These delicious Italian rice balls make a fantastic starter, with a spicy tomato or marinara style dip.
Prep Time

1 hr 30 mins mins

Cook Time

10 mins mins

Total Time

1hr 40 mins mins


20-24 balls


  • 1 cup uncooked Laila Long Grain Rice
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 tbsp dried basil or 1 tablespoon dried parsley
  • 1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt, to taste
  • 2 1/4 cups low sodium chicken broth or 2 1/4 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups dried breadcrumbs
  • 2 cups olive oil or 2 cups vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, in cubes (optional)


  • In a bowl whisk together the eggs, parmesan cheese, basil or parsley, pepper, and salt;
  • Cover and refrigerate
  • Pour the chicken broth (or water and a 1/2 teaspoon of salt) into a large saucepan and bring to a boil; stir in the rice, cover and reduce the heat to low.
  • Cook the rice until liquid is almost absorbed, about 15 to 17 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and gradually pour in egg mixture, continually stirring rapidly to coat the surface of the rice and prevent the egg from scrambling; allow rice mixture to cool in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
  • Pour bread crumbs into a shallow dish. Dampen your hands with water and create 1 inch balls from the rice mixture, then coat each one with bread crumbs.
  • Dampen your hands with water and create 1-inch balls from the rice mixture, then coat each one with bread crumbs.
  • In a small, deep frying pan, heat enough oil to cover the rice balls.
  • Fry the rice balls 4 to 6 at a time, turning as needed to ensure even browning.
  • Drain on paper towels, then serve warm as is or with a bit of spicy tomato or marinara sauce.
  • Another nice touch you can use with these is to put a small cube of mozzarella cheese in the middle of each rice ball!
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