Arancini: breaded and fried balls of risotto stuffed with cheese!

Arancini – Stuffed, Breaded and Fried Risotto Balls

breaded and fried balls of risotto stuffed with cheese!

If I’m thinking ahead, when I make any Risotto, like my Roasted Red Pepper & Shrimp Risotto or my Asparagus Risotto, I’ll make a little extra just to make these wonderful little gems called Arancini.

Arancini: breaded and fried balls of risotto stuffed with cheese!
Arancini: breaded and fried balls of risotto stuffed with cheese!

Basically a croquette, the leftover Risotto is transformed into a crunchy, crispy creamy delight, stuffed with almost any filling one could imagine.

Here in the States, it’s usually stuffed with Mozzarella, which yields lovely strings of cheese as they are bitten into, and Arancini are usually served with Marinara. In Italy, these little balls are stuffed with olives, salami, prosciutto, or vegetables such as peas or mushrooms.

Arancini: breaded and fried balls of risotto stuffed with cheese!
Arancini – breaded & fried risotto balls stuffed with Mozzarella cheese. These are served with Red Onion Marmalade.

I like to make these cheese stuffed Arancini and serve them with Red Onion Marmalade, a heavenly combination and such a nice change. If you’d like to go with a Marinara, I highly recommend this quick little Marinara from Cook’s Illustrated.

A recipe for Arancini is dependent on how much Risotto you have and how large you wish to make your Arancini. A rule of thumb, for golf ball sized Arancini:  For every cup of Risotto, you’ll need about 2/3 cup of bread crumb, an egg, 1/4 cup of flour and a small amount of filling. You’ll want about a teaspoon or so in each. Feel free to scale this recipe up or down.

Arancini: breaded and fried balls of risotto stuffed with cheese!
Arancini – breaded & fried risotto balls stuffed with Mozzarella cheese.

Arancini di Riso

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

  • 3 cups cold Risotto
  • 2 cups of bread crumbs
  • 3/4 cup of flour
  • 3 eggs, beaten with a little water or milk (a tablespoon or so)
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Chopped Parsley or other herbs, optional
  • Filling of choice:  Cheese: Mozzarella or Provolone or salami, sausage, vegetables, pitted olives, etc. Feel free to be creative.

Using wet hands, place about ⅓ to ½ cup risotto in your palm. Add filling and enclose tightly inside the risotto, rolling it between your palms to form a ball and encase the filling. Set on a tray and continue forming until the Risotto is gone.

Set up a breading station with the flour, eggs and bread crumbs each in a separate dish. Season each with salt and pepper and herbs of your choice, if desired. Dip each arancini ball first in flour, then egg, then bread crumbs. Set on a rack over a tray to catch drips and crumbs. Refrigerate for at least 10 minutes and up to 30.

Bring about 1 1/2 inches of oil up to 375 degrees, fry each ball for about 3 minutes per side until golden brown, crunchy and the cheese (if using) has melted. Remove and place back on the rack. If making a large amount, keep warm in a 200 degree oven.

Serve plain, with a sauce of your choice, or with my favorite addition, Red Onion Marmalade.

Kitchen & Cooking Hacks:

Whenever you’re having a party and don’t have a lot of fancy dishes, think about using paper cones. They can be discretely taped and made out of all kinds of things from clear glassine plastic to paper bags.

Paper Cones make great dishes! For fried things, candy, popcorn...and this Arancini.
Paper Cones make great dishes! For fried things, candy, popcorn…and this Arancini.

{Heritage Recipe}

Note: Reposted from 2012

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I’ll be sharing this dish at Fiesta Friday, cohosted this week by Ai @ Ai Made It For You and Petra @ Food Eat Love. Stop over, visit their blogs – I know there are a lot of special dishes this week!

28 thoughts on “Arancini – Stuffed, Breaded and Fried Risotto Balls”

  1. Wow! these look super Mollie– love the photo with them nestled in the paper cone. We had a similar treat in Spain– croquettas made with ham or chicken… they were always a favorite of ours. Would love to try these! Happy weekend coming up!! xox

  2. Pingback: GOOD LUCK
    1. Hi Bethanie, the marmalade is really like a pickle, all than vinegar keeps it fresh in a clean, tightly closed jar for a long time. So many uses for the marmalade, too. Hamburgers, grilled cheese, etc.!

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