It’s almost too easy to make hot, crispy, crispy mozzarella balls

Fried mozzarella is always a good idea.

When my kids were younger, our special hangout spot was the neighborhood Irish bar, which had a jukebox full of U2 songs and a menu of burgers, fries, and mozzarella sticks. A few years ago the place changed hands and got an upscale makeover — and I still can’t get over it.

RELATED: It’s Almost Too Easy To Make Hot, Fresh, Fried Onion Rings

Luckily, as I keep telling you, it really isn’t hard to fry stuff at home. And once you discover that nothing compares to the flavor and crunch of hot, freshly fried food straight out of the pan, those soggy mozzarella sticks from your local pizzeria just won’t cut it.

You can buy regular, low-moisture supermarket mozzarella, cut it into cubes, and fry it effortlessly any night of the week. But there’s something really cute — and really tempting — about those little balls of cheese called bocconcini. Round stuff is just fun.


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It’s true that fried mozzarella balls aren’t the kind of “put them on a griddle and forget them” situation that makes cooking truly effortless. You need to keep a close eye on these little guys.

So if you’re not preparing them as a standalone snack, I encourage you to supplement the rest of the meal in a more convenient way. I made these for dinner this week with a Caesar salad kit, and it was amazingly good and completely satisfying.

Plus, I promise no one’s complaining when fried cheese is what’s at dinner. Although I still miss my old neighborhood bar, at least at home I can have fried cheese without U2, whenever I want.

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Recipe: fried mozzarella balls
Inspired by Down Home with hit Neelys and Happy Foods

Ingredients

  • 1 bottle of vegetable oil, 16 ounces
  • 1 container (8 ounces) mini mozzarella cheese balls (bocconcini)
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup dried breadcrumbs, preferably Italian style
  • 1 jar of your favorite marinara sauce

directions

  1. Prepare a large plate or plate lined with paper towels.
  2. Prepare three shallow bowls or pie pans. Add the flour to the first, the eggs to the second and the breadcrumbs to the third.
  3. In a large saucepan, heat 1 inch of vegetable oil over medium-high heat to 375 degrees. (If you don’t have a food thermometer, the oil will crackle and make a little noise when it’s done.)
  4. Drain the mozzarella and pat it dry with paper towel.
  5. Meanwhile, bring your marinara sauce to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat.
  6. You will repeat this next part with a few pieces of cheese at a time. Pass the cheese balls in the flour to coat them well, then the egg and finally the breadcrumbs. Make sure they are well covered. If you see any bald spots, roll them in a little more flour.
  7. Place the coated cheese balls, a few at a time, into the oil. Give them room to dance.
  8. Fry until crisp and golden, about a minute or less. You want to pull them out before they get too brown. When they are ready, remove them from the oil with a slotted spoon or a spider in your paper towel lined pan.
  9. Repeat with all the cheese. Serve immediately with warmed marinara sauce.

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