Perfect Rice Balls

In my home, we eat a fair amount of Asian food. I often cook curries or General Tso’s chicken, and we stir fry about twice a month.

I also like to serve Asian food for guests. I especially like Chicken Dal, and Basil Chicken Curry. Both entrees are on the mild side, but packed with flavor. When I serve these dishes, I like to make rice balls to put on the plate of each guest. My rice balls up the presentation factor of any dinner with very little effort.

The method is simple, and turns out perfect every time.

Perfect Rice Balls

Serves 4 people.


about 2 1/4 cups of cooked rice [You can use any type of rice: brown, white, yellow, jasmine rice, wild rice, or Mexican rice. My personal favorite is jasmine rice.]

fresh herbs, black sesame seeds, or toasted coconut shreds to garnish [try basil cut in a chiffonade, a few cilantro leaves, dill, Italian parsley, or mint]



4 small bowls with a rounded bottom for round, rice mounds OR use a set of small ramekins for a squat, flatter, rice ball

One of my sets of little bowls.

Side-note:  I have two sets of matching bowls, each bowl holds a little more than ½ cup of cooked riceDon’t have a set of small bowls? Use a measuring cup sprayed with cooking spray, and make each rice ball individually.  You could also use a greased cookie scoop, but the balls do not sit as nicely.  One perk of using a set of small bowls is that if you need to cool the rice quickly, you can pop the bowls in the refrigerator for a few minutes.


Prepare the rice as directed, and allow it to cool for a few minutes so that you can handle it.  Then, divide the rice among the small bowls.

Next, pack the warm rice down evenly into each bowl and make a flat top with a spoon.

Allow the rice to set in the bowls on the kitchen counter while you prepare the rest of the meal or pop them in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes.

When it comes time to plate the rice, gently tip the bowls over onto the serving plates. The rice should easily loosen from the bowl. I have never experienced sticking, but if you are concerned, use a little cooking spray on the bowls before adding the rice.

Once the rice balls are unmolded, garnish and serve!