Blueberry Maple Cinnamon Muffins

Blueberry Maple Cinnamon Muffins

Maple combined with a subtle touch of cinnamon and some blueberries gives these muffins the flavor of blueberry pancakes with maple syrup.

Spoon with  blueberry  muffin and yogurt

The word muffin (in the US) is often used for small, round breads with a sweet taste.

Quick breads are chemically leavened (baking soda or baking powder) as opposed to yeast leavened breads.

The word muffin comes from the French word ‘moufflet.’ However, the origin of the muffin is not from France.

The original muffin comes from England, and are called English muffins.

English muffin with jam and butter

Muffins, as prepared in US bakeries and homes, include both savoury varieties, such as cornmeal and cheese muffins, and sweet varieties such as blueberry, chocolate chip, lemon or banana flavors.


Try These Muffin/Cupcake Recipes

Blueberry Muffins Paleo Style

Dark Cocoa Banana Muffins


Muffins can range from lightly sweetened to products that are “richer than many cakes in fat and sugar.”

Blueberry Maple Cinnamon Muffins  in a baking pan

Three states have adopted “The Official State Muffin.” These include:

Official  state muffins

Minnesota – Blueberry Muffin

Massachusetts – Corn Muffin

New York – Apple Muffin

Blueberry Maple Cinnamon Muffins

In this recipe we opted to use heavy cream in place of milk and Greek yogurt in place of sour cream.

Blueberry Maple Cinnamon Muffins  warm on a plate

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup milk

1/2 cup butter, melted

1/2 cup maple syrup

1/4 cup sour cream

1 large egg, room temperature

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

TOPPING:

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

3 tablespoons maple sugar, regular sugar can be used

2 tablespoons quick oats, can opt for chopped nuts

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 tablespoons cold butter

Preheat oven to 400°.

In a large bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, baking powder and salt.

In another bowl, combine milk, butter, syrup, sour cream, egg and vanilla.

Stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients just until moistened (with heavy cream batter will be a bit thick).


Fill greased or paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full.

For topping, combine flour, sugar, oats, and cinnamon. Cut in butter until crumbly. Sprinkle over batter.

Blueberry muffin with crumbled topping

Bake 16-20 minutes for cupcakes or 30-35 minutes for muffins. Or bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Cool 5 minutes before removing from baking pan. Serve warm with butter or top with vanilla ice cream.

You can also opt for Greek yogurt, blueberries and maple syrup.

Blueberry Maple Cinnamon  Muffin served with yogurt and blueberries

What You Should Know When Cooking With Salt

What You Should Know When Cooking With Salt

After cooking your meal, you could add a little salt to your plated food to give it a boost, but unfortunately, it’s too late to truly bring out the flavors that the dish contains.

Woman salting skillet of cooked food

You need to be salting your food throughout the entire cooking process. As well as continuously TASTING along the way.

Most home cooks tend to under-season their meals to avoid over salting, and this, unfortunately, results in meals that are bland and boring.

Woman tasting food from skillet

Salt not only brings out the flavor the foods natural contain but it also creates a balance between sweetness and acidity.

When you season food at different stages of cooking, the salt pulls out the natural flavors of the individual ingredients and enhances their taste.

This is why it’s so important to add salt while you are cooking – you give it time to do its food flavor enhancing magic.

adding salt to  plated food

If you wait until after cooking to add salt, you’ll end up with “salty” food instead of a lively and delicious dish with deep complex flavors.

Most recipes will that tell you to “add salt to taste”. Why? The fact is, because it’s hard to really put an exact measurement for salt.

Kitchn.com (post by Emma Christensen) writes that when the recipe says salt to taste, we’re not actually looking for salty flavor.

All we’re trying to do is get rid of bitterness and make the rest of the flavors in the food stand out.

The “saltiness” of salt varies depending on its size, texture, type, and even brand.

Sizes of salt

For example: a tablespoon of coarse or Kosher salt could equal the same level of saltiness as 2 teaspoons of table salt.

This difference can make or break a meal if you are measuring salt exactly according to the instructions in a recipe and using whichever salt you have on hand.

This is why it is vitally important that you salt throughout the cooking process and taste along the way until you reach the desired outcome or flavors you are looking for.


Did you know salt is used for more than just bringing out foods flavors Read more here: The Usefulness Of Salt Around The House


Taking Care When Using Salt

It’s important though, to watch your sodium intake.

