Arancini are fried rice balls that are crunchy on the outside and creamy on the inside. They’re absolutely delicious and perfect for dipping in your favorite sauce. Arancini are great as an appetizer or snack!
Crunchy on the outside, creamy on the inside. What’s not to love? Whether you dip them in PESTO or MARINARA is up to you. I’m a dipper, so I’m all about that sauce. Besides enjoying them just because, these beauties make an amazing appetizer for any get together you may have coming up. You can even make them in advance and re-heat them prior to serving to save time.
WHAT ARE ARANCINI?
Arancini are a staple of Sicilian cuisine. They’re stuffed Italian rice balls that are dredged in flour, dipped in egg, coated with bread crumbs and then deep fried until golden. What’s not to love about that right?
WHAT INGREDIENTS DO I NEED TO MAKE ARANCINI?
You’ll need the following ingredients to make arancini at home (the following contains affiliate links. I earn from qualifying purchases).
- Chilled (cooked) risotto – preferably leftover. You can make a fresh batch specifically for arancini just note that it will need to be chilled prior to using.
- fresh mozzarella – I use ciliegine which are bite sized mozzarella balls.
- panko bread crumbs – you may substitute regular bread crumbs if you prefer.
- all purpose flour
- oil to fry
TIP: when frying use a thermometer to monitor your oil temperature.
DO YOU SERVE ARANCINI HOT OR COLD?
Arancini are best served warm, so that the stuffed cheese is ooey and gooey. Cheese pull anyone?
TIP: to RE-HEAT, simply preheat your oven to 350 degrees, place arancini balls on a baking sheet lined with a silpat or parchment paper and bake for 15 minutes.
MORE DELICIOUS RISOTTO RECIPES TO TRY
If you’re feeling inspired by this arancini recipe, you’ll love these other risotto recipes:
- Saffron Risotto
- Butternut Squash Risotto with Crispy Prosciutto
- Roasted Pumpkin Risotto with Pancetta
- Saffron Risotto Cakes
- 3 cups cooked risotto - chilled
- 8 ciligene mozzarella balls - halved
- 3 eggs - divided
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs - finely crushed
- kosher salt
- black pepper
- canola oil for frying
1. Into a large bowl add 1 beaten egg and cooked risotto. Stir to combine.
2. To make risotto balls: Scoop approximately 3 tablespoons of risotto into your hand (I find a cookie scoop works well). Form risotto into a ball.
3. Using your thumb make an indentation large enough to place mozzarella. Insert mozzarella into indentation and roll into ball, making sure that mozzarella is completely covered with risotto. Continue until all balls are formed. Place balls onto a half baking sheet lined with a silpat mat or parchment paper and transfer to refrigerator.
4. Set up breading station with three shallow dishes. Place flour, breadcrumbs and remaining eggs into separate dishes. Beat eggs. Season each dish with salt and pepper.
5. Remove balls from refrigerator. Roll balls in flour, then egg (shaking off excess), then breadcrumbs. Making sure they are completely coated in breadcrumbs. Return balls to half baking sheet and transfer to refrigerator while oil is heating.
6. Into a deep sided heavy bottom pan add approximately 2″ oil .Heat oil to 350 degrees.
7. Carefully place breaded balls into hot oil using a slotted spoon. Do NOT crowd pan, fry in batches. Fry for approximately 3 minutes OR until golden. Transfer balls to a plate lined with paper towels.
8. Serve warm with dipping sauce of choice.
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