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Arancine: A Sicilian Snack

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Arancine: A Sicilian Snack

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  • Author: Carrie Pacini
  • Category: Italian Inspired


Arancine “little oranges” are fried stuffed rice balls that look like little oranges because of their golden crust.

They are not complicated to make you just need to have time for the prep.

You can stuff them with all sorts of things like cheese, peas, and prosciutto and chopped vegetables. You will find them all over Sicily served as snacks in bars and cafes.

I like to serve them hot with a chilled glass of of champagne (brut).

Note this recipe only has the filling with mozzarella but you can also add prosciutto, peas or ham to this mix. Consider this the basic recipe for Arancine.

I’ve even used a blue cheese before that was really tasty!



2 cups of Chicken Stock
1 cup of Arborio Rice (Medium Grain White Rice)
1 Tablespoon of unsalted butter
Salt to taste
1/2 cup of Grated Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
1 Whole Egg, plus 1 egg yolk
1 Cup of All-Purpose Flour
2 Cups of Bread Crumbs
3 Egg Whites
2 oz of Mozzarella cheese Chopped

For Frying: Vegetable or light olive oil


1. In a saucepan over high heat add the stock and bring to a boil.

2. Stir in the rice, butter, salt. Reduce the heat to low and cover. Cook until tender about 20 minutes.

3. Transfer the rice to a bowl and mix in the parmigiano cheese and let cool slightly.

4. After the rice is slightly cool add in the whole egg and the egg yolk and let it cool completely.

5. In 2 shallow wide bowls (or 2 plates) separate your flour and breadcrumbs.

6. In a shallow bowl beat the egg whites.

7. Next moisten your hands with water and scoop up a palm size full of the rice mixture and flatten out in the palm of your hand.

8. In the center add the fresh mozzarella and then mold the rice over the filling. You can also add other things like prosciutto as well!

9. Now with your hands shape the mixture into a ball and roll it in flour and then in the egg whites finishing them off in the breadcrumbs. Place on a rack and let them set for about 10 to 15 minutes.

10. Continue making the rest of the rice balls until the rice is used up.

Now for the Frying!

11. In a heavy sauce pan pour enough oil to cover the bottom of the rice balls.

12. Once the oil is heated up (starts to sizzle) with a slotted spoon gently lower a few of the rice balls in to the pan without crowding them.

13. Fry until golden all over about 1. 5 to 2 minutes.

14. Transfer them with your slotted spoon to paper towels to drain.

15. After they are all fried you can keep warm in an oven on a low heat like 150 to 180 degrees. Serve them within the hour or you can serve them immediately on a warm plate.


Arancine Platter

Arancine Platter

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1 Comment

  • Reply
    Onigiri recipe
    April 7, 2012 at 12:49 am

    Rice balls are my favourite food! I like this recipe and will definitely try making these later, thanks!

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