Cheesy arancini recipe

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This recipe for cheesy arancini is the perfect way to use up leftover risotto. Rice balls stuffed with cheese and covered in ragu sauce.

Serves10–30 balls
Preparation Time15 mins
Cooking Time15 mins
Total Time30 mins
Cost RangeNot

This is by far the tastiest way we can think of using up leftover risotto. Just a few ingredients can turn what would have probably been thrown into the bin, into a delicious snack, appetiser or even party food. Traditionally made in Sicily, these Italian crispy rice balls are usually served with ragu sauce and stuffed with oozing melted cheese and can be deep fried or pan fried. Whatever flavour risotto you have left, just make sure the rice is very chilled before rolling it, as it will hold its shape better when cooked.


  • Leftover cooked risotto rice, chilled
  • 50g parmesan cheese, to every 200g of risotto used
  • Salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 50g panko breadcrumbs




  1. Take the leftover risotto and in a large mixing bowl, add the parmesan and salt and pepper. Fork through to combine.
  2. Start rolling individual balls out of the cheesy rice mixture. You can make them whatever size you fancy.
  3. Once shaped, dip each one in the beaten egg and then roll in the breadcrumbs. Fry in a pan filled with a shallow layer of hot sunflower oil and fry a few at a time until golden and crispy. Serve.
Top Tip for making Cheesy arancini

If you can’t find panko breadcrumbs just use normal. Whizz up wholemeal bread for a nuttier taste.


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