While perusing one of my Pioneer Woman cookbooks I came across this easy recipe. My family LOVES fried cheese and if it’s on a menu we usually order it. Even my picky eater enjoys it. I’ve always wanted to make it at home but never really knew how. I knew it started with mozzarella sticks like my boys often have for snacks but that’s about it. The original recipe makes 32 pieces which was too much for us to snack on this afternoon so I scaled it back to about 16 pieces.
This is my smaller version. If you are making it for more people figure 4 to 5 cheese sticks per person and adjust the flour, egg and Panko accordingly. For the 16 I made I used only one egg and about 1/8 of a cup of milk. The recipe is easily doubled.
Our favorite pasta sauce is Bertolli Vidalia Onion and Garlic. It’s what I had on hand today to use instead of marinara sauce. Use what you like or what you happen to have in your pantry.
Don’t substitute regular breadcrumbs for the Panko. The Panko gives them a nice crunch and texture.
This recipe is definitely a keeper and will certainly be made again and again. A perfect snack for movie night, game night or a lazy Sunday afternoon. It was a big hit with the boys and I can see myself making loads of these when they are teenagers and have friends over. It’s really that easy.
- 8 pieces of Mozzarella string cheese, removed from their wrappers and cut in half
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 egg
- 1/8 cup milk
- 1 cup Italian seasoned Panko breadcrumbs
- Canola oil or Vegetable oil, for frying
- Marinara or your favorite pasta sauce, for dipping, about 1 cup
- Place the flour in a bowl, Panko in a bowl and mix the egg with milk in yet a separate bowl. Dip mozzarella sticks in the flour, tapping to remove excess, then the egg and finally the Panko. Place on a baking sheet. Repeat with each cheese stick, pressing the Panko gently to make it stick. (You may need to add a bit more Panko if it becomes too wet and doesn't stick.) You need to make sure the cheese is coated well. Once you have all of your cheese sticks dipped and dredged and on the baking sheet, place in freezer for about 20 minutes. This will really make the coating stick so don't rush or skip this part. About 5 minutes before they are ready to come out of the freezer heat about 1 1/2 inches of oil in a fry pan. In a small saucepan, heat the marinara sauce.
- Once the oil is hot, gently place frozen cheese sticks into the oil, a few at a time so as not to crowd the pan or cool the oil too much. Turn them with tongs to keep them from burning. They should be a golden brown. If the cheese starts to ooze out it's time to remove them to a paper towel lined plate. They should be fried no longer that about 3 - 4 minutes total. They were not stringy like I've had in restaurants but delicious all the same.
Adapted from: The Pioneer Woman Cooks - Food From My Frontier