Too much sodium could contribute to high blood pressure, which may increase your risk factor for heart disease, stroke, and other health concerns.

On average, Americans consume about 3,393 mg of sodium per day, that’s about 1/2 tablespoon or 1.5 teaspoons.

The recommended dietary guidelines from the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) for Americans is to consume less than 2,300 mg of sodium per day.

According to JAMA (American Medical Association), about half of all Americans, those aged 51 years or older, African Americans of any age, and people with high blood pressure, diabetes, or chronic kidney disease, are recommended to only consume 1500 mg a day of sodium.

What Should You Do?

Eat salt in moderation and remember it is found in processed and restaurant foods in high amounts.

Therefore, your salt intake can be decreased by eating out less often, especially at fast-food restaurants and eating less prepared or packaged foods.

Cook your own meals and remember, “salt to taste.” As you want to taste the real flavors of food, not the salt.

Why We Cook

To think about cooking as purely functional would be to look at just one aspect of it. When in fact there are several reasons why we cook.

Cooking makes food more edible and in doing so cuts down on the time it takes to digest it.

Some foods we can eat raw, but there are others that need to be cooked, like meat or eggs for example.

How To Make The Perfect Egg In One Minute

Humankind has been on the earth for thousands of years and throughout the centuries we have learned the art of cooking.

Yes cooking is an art. If you are a professional-cook or not – when you put together different flavors you are creating a dish to satisfy your taste and hunger.

Frequently Asked Questions about Healthy Cooking

The More You Know

We spend just five percent (5%) of our day eating. So make the food you eat count towards a healthier you. Read more here: First Step To Being Healthy


The bottom line is, we have learned through trial and error that some foods need to be cooked.

So again, ever thought while you are preparing something to eat, why you cook it?

Why We Cook

It makes eating food safe, as cooking destroys bacteria, and the toxins they produce.

The food flavors multiple with using heat to cook. The heat browns meat, vegetables, breads, and cakes.

Roasted Root Vegetables with Brussels sprouts and Bacon

Cooking caramelizes sugar and helps herbs and spices to release their locked in flavors in a process known as the Maillard reaction.

Read More Here About Cooking With Herbs – Spices – and Caramelizing Sugar

How To Spice Thngs Up When Cooking
Spanish Flan – recipe and video on How To Carmelize Sugar

Food that has been cooked helps with your digestion as it softens starches and releases foods nutrients.

Roasted Red Potatoes with Garlic Parmesan

Cooked food tastes delicious and brings new textures to food.

Cooking To Gather Family and Friends

You may have heard the expression, make friends by “breaking bread together.”

Research has shown that the ritual of cooking and sharing your cooked food with others is entrenched in our psyche, and it brings family and friends together.

Regularly eating cooked food with others also improves our well-being.

Cooking Supports A Healthy Life Style

Here’s a great response to why we cook.

Julia A. Wolfson, MPP, lead author of a study on home cooking and weight lossat the John Hopkins Center, says if you are trying to lose weight or not, people who cook most of their meals at home, consume fewer carbohydrates, less sugar and less fat than those who cook less or not at all (Study Suggests Home Cooking is a Main Ingredient in Healthier Diet).

According to Civil Eats – The power of a communal meal, or eating together – either it be a Thanksgiving feast, a community potluck, or a dinner-table gathering can build cultural ties and tear down political walls.

So now you know. Let’s get cooking.

Spicy Grilled Brussels Sprouts

Spicy Grilled Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts are compact rounded leaves tightly bound into individual spherical-shaped heads ranging in diameter of one to two inches when mature.

Human hand  filled with Brussels  Sprouts

The younger the Brussels sprouts, the sweeter and more palatable flavor they contain.

The vegetable is available year-round.


Read More Here About Brussels Sprouts and Their Nutritional Value – Creamy Brussels Sprouts Casserole

Preparing Brussels Sprouts


Classic cooking of Brussels sprouts include roasting, braising or pan frying them. You can use butter with savory spices such as garlic, shallots, thyme, rosemary and sage.

Culinarily companions include pork belly, cheese, cream, duck fat, eggs, ham, grapefruit, olive oil, cider vinegar, lemon, hollandaise, maple, mushrooms, mustard, nutmeg, pepper, pistachios and pancetta.


