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An Easy Mozzarella Arancini Recipe You'll Want To Make For Dinner Tonight

They require a little work but are definitely worth it and a great way to use up leftover risotto.

Make the most what's already taking up space in your cupboard.

To make these Sicilian cheese-filled snacks, you first have to make risotto, then use the risotto to make cheese-stuffed balls, then coat them with breadcrumbs and deep-fry them. There's no doubting it requires a little work but trust us – they are definitely worth it. 

Mozzarella arancini with sweet and spicy marinara

Mozzarella arancini with sweet & spicy marinara | NDC

Mozzarella arancini with sweet & spicy marinara | NDC


For the arancini

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 200g arborio or risotto rice
  • 250ml white wine
  • 750ml vegetable stock
  • 75g pecorino, finely grated
  • 1⁄2 x 150g ball mozzarella, cut into
  • 20 pieces
  • 150g panko breadcrumbs
  • 50g flour
  • 2 eggs

To serve

  • 250ml passata
  • 3 tablespoons hot sauce
  • 1⁄2 tsp garlic powder
  • Small handful basil leaves
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black
  • pepper


  1. Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over a low heat. Add the onion and garlic to the pan and sauté for 6-8 minutes until softened without colour, add the arborio rice and toss to coat. Pour in the white wine, let it bubble away for a couple of minutes until reduced, stirring regularly. Add the hot stock, little by little until it is all used up and the rice has cooked, this will take about 20 minutes. Make sure each amount you add is soaked up before adding the next. Stir through the pecorino, season to taste, then spread the risotto in an even layer on a tray lined with parchment paper. Cover with cling film and chill for at least two hours.
  2. To form the arancini, scoop a portion of the cooled risotto into your hand. Form a pattie with 2” in diameter approximately and place a piece of mozzarella into the centre. Repeat to give you 20 in total. Place on a tray in the freezer for at least an hour until solidified to ensure they hold their shape.
  3. Once ready to cook, heat a large saucepan a third full with oil or deep enough to cover the arancini once submersed and allow to reach a temperature of 180C . Once it has almost come up to temperature, add the flour, egg and panko to three separate bowls. Toss the arancini in the flour, followed by the egg and then the breadcrumbs. Placing on a tray as you go. Deep-fry in batches of five for 5-6 minutes, or until golden and crispy. Transfer to a double layer of kitchen paper to drain.
  4. Combine the passata, hot sauce and garlic powder in a small saucepan and bring to a rolling simmer for 2-3 minutes, remove from the heat. Serve the arancini on a platter alongside the sauce and a scattering of basil leaves.

To read the full recipe courtesy of Donal Skehan in collaboration with The National Dairy Council, click here. 

The National Dairy Council has joined up with the European Milk Forum to launch Cheese Your Way, an EU-funded multi-country campaign involving Denmark, France and Ireland. This three-year programme runs from 2019-2021 with the aim of promoting and creating awareness of the taste, quality, versatility and convenience of cheese in everyday life.

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