Arancini- Fried Rice Balls

These fried rice balls are utterly addicting. Considered street food in Italy they make a fantastic hand held appetizer for a casual meal. Or you can dress them up with a marinara sauce and serve them on a plate as a first course.

Arancini- Fried Rice Balls 

Print This Recipe Total time Yield 16Source Adapted from Bell’alimentoPublished

Makes 16


  • 2 cup leftover risotto
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 8 ounce fresh mozzarella, cut into ½‑inch cubes
  • 1 cup flour, or more as needed
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup prepared dried bread crumbs, or more as needed
  • vegetable oil for frying


Into a deep sided pan {or dutch oven} add approximately 2″ vegetable oil. You may alternatively use a deep fryer. Heat oil to 375 degrees.

While the oil is heating, add 1 beaten egg and risotto to a medium bowl. Stir to combine. Set aside.

Set up breading station with three shallow dishes. Add flour into 1st dish, along with a pinch or 2 of salt and some black pepper to taste. Place remaining egg into 2nd dish and breadcrumbs into 3rd dish.

To make risotto balls: Scoop approximately 1 ½ to 2 tablespoons of risotto into your hand. Form into a ball and, using your thumb, indent a well in the ball about as deep as its center. Place 1 cube of mozzarella into the well, close the opening and re-shape into a ball. Adding more risotto if needed to cover the mozzarella. Continue until either you run out of risotto or cheese. You should bet about 16 balls.

Using your left hand roll a completed ball in flour, then transfer to your right hand and roll it in egg, then breadcrumbs. Transfer breaded ball to a tray. This left hand then right hand method will keep one hand relatively clean, and not contaminate the egg mixture with flour or breadcrumbs. Continue until all the balls are breaded.

Place breaded balls into hot oil, taking care not to crowd the pan, fry in batches if necessary. Fry for approximately 2 minutes or until golden. Transfer balls to a plate lined with paper towels. Serve while still warm.