Italian Arancini Rice Cups

This quick take on a classic Sicilian street food favorite is a fun meal that’s satisfying and comforting.

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Cooking time PREP TIME 5 mins
Cooking time COOK TIME 6 mins
Servings SERVES 1
Ready in TOTAL TIME 11 mins
Cooking time
PREP TIME 5 mins
Cooking time
COOK TIME 6 mins
Ready in
TOTAL TIME 11 mins


  • 1 cup Minute® Ready to Serve White Rice
  • 1 cube mozzarella cheese, about 1 inch
  • 1/3 cup tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup frozen peas
  • 1 tbsp basil pesto
  • 2 tbsp Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 2 tbsp garlic croutons, crumbled


  • Fans of the Sicilian street food classic, will love this Italian Arancini Rice Cups recipe made with Minute® Rice.

    Step 1

  • Heat rice according to package directions, with mozzarella cube inserted in center of rice.

    Step 2

  • In small microwave-safe bowl, stir together tomato sauce, peas and pesto. Cover with plastic wrap, pulling back a small area for venting.

    Step 3

  • Microwave on High, stirring once, for 60 to 90 seconds or until heated through.

    Step 4

  • Transfer rice to tomato sauce mixture and stir until well coated. Top with Parmesan and crumbled croutons.

    Recipe Tip

    Substitute croutons with crumbled toasted bread drizzled with olive oil.

What are Arancini?

Arancini are typical Italian snacks which consist of rice balls, covered in breadcrumbs and then deep fried, they are often found in Sicily. Making authentic Sicilian arancini can be quite time consuming so this quick and easy Italian Arancini Rice Cups recipe is the next best thing.

For more Italian-inspired dishes check out this Italian and Meatball Grain Bowl or for something more risotto inspired, learn how to make this Creamy Italian Mushroom Rice recipe. If you’re a fan of stuffed peppers, this Easy Italian Stuffed Peppers recipe will most certainly be of interest!

Make Your Own Tomato Sauce

Although tomato sauce is a common kitchen staple, there may be times when you find you don’t have any at hand. Luckily, making tomato sauce is actually very simple. Simply cut some tomatoes in half, discard the seeds and grate the tomato flesh into a bowl. Then heat the tomato pulp, add in some salt, olive oil, tomato paste, garlic and basil. Bring the mixture to the boil and then leave to simmer until the sauce has reduced to about half its original size. 

Once you’ve finished making your tomato sauce, try adding it into these Classic Stuffed Peppers, this Spanish-Style Chicken and Rice or this Brown Rice and Bean Chili.

Preparing Frozen Peas

The great thing about frozen peas is that they are flash steamed before they are frozen meaning that they are already ready to eat, you simply need to heat them up so they get that desired texture and color. 

Frozen peas are a versatile ingredient and can be used in plenty of dishes like this Mediterranean Shrimp and Rice, this Leftover Turkey Dinner and Rice or this Golden Rice Pilaf. They also make a great addition to this cheesy Mexican rice recipe.

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