Rice Balls (Sicilian Arancini)

Sicilian rice balls, stuffed with meat sauce, breaded, and fried until golden. To most tourists, this is street food. You don’t really get arancini in restaurants. But to Sicilians, an arancini is cooked with time and love by their mothers and grandmothers. This is my mother’s recipe. This makes about 10 rice balls. Enjoy!

Meat filling:
3 tablespoons oil
1 lb. ground beef
1 medium onion chopped
1 small can tomato paste
½ teaspoon salt & pepper
1/2 cup water
½ cup peas

Rice mixture:
4 cups cooked arborio rice, cooled
½ cup grated  Pecorino Romano  cheese
3 tablespoons melted butter
3 eggs beaten
½ teaspoon salt & pepper

Combine cooked cooled rice, cheese, butter, eggs and salt & pepper. Mix well and place in refrigerator to chill.

Fry meat in oil, add onions. Add tomato paste, salt & pepper, water & peas. Simmer until most of the liquid is absorbed.

Shape rice into a ball (a little larger than a golf ball) Make indentation and place about 1 tablespoon meat mixture in center and roll rice over, adding a little more rice to cover and form a ball. Prepare all of the balls and place on waxed paper before going to the next step.

Gently dip the rice ball in beaten egg. Roll in seasoned breadcrumbs and deep-fry about 3-4 at a time until golden. I used my Fry Daddy. Drain on paper toweling.

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10 Responses to Rice Balls (Sicilian Arancini)

  1. Hali says:

    you use 3 beaten eggs, but talk about miximg them in rice mixture…and use them also in dipping rice ball. How much egg do you use in rice mixture and how many egg in dipping mixture?

    • Mommalatteskitchen says:

      You use the 3 eggs for the rice. For dipping you can just eyeball what you need. I would say 2 eggs should do, if not one more. 🙂

  2. Hali says:

    Thanx, I will try this one out 😀

  3. Kat says:

    Can rice balls be frozen and reheated?

  4. Can be frozen!Do not dip in egg and breadcrumb’s till ready to fry!Make balls then freeze!

  5. Julie says:

    I have cooked this a few times now but I don’t add any Meat. I fry finely chopped onions with garlic and chilli, then I add some Parmesan cheese, tomato paste and then I add the Rice.

    Today I made a Curry and I added some of the Curry gravy into the mixture and it works very well indeed.
    Thank-you very much for your recipe. 😎

  6. Connie says:

    Delish I made them a few times, what I did was add cubed mozzarella in the center with the peas and chopmeat I also added 1/4 shredded mozzarella in the rice mixture so good and easy to do I also made a little sauce on the side soo good thank you for the recipe.

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