20 Minute Italian Rice Ball Skillet

20 Minute Italian Rice Ball Skillet is made in a jif with ZERO chopping required! This easy and delicious, gluten-free dinner recipe is the the deconstructed version of fried Italian Rice Balls.

We’re in a bit of a dinner rut (which I know sounds crazy coming from a food blogger!) so I turned to my friends on Instagram Stories a few weeks ago, asking them what the last meal was that knocked their socks off. I got so many great ideas, including an oldie but goodie recipe from Skinnytaste for Sicilian Rice Ball Casserole.

I audibly “oooo‘ed” after reading the suggestion, as I used to frequently make the dish after Ben’s and my excellent Italian adventure nearly ten years ago. (Where in the HADES did the last decade go, by the way?) Back then I’d wanted to recreate some of the dishes we ate on the Amalfi Coast, where Ben and I stayed for part of our trip, and the flavors of Gina’s casserole took us right back to the cliffside town of Praiano, just up from Positano, that we immediately fell in love with. The sparkling sea views, charming, hidden gardens, and endless supply of centuries old, steep stone staircases completely exceeded our expectations.

Being the sophisticated foodies that we are, Ben and I found the local pizza shop quickly after arriving, and there was more then one occasion when we had to haul our gelato-laden butts up said steep stone staircases to the shop after realizing they were about to close for the day.

Pro tip: Mom and Pop restaurants in Italy have odd hours and close early by American standards, but homemade pizza is worth the gasp-inducing, will-they-or-won’t-they-make-it climb every time!

In addition to pizza, the shop sold the most incredible Arancini – ie Sicilian or Italian Rice Balls which are leftover risotto rolled into balls then stuffed with stewed meats, cheeses, and vegetables, and then fried – that paired perfectly with an ice cold Peroni on a balcony overlooking the Mediterranean. Ugh, take me back!

Anyway, I haven’t made the casserole in 6 or 7 years, and was inspired to simplify it into the skillet recipe you see here. Italian Rice Ball Casserole is ready in just 20 minutes, made from kitchen staples, and would you believe there’s zero chopping required, save for some fresh parsley if you wish to sprinkle on top at the end? Like biting into a hot and sizzling Italian Rice Ball, this meal is comforting to the max.

Overhead photo of Italian Rice Ball Skillet

My Italian Rice Ball Skillet is cooked rice mixed…

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