These cheese-filled Italian rice balls are a favorite of toddlers and adults alike! For more kid-friendly recipes, pick up Baby & Toddler on the Go.
Olive oil cooking spray
¼ cup (1 1 ?2 oz/45 g) all-purpose flour
1 large egg, lightly beaten
¼ cup (1 oz/30 g) fine dried bread crumbs
1 cup (5 oz/155 g) cooled cooked brown rice, preferably short grain
? cup ( 1 1 ?2 oz/45 g) shredded mozzarella cheese
¼ cup (2 oz/60 g) finely chopped cooked spinach (page 35)
Purchased tomato sauce for serving (optional)
Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Spray a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray.
Put the flour in one bowl, the egg in a second bowl, and the bread crumbs in a third bowl.
In another bowl, stir together the rice, mozzarella, and spinach, mixing well. Roll about 1 heaping tablespoon of the rice mixture between your palms into a ball. Roll the ball in the flour, then in the egg, and finally, in the bread crumbs, shaking off any excess with each step. Place the coated ball on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining rice mixture; you should get about 14 balls. Rinse your hands as you go so they don’t get too coated.
Bake the balls for 8 minutes, then turn them over. if some of the cheese leaks out, just tuck it back around the balls. Continue to bake until the balls are crisp and golden brown, about 8 minutes more. Let cool before serving. Serve the arancini with the tomato sauce for dipping, if desired.
Store It: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3 days, or seal in a zippered plastic bag and freeze for up to 3 months.
Pack It: Thaw 2 or 3 arancini, if necessary, then pack in a small airtight container. Pack a separate small airtight container with sauce. If you are on the go for more than 1 hour, place both containers in a small bag with a travel ice pack.