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Chicken Pesto Arancini

Arancini, which means little oranges in Italian, originated in Sicily. Keeping its name and appearance aside, Arancini are not at all related to the orange fruit; they’re simply fried balls of risotto.

A big thumbs up for the chicken lovers… Quick to make and delectable too…

Treat yourself with this mind-boggling appetizer, crisp from the outside with a burst of  flavour of Basil and Pine-nut pesto….


Preparation Time: 20 minutes

Cooking Time: 08 minutes

Makes: 12 Balls

Ingredients and Quantity:

Arborio rice, cooked and cooled / Leftover Risotto- 1 ½ cups

Fresh Basil and pine-nut pesto, thick- ½  cup

Salt- To taste

Grilled Herbed Chicken breast, minced- 01 no. small

Mozzarella, cut into 12 cubes- 24 gm. / or more as desired

All-purpose flour- 01 cup

Egg- 01 no

Panko bread crumbs- 01 cup

Peanut Oil / Vegetable Oil- to deep fry


In a large glass bowl, combine to together the cooked Arborio rice and pesto. Add salt to taste.

Divide the rice into 12 equal portions.

Place the blended mixture on your palm; place a small cube of mozzarella, ½ spoon of minced chicken, ensuring that the cheese and chicken are completely encased in the rice ball.

Place on a Parchment paper.

Place it in the freezer for 05 minutes to get a firmer Texture.

Prepare three bowls, one bowl with all-purpose flour, one with whisked seasoned egg and panko bread crumbs in the third bowl .

In a deep non-stick pan, heat the oil.

Dredge the balls each one by one in flour, then egg and then in panko bread crumbs.

Gently drop 06 balls in the hot oil and ensure that it is lightly browned from all the sides.

With the help of a perforated spoon remove the balls and place on the absorbent paper to remove excess of oil.

Repeat the process for the left over Arancini.

Serve very hot with Marinara Sauce or any sauce of your choice

Chef Tips:

  1. Time saving tip: Make the risotto a day ahead of time and keep it the fridge until ready to use and all you’ll need to do the day of is to fry them when required.
  2. Time saving tip: You may use leftover risotto for making Arancini.

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