Try This Recipe – Roasted Root Vegetables with Brussels sprouts and Bacon

Spicy Grilled Brussels Sprouts

1 lb burssels sprouts, trimmed and halved

3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

2 tsp lemon juice, more for later

1/2tsp. garlic powder

Kosher salt and black pepper

1 tsp. Moroccan inspired Harissa spice mix

pinch crushed red pepper, to your liking

grated Parmesan cheese, to your liking

In a large bowl add prepared Brussels sprouts. Next add oil, lemon juice, and spices. Mix well and set aside.

Place aluminum sheets on bbq grill. Heat bbq grill then add prepared Brussels sprouts and grill until slightly charred, about 15 minutes.

Remove from grill. Add a few squeezes of lemon juice and 2 – 3 tablespoons of Parmesan cheese, or your liking. Mix in well.

Plate with your favorite protein and a salad.

Platted grilled Brussels sprouts with chicken and salad

Burritos With Homemade Flour Tortillas

The flour tortilla is a variant of the corn tortilla and its name comes from the Spanish language meaning “small cake”.

Flour tortillas originated in the northern Mexican states of Chihuahua, Durango, Sonora and Sinaloa, where it is more suitable to grow wheat than corn.

In more recent times both the flour and corn tortillas have become both integral to Mexican and Tex-Mex cuisine.

Commercial Made Flour Tortillas

The flour tortilla production is one of the fastest growing bakery products in the United States.

This could be due primarily to the rapid growth of the Hispanic population in the US. And the demand for tortillas has bolstered over the past five years (2015-2020).

To make the tortilla a more attractive food to consumers other than Hispanics, many flour tortilla producers have added nutritional content to their products, such as including tomato, and spinach flavors.

There are whole wheat tortillas produced which have particularly attracted health-conscious consumers who view tortillas as a healthier alternative to bread.

A flour tortilla or wheat tortilla is a soft, thin flatbread from finely ground wheat flour.

The simplest recipes use only flour, water, a fat (usually vegetable oil – in Mexico it would be lard) and salt.

But commercially made flour tortillas generally contain chemical leavening agents such as baking powder, and other ingredients including lime juice.

Homemade flour tortillas are made with four simple ingredients, flour, salt, vegetable oil, and water.

Homemade Burritos Your Way

The flour tortilla is the base to preparing wraps or burritos among other preparations.

Just warm the tortilla, lay flat, and start to place the ingredients you desire in your burrito, than wrap it up and enjoy.

Burritos are one of those meals that truly never get old. Whether you prefer a spicy meat burrito or just a plain bean and cheese, there are a million ways to customize your wrap.

Use these homemade tortillas for fajitas, breakfast burritos, enchiladas, soft tacos to simply wrapping up a salad for an easy to eat lunch.

Ranch Steak with Maple Honey Mustard Sauce

Ranch Steak with fries

If you like a steak that is all meat and no fat, but you don’t want to pay the premiums attached to the Fillet and the Ribeye, then you found the right recipe.

Most of us have never heard of the ranch cut steak.

Most butchers and beef buffs claim the ranch steak is a great alternative to the more expensive cuts such as Sirloin Tip or the Flat Iron Steak.

The ranch cut steak comes from the shoulder area of the cow (Chuck), were the muscle is worked a little leading to it lacking the tenderness of some other cuts of beef.

But this cut of meat doesn’t lack in flavor.

A Ranch steak is trimmed of all excess fat, silver skin, and connective tissue so that it’s very lean.

It must also be free of the strip of gristle running through the middle.

Ranch Steak

You don’t need to worry about removing the fat, connective tissue or gristle, as the meat is bought already prepared for you.

The name Ranch Steak is simply a commercialized name for the Boneless Chuck Shoulder Center Cut steak, a name that is short and easier to remember.

Because it isn’t an easy cook tender cut like a Ribeye or a Sirloin, it shouldn’t be cooked past medium, unless of course you like a chewy steak that gives your jaw a good workout.

Ranch Steak with Maple Honey Mustard Sauce

2 – 4 ounce Ranch Steaks

1 tbsp. olive oil

Sauce

1 tbsp. Grainy Honey Mustard sauce

2 tbsp. Maple syrup

1 tbsp. coconut oil

1 tsp. fresh minced garlic

salt and black pepper

In a small bowl, combine first four ingredients, season with the salt and pepper to taste and whisk until well combined. Set aside.

Season the steaks with salt and freshly black pepper.

In a large skillet over medium heat add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and heat.

Add steaks and cook both sides about 3-4 minutes (medium cooked steak), cook longer for more doneness.

