• 1/2 cup finely minced onion
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cups short grain U.S. grown rice
  • 1/3 cup white wine
  • 6-8 cups hot vegetable broth
  • 2 tsp Old Bay seasoning
  • Zest from one lemon
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp finely chopped parsley
  • 1/2 cup shredded manchego cheese
  • 1 large egg
  •   Manchego cheese cut into small squares to stuff into rice balls
  • 2 cups gluten-free panko crumbs, finely ground
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup tapioca starch
  •   Oil for frying or air fryer
  •   Pre-made marinara sauce for dipping


  1. Add olive oil to a low/ medium heat large frying pan.
  2. Add minced onion and sauté until soft.
  3. Add rice and stir.
  4. Add wine and stir. Cook on medium heat for 2 minutes.
  5. With heat on medium, begin adding the hot vegetable broth about a cup at a time. Stirring continuously until stock is absorbed. Repeat process until rice is al dente. This took about 20 minutes for me.
  6. Once rice is cooked remove and spread onto a cookie sheet to cool.
  7. Once rice is slightly warm pour it into a large bowl.
  8. Add an egg, Old Bay seasoning, lemon zest, salt, parsley and manchego cheese and stir well.
  9. Use a large ice cream scoop to scoop out rice balls.
  10. Place on a cookie sheet.
  11. With cold water running, wet your hands and pick up a rice ball. Flatten and place a piece of cheese in the middle and then form back into a ball. Repeat until all balls are done.
  12. Heat oil for deep frying. Have oil at least an inch deep.
  13. Get out 3 shallow bowls.
  14. In one bowl add the tapioca starch. In the other bowl add the beaten eggs, and in the 3rd bowl add the ground panko crumbs.
  15. Take one of the rice balls and roll it in the tapioca starch. Then place it in the eggs and coat it.
  16. Once coated place it in the panko crumbs and coat ball well. Place on a cookie sheet.
  17. Repeat process until all balls are coated.
  18. Add rice ball to hot oil. I was able to add 6 rice balls at a time.
  19. Fry for about 2-3 minutes and turn over to cook other side.
  20. Remove and place on a paper lined plate.
  21. Repeat until all rice balls are fried.
  22. Serve warm with marinara sauce.



*The other option for cooking is in an air fryer.

  1. Follow all steps and once balls are coated add 6 to an air fryer.
  2. Spray balls with oil.
  3. Cook at 400 degrees for 6 minutes. Flip balls. Spray again with oil and cook for another 6 minutes.
  4. Remove and repeat with remaining balls.