Cheesy Cooper® Sharp Fried Risotto Balls (Arancini)

Cube Cube CUBE Melt Melt MELT 4 4 SERVES: 4
Cook Time: 60 MIN
1/5 (1 Review)
Also known as arancini, fried risotto balls are a tasty, handheld appetizer (or whole meal, really) said to have originated in Sicily in about the 10th century. That’s the 900s, for those of us keeping score. Which means we’ve packed a thousand years of history into this dish. Plus more than a century of Cooper® goodness to top it off. That’s a whole lotta deliciousness. Cheesy, spherical deliciousness.


3 cups mushroom risotto, premade and chilled
12 (1/2-inch) cubes Cooper® Sharp White cheese
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs, lightly beaten*
1 cup fine dry bread crumbs (not seasoned)
vegetable oil for frying


Prepare mushroom risotto according to package directions. Spread it on to a cookie sheet and refrigerate until chilled through.

Transfer chilled risotto to a bowl. Using wet hands, roll chilled risotto into 12 balls 1 1/2 inches in diameter. For each risotto ball, poke a small hole in the center, open it up to insert a cube of Cooper® cheese, then reform into a ball.

Put flour, eggs, and bread crumbs in 3 separate bowls. Dredge 1 risotto ball in flour, shaking off excess. Dip in egg, letting excess drip off, then dredge in bread crumbs and transfer to a sheet of wax paper. Repeat with remaining balls.

Heat 2 inches of oil in a 4 to 5-quart heavy pot until thermometer registers 360°F. Working in batches of 4, lower risotto balls into oil with a slotted spoon and fry, turning occasionally, about 2-3 minutes, or until golden brown. Transfer with slotted spoon to paper towels to drain.

Return oil to 360°F between batches. Let balls stand 2 minutes (for cheese to melt … and your face not to melt) before eating.


*Consuming raw or undercooked meats, poultry, seafood, shellfish, or eggs may increase your risk of foodborne illness.