Remove from pan and let steaks rest.


Business Insider writes an article on 19 Facts All True Steak Lovers Should Know.

In respects to letting your steak rest, they write, “Let your steak rest for half the amount of time you cooked it. This will let the juices retract and stay inside the meat, not on the plate.”

Ranch Steak Resting

Letting a steak rest after grilling or pan frying it has nothing to do with it being tired.

Resting a steak has everything to do with wanting it to be as juicy as possible.

Cooking a steak causes the cells of the meat to release its juices as it heats up. As long as you do not cook the steak past medium-rare, the cells will not burst.

As the steak cools a little the cells will return to their shape and will reabsorb the juices back into the meat.


To same large skillet add maple mustard honey sauce and heat. Stir frequently until sauce thickens some. Remove from heat.

Cut steaks and plate. Pour sauce over steaks and serve with your favorite side dish.

We suggest you serve the ranch steaks with seasoned roasted carrots and potatoes.

Plate of potato and carrot fries

Cut two medium sized carrots and 1 medium potato into 1/4 inch thick fries. Mix with olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper.

Place fries onto a baking sheet lined with foil. Drizzle some turkey or chicken gravy over fries (about 1 – 2 tablespoons) and bake in a 425 degree pre-heated oven for 10-15 minutes.

Remove from oven and turn oven broiler on high. Place rack about 4-5 inches from broiler and place fries under broiler until they brown in some spots, about 1-2 minutes.

Plate steak and fries. Enjoy!!

Ranch Steak with  Maple Honey Mustard Sauce

Tortellini Primavera with Cajun Shrimp

Tortellini are ring-shaped pasta, sometimes also described as “navel shaped”, hence their alternative name – “belly button” (ombelico).

Originally from the Italian region of Emilia (in particular Bologna and Modena), they are usually stuffed with a mix of meat, which is pork loin, raw prosciutto, and Mortadella.

It also contains Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, egg and nutmeg.

The Origins of Tortellini

Legend claims that Venus and Zeus were weary after a day of worrying that they stared at a near by inn.

It is said that night the innkeeper went up to their room and peeked through the key hole to see the navel of Venus.

The site of seeing this leaves him spellbound – so much so that he immediately rushes to the kitchen and creates a pasta inspired by Venus’ navel…and so was born the Tortellini.

IS ALL OF THAT TRUE – you ask?

I don’t really know – But that’s what Barrilla (the pasta makers) write on their website – titled What Is The Origin Of Tortellini.

The Italian Tradition of Tortellini

In the land of pasta tortellini’s birth, the region near the Italian city of Bologna, they’re strictly served as broth-like dumplings.

Tortellini in Broth
Tortellini in Broth – Image Source: La Cucina Italiana

There in Bologna a tortellini has never been served as a Pasta Primavera and no less served with Cajun shrimp.

Cajun shrimp over pasta

Gianni degli Angeli is the president of the San Nicola Association, which has taken on the task of safeguarding the local region’s renowned culinary traditions.

He says the No. 1 symbol of the local gastronomic culture is the tortellino.

“In times of poverty and hardship, we ate tortellini only at Christmas, Easter and at weddings, because the filling is made of costly ingredients like prosciutto and parmesan cheese,” he says.

Tortellini are an integral part of family life in the Emilia region, says Massimo Bottura, chef and owner of a three-Michelin-star restaurant in Modena.

He says, “I grew up under the kitchen table escaping my older brothers at my grandmother’s, where flour fell on my feet”(source: NPR).

Cajun Shrimp

These spicy smoked cajun shrimp bring a lot of pizazz to the pasta dish.

Use as much or as little smoked Cajun pepper as you’d like, depending on your taste and those you cook for.

Jar  on plate with smoked Cajun  spice
Smoked Cajun Pepper Spice

The smoked Cajun pepper spice is a mix of:

• Smoked Paprika

• Black Pepper

• Chilli Flakes

• Dried Thyme

• Dried Oregano

• Garlic Powder

• Onion Powder

If the spice you are using for the shrimp is a Creole Cajun Seasoning, it would have all of the seasonings noted above, with the addition of dried parsley and basil.

