Gooey Stringy Mozzarella Sticks Recipe

Mozzarella sticks have been a typical All-American bar food, populating the pub-inspired menus of chain restaurants for years and years. As with so many food inventions, though, they have roots in a much older dish — the concept of batter-dipped fried cheese seems to date back to medieval France. While this appetizer might seem like something you'd order from Applebee's, recipe developer Jennine Rye notes that, "These gooey stringy mozzarella sticks are really simple to make." She also points out that they're quite an upgrade from the store-bought kind.

The best thing about this snack is that it goes straight from freezer to fryer. This means that even though this recipe makes 16 sticks, you can cook up just two or three at a time, making them what Rye calls "a great make-ahead batch food." Once you decide to cook the mozzarella sticks, it will take a certain amount of time to heat up the oil, but Rye says that "deep frying them creates a perfectly crispy golden crust while allowing the mozzarella inside to melt," so she feels it's worth the effort.

Assemble the ingredients for these gooey, stringy mozzarella sticks

The main ingredient in this dish is mozzarella — a block of it, as shredded simply won't work here. It will also need to be the low-moisture variety typically found in the supermarket alongside other packaged cheeses, as opposed to the more watery fresh kind you might find in the gourmet section. (Water and oil do not mix, after all.) To make the breading, you'll need flour, cornstarch, eggs, and breadcrumbs along with paprika, garlic powder, salt, and pepper for seasoning. You will also need a high smoke point oil such as vegetable or canola for the deep frying.

Cut the mozzarella into sticks

Chop the mozzarella into 16 sticks that are more or less equal in size. This isn't as hard as it sounds, since basically you're cutting the block in half, then in half again, then cutting these halves in half, and these halves in half again. (Okay, it sounds way more complicated when you describe it than when you do it, but you'll see.)

Bread the mozzarella sticks

Once you've done all the mathematical stuff and the knife-work as described above, mix the flour and cornstarch, preferably in a shallow bowl. Beat the eggs for 30 seconds in a similar bowl. While Rye tells us that cold eggs don't mix quite as smoothly as warmer ones, she admits that in this recipe "it definitely isn't a big priority to use room temperature eggs," so you don't need to wait until the eggs warm up if you've forgotten to get them out of the refrigerator until now. Use a third shallow bowl to blend the breadcrumbs with the seasonings.

Take each mozzarella stick and do the triple dip: first flour, then eggs, then breadcrumbs. Once all of the sticks have been dipped, put them in the freezer for at least 2 hours. (It will help if you put them on some sort of plate or pan first.)

Fry the mozzarella sticks

When you want to cook any or all of the sticks, heat the cooking oil in a large, heavy pot or deep fryer until it reaches 350 F, using a deep-fry thermometer to check the temperature. Fry the sticks for about 1 or 2 minutes, working in batches if you're cooking a bunch of them. Once they're golden brown, take them out of the oil. Rye says the cheese should be "gorgeously gooey and stringy" by this point, as well, but you'll have to wait until the grease drains off (use paper towels for this) and the sticks cool down a bit before you break, cut, or bite into one to see for yourself.

If you want a dip for your mozzarella sticks, Rye favors salsa, whereas marinara sauce is what's typically served in restaurants. You could also try ketchup, gravy, mustard, or whatever other condiments you have in the refrigerator. Even raspberry jelly could work for a sort of Monte Cristo sandwich effect. Mozzarella sticks are best if they're hot, but the easiest way to avoid leftovers, as we've mentioned several times, is to cook up only as many as you plan to eat and leave the rest in the freezer.

Gooey Stringy Mozzarella Sticks Recipe
5 from 31 ratings
Skip the overpriced pub appetizer and make your own gooey, stringy mozzarella sticks right at home.
Prep Time
Cook Time
mozzarella sticks on plate
Total time: 2 hours, 12 minutes
  • 1 (14-ounce) block low-moisture mozzarella cheese
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • oil, for frying
  1. Slice the block of mozzarella into 16 equal-sized sticks.
  2. In a wide, flat-bottomed bowl, mix together the flour and cornstarch. In a second wide, flat-bottomed bowl, crack the eggs and whisk them together for 30 seconds. In a third, wide, flat-bottomed bowl, combine together the breadcrumbs, paprika, garlic powder, dried oregano, salt, and pepper.
  3. Once the 3 bowls have been prepared, use a set of tongs and dip each of the mozzarella sticks into the flour, then into the egg mixture, then finally into the breadcrumb mixture. Once each mozzarella stick is coated, place it onto a plate or wire rack.
  4. Once all of the mozzarella sticks are coated in breadcrumbs, place them into the freezer for at least 2 hours.
  5. When ready to cook the mozzarella sticks, preheat a deep fryer to 350 F. Alternatively, you can heat the oil in a large pot on the stovetop. When the oil has reached 350 F, add the frozen mozzarella sticks and allow them to fry for 1-2 minutes, until the outsides are golden brown and the cheese is melted.
  6. Remove from the fryer, drain on a paper towel, and enjoy the mozzarella sticks with a dipping sauce of your choice.
Calories per Serving 251
Total Fat 17.8 g
Saturated Fat 6.1 g
Trans Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 56.1 mg
Total Carbohydrates 12.8 g
Dietary Fiber 0.6 g
Total Sugars 0.9 g
Sodium 311.3 mg
Protein 9.8 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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