These cheesy baked stuffed rice balls with olives is a fancy way to recycle leftover rice! These arancini-inspired baked stuffed rice balls will be the new stars of your appetizer platter, and are easy and quick to make. The recipe include a scrumptious tomato dipping sauce.

FOR THE TOMATO SAUCE – 2 cup large tomato peeled, seeded and chopped (about 4 large tomatoes) – ½ teaspoon sugar white, granulated – 1 tablespoons olive oil – ½ teaspoon oregano (dry, ground), crushed – 1 garlic cloves crushed – ½ teaspoon salt or to taste


FOR THE RICE BALLS – 2 cup leftover cooked white rice – 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour – 1 cup milk whole or skim – 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese divided – 8 pitted green olives


To prepare the tomato sauce, in a saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium-low heat. Once heated, stir in tomatoes, garlic, and oregano, add the sugar and ½ cup of water. Once heated through, lower heat and simmer covered until you obtain a thick (chunky) sauce. Season with salt to taste. You should obtain about 1 ½ cup of sauce. Remove from the heat, and set it aside.

Step 1:

While the sauce is boiling, start to make the rice ball by combining rice, flour, milk and ½ cup of water in a medium saucepan. Heat and simmer over very low heat, until almost all the liquid has evaporated. Mix in ¼ of a cup of Parmesan and cook stirring until it turns into a very thick mix. Remove from the stove and cool.

Step 2:

Heat oven to 450 ºF [230 ºC]. While the oven is preheating, place the rice mixture on the clean counter or cutting board, and knead pressing for a minute to make it into a more compact mixture.

Step 3:

To make the balls, place 2 tablespoons of the rice mixture on your hand and flatten, place an olive in the center and wrap the rice around it, shaping into a ball. Squeeze to make sure there are no cracks. Coat the ball with the remaining Parmesan, and squeeze them to make sure the cheese sticks. Repeat to form 7 more balls. Place on a baking tray.

Step 4:

To cook the rice balls, bake in the preheated oven until the balls turn golden brown (15-20 mins). Once browned, remove from the oven. Let them cool slightly before serving. Serve alongside the tomato sauce.

Step 5:

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