Italian Appetisers

Sicilian Rice Balls (ARANCINI DI RISO)

Preparing Sicilian Rice Balls is somewhat of an art.

This Sicilian appetizer is stuffed with cheese and meat and coated with a light crispy batter.

They faintly resemble the color and texture of an orange after frying.

Sicilian Rice Balls can be served as snacks, for holiday parties or as a light dinner served with a nice salad.

They will take a couple of hour to make but they are well worth the effort.

There are many variations of this recipe. The stuffing varies but the technique is still the same.

Makes 4 to 6 rice balls.




  • 4 cups of cooked rice
  • 1 cup of fresh grated Parmesan cheese
  • 4 egg whites
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 2 cups of seasoned bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup of tomato sauce
  • 1/2 pound of ground beef
  • 1 cup of mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 cup of peas, cooked
  • 1/2 tsp of salt
  • 1/2 tsp of fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil




  • In frying pan sauté the ground beef breaking up the meat into little pieces.
  • Add the garlic, salt, pepper, peas, mozzarella cheese and 1/4 cup of tomato sauce.
  • Simmer together for about 10 minutes.
  • Let the mixture cool down.
  • Add the egg yolks and the Parmesan cheese to the rice.
  • Add the remaining sauce to the rice a little at a time.
  • Roll the rice into balls shaped like a medium sized oranges.
  • Poke a hole into the center of the rice and insert around 2 Tbls of the meat mixture.
  • Pat the ball with the unbeaten egg whites and roll into the breadcrumbs.
  • In a large frying pan, fry the rice balls in the olive oil until golden brown.

    Serve hot.



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