Arancini con Mozzarella

In times where we need to make use of our stores, meaning the store cupboard, any larder, pantry and of course the fridge and freezer, it’s imperative that we maximize on our dishes while stopping any food waste at all.  The cost-of-living crisis will and is affecting us all and will continue for a while, so as the famous supermarket always says, ‘Every little help’. When you are cooking, try to think ahead and plan additional meals where possible. This will inevitably save on your personal time as well as electricity within your household appliances.

Risotto is a great carrier of flavour and with that in mind, as a dish it becomes incredibly versatile when choosing your seasonal and final flavours. A wilted broccoli, a sopping wet bag of spinach or bendy carrots, can simply be made into a risotto!  Now any Italian knows that when it comes to risotto, you should always double the risotto base so that leftovers are a 100% certainty. Risotto makes the BEST leftover arancini. Rolled and filled leftover rice, then fried, amazing balls of absolute perfection.

Now when it comes to frying the arancini, I am very much a traditionalist and always fry in a deep fat fryer that I only cook arancini in. However, as most households (mine excluded) now own an air fryer then just pop the breaded arancini balls into the basket and bake as required. This will of course save on your electricity bill and will also remove the hot fat from the kitchen. My hair still smells of deep-fried food, but I kinda like it.

I love leftovers more than the main event in many cases.  Cook more and plan ahead, these risotto balls are ideal for simple leftovers.  Arancini are no exception, an absolute favourite with my children and family.  Delicious and soft with a hot gooey mozzarella surprise on the inside leaving a crispy breadcrumb jacket on the outside.  Leftover risotto need never go to waste again.


Preparation time: 5 minutes                                                            Cooking time: 6 minutes

Serves: 4

2 eggs

30g Parmigiano Reggiano, grated

400g leftover risotto

100g breadcrumbs

125g mozzarella

4 tbsp. leftover tomato sugo



  1. Add one beaten egg and the freshly grated parmesan to 400g of cold risotto and stir.
  2. Beat the second egg and place into a bowl and add the breadcrumbs into another bowl, ready for rolling.
  3. Take a small amount of risotto in the palm of your hand and flatten it.
  4. Add a small piece of mozzarella to the centre along with a tsp of the tomato sauce and roll the risotto into a ball.
  5. Roll the risotto ball into the egg and then into the breadcrumbs.
  6. Deep fry until golden brown.


Carmela’s tip:  You can either dip the risotto balls into the eggs or into a batter called a pastella – a mixture of 300ml water, pinch of salt and 200g 00 flour.