Arancini Bites with Fontina Cheese

Arancini Bites with Fontina Cheese by 2sistersrecipes.com

Arancini Bites with Fontina Cheese are Italian little rice balls filled with fontina cheese, green onions, eggs, Parmesan cheese, and long grain rice. Then they are lightly coated in breadcrumbs and baked until golden and tender.

I saw these little arancini bites in the freezer section at Trader Joe’s, and since my family loves rice balls as their favorite snack food, I decided to duplicate the recipe.

Arancini Bites with Fontina Cheese by 2sistersrecipes.com

For this recipe, I added some green onions for an extra punch of flavor and baked them in the oven instead of frying.

OH Yes…  this time – No frying!

At times, baking rice balls can be a lifesaver.

The Outcome for our Arancini Bites with Fontina Cheese?

  • AMAZING! These arancini bites with fontina cheese turned out really good!  Better than expected.
  • Crispy on the outside, moist and tender on the inside with a delicious surprise of fontina cheese melted in the center.  YUM!
  • Fontina cheese and the green onion really adds a lot of flavor and a different dimension to this timeless Italian classic.

Notes and Great Tips…

  • For GLUTEN-FREE? Be sure to roll these rice balls with corn crumbs instead of the regular breadcrumbs.
  • They’re easy enough to prep the day before, then throw them into the oven just before guests arrive.
  • You can make them, and FREEZE before baking! Be sure to sealed them in an air-tight container, then freeze them.
  • Serve these arancini bites as little appetizers with some marinara sauce on the side for dipping.
  • Kids will love them too!
  • They are so festive and perfect to serve at parties.
Little balls of rice on a white doyly. by 2sistersrecipes.com

 

What Does “Arancini” Mean?

The word arancini comes from a Sicilian classic recipe for rice balls, known as “arancini.”

These are usually very large rice balls (the size of an orange) filled inside with tomato sauce, meat, peas, and cheese.  And they are fried.

We love them too! But prefer to make them with our easy casserole version – our Best Rice Ball Casserole Stuffed with Meat and Peas, which is baked! (…and it’s the best!)

Be sure to check it out! 🙂

Arancini Bites with Fontina Cheese by 2sistersrecipes.com

Homemade Arancini Bites-Verses-Trader Joe’s…

1.  Trader Joe’s “arancini bites” can be expensive to buy.  They come frozen and cost about $6.50 for 12 bites.

2.  And, like most frozen foods, they are packed with high levels of sodium, as well as some other additives and processed junk.

3.  When you make them yourself, they’re definitely healthier, taste better, and cost a lot less.

We LOVE them because they are bakednot fried, and they’re loaded with “all-natural” and fresh ingredients.

Giving my family a healthier snack is important to me.

 

Ingredients Needed for Arancini Bites with Fontina Cheese:

  • 3 + 1/2 cups water

  • 1 + 1/2 cups long grain rice

  • 1/2 tsp. salt

  • 2 Tbsp. salted butter

  • 2 eggs

  • 1 scallion (green onion)- minced

  • dash of organic cayenne pepper

  • 2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

  • salt and pepper to taste

  • 5 ounces Fontina cheese- cut into 3/4-inch cubes

  • 1/2 cup plain breadcrumbs or corn crumbs or GF bread crumbs

  • olive oil cooking spray

How to Make Arancini Bites with Fontina Cheese?

(*Full recipe card below!)

1.  First,  in a medium saucepan, bring water to boil and add rice, salt, and butter.  Cover, on low heat, simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.  Turn off heat.  Let stand for 5 minutes.  Transfer to a large bowl to cool down.

2.  In the meantime, preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Lightly spray one large cookie sheet with cooking oil spray.

3.  In the bowl with rice, add eggs, scallion onion, cayenne pepper, and Parmesan cheese.  Mix until well blended.  Stir in olive oil.  Taste the rice mixture.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

4.  Place breadcrumbs into a small bowl.

5.  With a small ice cream scoop or a teaspoon, scoop up a small amount of rice mixture into your hand.  Take one cube of Fontina cheese and lightly push the cube into the center of the rice.  Close the rice ball, working with the rice the best you can.

6.  Then roll the rice ball into breadcrumbs until coated.

7.  Transfer to a cooking sheet. Continue making the balls until all rice mixture is completely gone.  Lightly spray the balls on top with extra-virgin olive oil.

