One of my all-time favorite appetizers to enjoy is a very large order of piping hot mozzarella sticks with flavorful marinara sauce. There's just something about the little gems of fried, cheesy deliciousness that make my mouth water in anticipation. Ever since I was young, I have always loved pulling and stretching the mozzarella sticks apart only to dunk them in marinara sauce.
Besides the whole pulling, stretching and dunking part, I also love that mozzarella sticks are easy-to-prepare in the comfort of your own kitchen. Homemade mozzarella sticks always seem to have the perfect amount of crunch paired with ooey, gooey cheese that seems to stretch for miles. I feel as though kids and adults alike have so much fun eating mozzarella sticks not only because they taste great, but also because in this case, it's okay to play with your food.
With just a few ingredients and a couple steps, you can have a basket of warm mozzarella sticks that are perfect to serve the kids as an after school snack, to dinner guests before the main course or to set on the table while the football games are on the television. Just be sure to have some warm marinara suace nearby for the endless amount of dunking!
Homemade Mozzarella Sticks
- 8 pieces of string cheese
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1-2 eggs
- 1-2 tablespoons milk
- 1 cup Italian-style Panko Bread Crumbs (I like to use Progresso)
- Oil for frying
- 1/2 cup marinara sauce (for dunking)
- Cut the string cheese in half for a total of 16 pieces.
- Pour the flour in a bowl.
- Whisk together the egg(s) and milk in a separate bowl.
- Pour the bread crumbs in a bowl.
- Make an assembly line of the three bowls: flour, egg mixture and bread crumbs.
- Roll the string cheese, one at a time, in the flour, then in the egg mixture and then in the bread crumbs, making sure to completely coat each piece of string cheese. It helps to pat the bread crumbs onto the pieces of cheese to make sure that they stick.
- Place the finished cheese sticks on a plate and put them in the freezer for at least 30 minutes to allow the bread crumb topping to set and the cheese to chill.
- Heat oil in a large pot (or in a fryer if you have one) until it reaches approximately 375 degrees (Tip: If you don't have a thermometer or a deep fryer, heat up oil and then toss in a tiny chunk of bread. If the bread sizzles at the top of the oil, then the oil is hot enough).
- Place the cheese sticks carefully into the hot oil and carefully roll the sticks around until the bread crumb topping turns a golden brown. This happens quickly so be sure to remove the sticks from the oil before the cheese completely melts through the bread crumbs.
- Remove from the oil with a slotted spoon or tongs and place on paper towel so that some of the grease gets absorbed into the towel.
- Serve warm with marinara sauce.