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Deep Fried Panko Babybel

Is there anything better than deep fried cheese? Crispy outside, melty & gooey inside. Here’s a simple 10 minute appetizer that everyone will love (unless you’re dairy intolerant that is 😉 . And it looks great too.

When you think of deep fried cheese, you usually think of cheese “sticks”. That is, buy a block of cheese, cut it into chunks, bread and deep fry. This version is a bit different and even easier as the cheese we are going to use is Babybel. Those tasty little spheroids of gouda with the obnoxious TV commercials. (OK, so Babybel isn’t exactly top line cheese but we’re deep frying it people!). There’s no risky cheese chunking and they are quite attractive on the plate.

The recipe is simple:

  • 1 egg
  • 1 pkg Babybel gouda* (6pcs)
  • Salt, Pepper, Cayenne or Chipoltle to taste
  • 3/4 cup Panko Bread crumbs. Because I’m gluten free, I used Kinnikinnick GF panko crumbs but any bread crumb should work. Use a Panko crumb if possible as it provides a crispier coating.
  • 2 cups oil for frying

*Babybel does make Swiss & Cheddar “Flavoured” cheeses but I don’t think they actually are swiss & cheddar so I’d say stick with gouda.

Lightly beat the egg in a small dish

Peel the wax coating from the cheese (I didn’t have to tell you that right?)

One at a time, dip the cheese in the egg, coating it completely.

Add spices to breadcrumbs and mix

Roll the egg coated cheese in the crumb. Place on a plate. Repeat for remainder.

Let rest for 5 minutes. (don’t cheat here, this is important!)

Carefully repeating the egg and crumb process with the already coated cheese. This double coating is the secret to a really great deep fried cheese. You need a good coating of crumb so that the cheese is trapped and doesn’t melt out into the oil. This trick gives you the best crunch. By letting the first layer of crumb set with the egg, you also reduce the chance of the crumb falling off in the oil.

Deep fry 1 or 2 at a time in about 350* oil for about 2 minutes or until golden brown and cheese is just beginning to oooooze out.

Remove from oil and pat with paper towel to remove excess oil. Serve immediately. I haven’t tried this but you could probably prepare these in advance and reheat in the oven for about 10 minutes @ 200*F. Not quite the same but if you are serving lots, it may be an option.

Serve with you favorite dipping sauce. Some ideas

Wasabi Mayo – Mayonnaise, Lemon Juice, Salt & Wasabi powder (probably not a good sauce if you added anything but salt & pepper to the breadcrumbs)

Chipotle Mayo – Mayonnaise, Lemon Juice, Salt & Chipotle Chili powder

Fresh Basil, Garlic, Lemon Juice & Olive Oil

Update: just as I published this I had an additional idea that you could easily put a slit in the Babybel and stuff them with various things prior to coating with the crumb. Well, by various, I mean bacon. But you could use any cooked meat (bacon, crab, shrimp etc) or maybe roasted garlic clove, pickled asparagus, hot pickled peppers. Mmmm. (I need to go eat something…)

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