8.  Bake for 18 minutes or more, until golden brown.

Yields: 30 arancini bites

a close up photo of little rice balls on white doily.  by 2sistersrecipes.com

These little rice balls will make a delightful appetizer or snack for everyone!

You may enjoy our recipes for Italian Rice Balls with Eggs and Cheese, and our Cheesy Rice Balls with Peas.  They too make wonderful appetizers!

I hope you’ll give this recipe a try!

In the meantime, ENJOY!!

… Thanks for PINNING!

Arancini Bites with Fontina Cheese by 2sistersrecipes.com

MORE  TASTY APPETIZERS!

Yield: 30 bites

Arancini Bites with Fontina Cheese

Arancini Bites with Fontina Cheese by 2sistersrecipes.com

Arancini Bites with Fontina Cheese are mini rice balls filled with fontina cheese, green onions, eggs, Parmesan cheese, and long grain rice. Then they are lightly coated in breadcrumbs and baked until golden and tender.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 18 minutes
Total Time 38 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3 + 1/2 cups water
  • 1 + 1/2 cups long-grain rice
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 Tbsp. salted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 scallion (green onion)- minced
  • dash of organic cayenne pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 5 ounces Fontina cheese- cut into 3/4-inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup plain breadcrumbs or corn crumbs or GF bread crumbs
  • olive oil cooking spray

Instructions

  1. In a medium saucepan, bring water to boil and add rice, salt, and butter. Cover, on low heat, simmer for 15 to 20 minutes. Turn off heat.
  2. Let stand for 5 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl to cool down.
  3. In the meantime, preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  4. Lightly spray one large cookie sheet with cooking oil spray.
  5. In the bowl with rice, add eggs, scallion onion, cayenne pepper, and Parmesan cheese. Mix until well blended. Stir in olive oil. Then taste the rice mixture and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Place breadcrumbs into a small bowl.
  7. With a small ice cream scoop or a teaspoon, scoop up a small amount of rice mixture into your hand. Take one cube of Fontina Cheese and lightly push the cube into the center of the rice. Close the rice ball, working with the rice the best you can. Then roll rice ball into breadcrumbs until coated.
  8. Transfer each one onto the cooking sheet. Continue making the balls until all rice mixture is completely gone. Lightly spray the balls on top with extra-virgin olive oil.
  9. Bake for 18 minutes, or until golden brown.
  10. Yields: 30 arancini bites

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

15 servings

Serving Size:

2 rice balls

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 197Total Fat: 9.6gCarbohydrates: 17.7gFiber: .4gSugar: .5gProtein: 8.2g

Nutrition Facts:  Serving size: 2 Arancini Bites.  Servings: 15.  Amount per serving Calories: 197 Total Fat: 9.6g Saturated Fat:  4.9g, Cholesterol: 45mg, Sodium: 333mg, Total Carbohydrate: 17.7g, Dietary Fiber: 0.4g, Total Sugars: 0.5g, Protein: 8.2g,  Vitamin D: 3mcg16%, Calcium: 169mg 13%, Iron: 1mg6%, Potassium: 48mg1%. 

Hello friends, if you try our arancini bites with Fontina cheese, let us know and leave a comment below!  We’d love to hear from you! Have fun and snap a photo and share it on Pinterest; be sure to tag or hashtag us.

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Happy Baking!   🙂 

Thanks for stopping by!  

 xo Anna and Liz

 

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8 Comments

  1. I have wanted to try to make arancici for quite some time! Yours sound perfectly delicious!

    BTW, if you've tried to come to my blog recently, it's been locked by Blogger. Someone has been trying to embed malicious codes in blogs and mine was one of a few dozen hacked in the past couple of months. Hopefully, Blogger will clear my site soon and my friends will be able to join me once again! Sad people out there 🙁

    1. Thank you for the lovely comment! Yes, Sue! We too have been hacked last year and again a few weeks ago, so we totally understand. It's been very difficult to stop them, they keep coming back. I think I will contact Blogger for some help as well. Hope they will correct your site soon! xxoo Anna and Liz

  2. Oh Anna and Liz, I'm so glad that you've shared your Arancini recipe! I can't get enough of recipes with my favorite Italian cheese, Fontina (well, I also do adore Asiago too!). I can't wait to make your arancini! I hope that you're having a beautiful day in Charleston! xo to you both, Roz