Tortellini Primavera with Cajun Shrimp

1 package (20 ounces) refrigerated cheese tortellini

3/4 cup sweet peas, fresh or frozen

2 medium sized carrots cut into 1/4 inch circles

3 cups broccoli florets, stems removed

12-15 large shrimp, shell, head and guts remove

2 tbsp unsalted butter

1 tsp. smoked Cajun pepper spice

Sauce

1/2 cup unsalted butter

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 cup of heavy cream

1 cup of finely grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 teaspoon of freshly grated nutmeg

Bring a pot of water to a boil. Cook the tortellini according to package directions. Drain and set aside.

While pasta is cooking in potted water, add 2 tablespoons of butter to a large skillet over medium heat, and let melt.

Next place shrimp over butter and sauté for about a minute then sprinkle Cajun spice over shrimp and continue to cook shrimp on both sides until pink.

Shrimp in  a frying pan

Remove skillet from heat and spoon shrimp onto a plate and set aside.

Next, wipe skillet clean and return to heat.

Add the 1/2 cup butter to warmed skillet and melt. Once butter is melted add the garlic, stir and cook until garlic is fragrant about 1 minute.

Next add heavy cream, cheese, and nutmeg and mix well.

Next add vegetables and stir in. Allow to warm about 2 or 3 minutes.

Next add pasta and mix in well.

Two options: mix shrimp with pasta and vegetables or plate pasta and top with shrimp.

Coconut Basil Chicken Curry with Vegetables

Coconut Chicken Curry with Vegetables

There is a variety of dishes or plated food that is prepared with curry originating in the Indian subcontinent.

Though curry dishes make up a significant part of India’s food culture, there is vastly more to Indian cuisine than curry.

Curry powder though is not used in India, as authentic curry dishes from India use the leaves of the curry tree, which is related to the citrus family.

Curry leaves of the curry tree

The powder is a blend of different spices which may or may not include curry leaves.

The spices usually include ground turmeric, cumin, coriander, ginger, and fresh or dried chilies among others.

Bowl of curry powder on a wood deck

Who Invented The Curry Powder

If curry powder is not a spice mix in authentic Indian cuisine, who then coined the term curry powder?

The term curry powder was coined by the British according to the author of the book, “The Oxford Companion to Food.”

The Oxford Companion to Food

The author Alan Davidson writes, “the kind sold commercially represents an attempt by the British manufactures to provide in ready-made form a spice mixture corresponding to those uses in South India.”

You will not find a dish in India prepared with the spice mix called curry powder, but rather only with curry leaves.

In other parts of the world, when you here the word curry, it invokes an image of warm, spicy, delicious food. Such as our Coconut Basil Chicken Curry.

This dish is incredibly fragrant with coconut milk as its base.

After the curry is finished, you add fresh lemon juice, lemon zest, chopped cilantro and basil then stir in, and wait for the herbs aromatic fresh smells to get your taste buds going.

Lemon zest basil and cilantro over a pot of curry

Coconut Basil Chicken Curry with Vegetables

1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs or breasts, thinly sliced

1 1/2 tablespoons yellow curry powder

1 teaspoon ground turmeric

1/4-1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper using more or less to your taste

kosher salt and black pepper

3 tablespoons sesame oil or extra virgin olive oil

2 zucchini or summer squash, diced

2 ears sweet corn, kernels removed from the cob

2-3 medium shallots, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced or grated

1 inch fresh ginger, grated

1 pinch crushed red pepper flakes

1 can (14 ounce) coconut milk

juice and zest from 1/2 a lemon

1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

1/4 cup fresh basil, roughly torn

2 cups cooked basmati rice

toasted sesame seeds for serving (optional)

In a medium bowl, toss together the chicken, curry powder, turmeric, cayenne, 1 tablespoon oil, and a pinch each of salt and pepper.

Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When the oil shimmers, add the chicken and brown all over, about 5 minutes.

Skillet of curry chicken

Next add the zucchini, corn, shallots, garlic, and ginger. Season with crushed red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Cook the veggies another 5-10 minutes or until they just begin to soften.

Stir in the coconut milk and 1/3-1/2 cup water. Stir to combine, bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat, cook 5-10 minutes or until the sauce thickens slightly. If the sauce thickens too much, add additional water to thin.

Remove from the heat and stir in the zest, lemon juice, cilantro, and basil.

Serve along side or top over rice.

Coconut Basil Chicken Curry with Vegetables

Pecan Praline Bar Cookies

According to Wikipedia’s research, praline is is a form of confection containing at a minimum culinary nuts, usually almonds and hazelnuts, and sugar. Cream is also a common third ingredient.

