This is a great time saver, and is nearly as good as the laborious version. Feel free to experiment with any ingredients to mix into the base recipe, the possibilities are endless (meat, veggies, herbs, etc.). I have listed a few of my favorites. Most ingredients can be added and cooked into the risotto. Some things are better stirred in after it is cooked. I have tried to list which ones I would add at the end in the directions. Please note: nutrition facts include the optional ingredients for all 4 variations.