooking Time: 45

Make Ahead: Serve immediately

Yield: 4 servings

Difficulty: Easy

Core Equipment

The right tool can make or break a recipe. At America's Test Kitchen, we test kitchen equipment in search of brands that offer the best value and performance. Since we accept no advertising, our ratings are unbiased. Check out our recommended products for the equipment you'll need in this course.
  • Amco Houseworks Professional Performance 4-Piece Measuring Cup Set

    This stainless steel set measured with near-perfect accuracy and offered moderate weight, great balance, and long, level, clearly m... read more
  • Pyrex 2-Cup Measuring Cup

    The unbeatable traditional version of the Pyrex Liquid Measuring Cup is back on the market. read more
  • Cuisipro Stainless Steel Measuring Spoons Set

    Comfortable and accurate with long handles, this set nests nicely. The rim of each spoon is flush with the handle so it is easy to s... read more
  • Masamoto VG-10 Gyutou, 8.2"

    “Feels fantastic when you pick it up: comfortable, light, ready.” “A dream” for cutting up chicken and dicing onion, with its “very ... read more
  • SCI Bamboo Wood Cooking Spoon

    This light, smooth bamboo spoon was broad enough to churn bulky stews, yet small enough to rotate a single chunk of beef without dis... read more
  • Microplane Classic Zester Grater

    Breezed through all four tasks, producing piles of cheese, chocolate, zest, and ginger with minimal effort. read more

All purchases fulfilled by Prices subject to change.