Homemade Praline with Chopped Pecans

There are three types:

  • Belgian
  • French
  • American
Belgian Praline Sweets

Praline is prepared and used as a filling in chocolates and other sweets.

A praline cookie is usually a cookie base topped with praline and nuts.

Pecan Praline Cookiephoto source: the view from great island

Preparing and Baking Pecan Praline Cookie Bars

The same as a cookie but only in a bar. The cookie or bars have a shortbread base.

1 1/4 cups unsalted butter

 2 cups flour

 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar

1/2 tsp salt

 1/3 cup honey

2 Tbsp heavy whipping cream

 2 cups pecan pieces

Baking Instructions

Heat oven to 350°F.

To prepare crust place flour, 3/4 cup butter, and 1/2 cup brown sugar in food processor and pulse until mixture forms small lumps.

Place in a 9 x 13-inch baking pan and pat crust mixture evenly across bottom of baking dish.

Bake 20 minutes or until light golden. Remove from oven.

While crust bakes, melt remaining butter in a heavy 2-quart saucepan over medium heat.

Stir in honey and cream, then dissolve remaining brown sugar. Bring to a boil.

Cook 1 minute, remove from heat and stir in pecans.

Pour topping evenly over hot crust.

Return to oven and bake 20 minutes longer or until topping is browned and bubbling.

Let cool for about 15-20 minutes – than cut into squares and serve.

Optional to serve with vanilla ice cream.

Herb Panko Mozzarella Cheese Sticks

Herb Panko Mozzarella Cheese Sticks

Mozzarella sticks ate a go to appetizer. Their a finger-food that everyone at the table scrambles to snatch up while the cheese is still hot and extra pull-able or gooey.

Their also a big hit as a happy hour snack.

They’re served on party platters, for lunch and at brunch.

Party platter with mozzarella  cheese sticks

Mozzarella sticks are no cheesy joke, just gooey and delicious.

Deep-fried cheese has been said to originate in Paris, France in the 15th century.

However, recipes for breaded cheese sticks can be traced back to 1393. The original recipe called for the use of Muenster cheese instead of Mozzarella.

According to Vision Launch (who writes about the history of cheese) traditional Mozzarella was made using milk from the Water Buffalo.

What Is Panko

With a unique name, panko is simply a type of breadcrumb.

Panko is a Japanese culinary invention. The word panko in Japanese is “pan” meaning bread and “ko” meaning flour.

Herb Panko breadcrumbs

Authentic panko is baked using a pan connected to an electrical current. The finished product has no crust.

The reason the bread is baked this way is not well documented.

But Upper Crust Enterprises, a company that makes authentic panko in LosAngeles (USA), claims this method started during WWII, when Japanese soldiers fighting the Russians needed to bake bread.

With no oven for baking, they reportedly used electric current to cook bread, creating a product still made today.

If you’re looking for a crisp, crunchy texture when you bake or fry something breaded or with bread crumbs, panko is the way to go.

Herb Panko Mozzarella Cheese Sticks

Mozzarella cheese sticks are a irresistible combination of gooey melted cheese and crisp, golden breading.

  • 1 pound fresh mozzarella, patted dry and cut into sticks or individually wrapped cheese sticks
  • 1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup herb Panko breadcrumbs
  • Avocado oil or other neutral-flavored oil, for frying
  • Marinara, warmed, for serving or optional to serve with Tzatziki Sauce

Cut mozzarella lengthwise into 1/2-inch-thick slices, then cut again into 4-by-1/2-inch sticks.

Place flour in a shallow dish and season with salt and pepper.

Whisk eggs in a separate dish and season with salt and pepper.

Place mozzarella sticks in flour and coat, tapping off excess flour.

Next dip into eggs batter allowing excess to drip off, and coat with breadcrumbs, patting to adhere.

Transfer mozzarella sticks to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Freeze until firm, at least 1 hour. (Mozzarella sticks can be covered and frozen at this point up to 2 months.)

Breaded mozzarella cheese sticks  on parchment paper

Pour enough oil into a heavy pot (preferably cast iron) to come 2 inches up sides. Heat over medium-high until a deep-fry thermometer reads 350 degrees.

Working in batches, add mozzarella sticks; cook, turning occasionally, until golden and crisp, 2 to 3 minutes (adjust heat as necessary to maintain oil temperature.)

Transfer to a wire rack set over a rimmed baking sheet to drain.

Plate and serve with marinara sauce or optional to serve with tzatziki sauce.