These Fried Mozzarella Balls with Pumpkin, Sage and Caramelized Onion are the perfect holiday appetizer!
Take your party to the next level with these Fried Mozzarella Balls. They are crunchy on the outside, gooey on the inside and served with Yogurt Herb Dip. Everyone will ask for the recipe!
We’ve officially entered party season. There will be casual Halloween parties, cozy dinners with friends for Thanksgiving and elegant family dinners for Christmas and New Years. And no matter how chill or formal the affair, there must be appetizers.
Now, I don’t make fried food often, but the holidays call for a little indulgence. So today I bring you melty Fried Mozzarella Balls that are certifiably foodie.
See that ooey, gooey mozzarella? It’s flavored with caramelized onions, shredded pumpkin and freshly chopped sage. It’s a combo that is sweet, savory and so seasonal. Memorable flavors that will have guests asking for the recipe.
The secret to super crunchy mozzarella balls is rolling the filling twice in the egg and breadcrumbs. And boy do these Fried Mozzarella Balls have a gorgeous, delicious golden brown crust. They are great on their own but of course I had to make a dip too!
This yogurt herb dip is tangy, full of herbs, a splash of lemon juice and a bit of Parmesan for saltiness. It’s an awesome compliment to the savory and sweet Fried Mozzarella Balls, but its also great with fresh veggies. It’s such a refreshing sauce that you’ll want to dip everything in it!
All parties call for appetizers. If you’re mingling with cocktails you need something to snack on. Same goes for dinner parties. When does the main course ever hit the table on time? Never in my world, but everyone will wait patiently if there are munchies. Who can complain when their mouth is full?
And I hate to brag but these Fried Mozzarella Balls are so yummy that you can run out of beer, burn the turkey and forget the ice cream… they will still be happy!
Our neighbor came over this past weekend and we enjoyed cocktails by the glow of the fire pit. It was the perfect opportunity to test out some upcoming recipes. We totally pigged out! We ate some leftover Pumpkin Chicken Chili, an apple dessert, and these Fried Mozzarella Balls. The dessert needs another test run but this amazing appetizer was declared a winner! Not only were they tasty, they were quite filling. The recipe makes 15-20 balls, so plan on about 2-3 per person, depending on what other munchies you plan to serve.
Speaking of menus, I’d love to hear what you have planned for the season. I’ve been thinking about what I’m going to make for Thanksgiving…so many recipes to choose from! But I’ll definitely be serving these Fried Mozzarella Balls! I know my mom will love them!
In the meantime, I think I’m going to make some Lemon Chicken Noodle Soup because I have come down with a cold. Let’s hope I rebound before Halloween, because it’s my favorite holiday! And I have to show off my new tombstone prop! Fingers crossed…
Fried Mozzarella Balls with Pumpkin, Sage and Caramelized Onion
Yogurt Herb Dip
- ½ cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1 clove garlic , mashed to a paste
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons fresh chives , finely chopped
- 4 teaspoons parsley , finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon cilantro , finely chopped
- ½ tsp sage , finely chopped
- ¼ cup Parmesan , grated
- salt and pepper to taste
Fried Mozzarella Balls
- 2 cups onion , diced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- pinch salt
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 cup fresh pumpkin , grated and packed firmly
- 2 tablespoons sage. finely chopped
- 1½ cups mozzarella , grated
- 3 eggs
- 3 cups fine bread crumbs
- 6-8 cups oil for frying
- Parsley and Parmesan for garnish if desired
Yogurt Herb Dip
- Mix together all ingredients and season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Fried Mozzarella Balls
- Heat a tablespoon of oil in a skillet over medium low heat.
- Add onions, pinch of salt and sugar and cook stirring often until onions have caramelized, about 40 minutes. If the pan becomes dry, add a teaspoon of water or two.
- Transfer onions to a bowl to cool.
- If necessary, add more oil to the pan, turn up heat to medium and add the pumpkin.
- Stirring often, cook the pumpkin until it softens, about 3-4 minutes.
- Add the pumpkin to the onions and transfer to the fridge to cool.
- Once the onions and pumpkin have cooled, add in the sage and mozzarella and mix thoroughly.
- Season the mixture with salt and pepper to taste.
- Crack eggs into a shallow bowl and beat well with a fork.
- In another bowl, place bread crumbs and season with a pinch of salt and a little cracked black pepper.
- Roll mozzarella mixture into quarter sized balls, dip in egg and coat with bread crumbs.
- Repeat the breading with the egg and breadcrumbs to double coat mozzarella balls. At this point you can cover and refrigerate the mozzarella balls for a few hours if desired.
- Heat oil to 360F in a heavy bottomed pan (a candy thermometer is handy here).
- Fry 3-4 balls at a time until golden brown, about 90 seconds to two minutes.
- Drain on a plate covered with paper towels and transfer to a warm oven until they're all fried.
- Serve immediately with Yogurt Herb Dip
- Most of the time spent making this recipe is caramelizing the onions. They can be made in advance and frozen if you're planning to prep these for a party.
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