These Air Fryer Mozzarella Sticks Are Dangerously Good
2024/02/01

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Crispy, melty mozzarella sticks are a favorite appetizer, especially during  season. But we think they're even better homemade, especially when you use your . This handy countertop appliance ensures golden, crunchy results—without all the oil! The only thing that could make this better? A bowl of marinara for dipping!

How do you make  crispy air fryer mozzarella sticks?

The key to a crispy, crunchy texture is to make sure there's ample room between each stick when air frying. Overcrowding the air fryer basket can prevent the air from circulating properly resulting is not-so-crispy mozzarella sticks.

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How long should you air fry mozzarella sticks?

Because air fryers range in size and power, we recommend starting to check on each batch after about 5 minutes. At 390 degrees, you'll likely need between 6 and 7 minutes. A good rule of thumb: Once you see any cheese start to bubble out, they're ready. 

How do you keep mozzarella sticks from exploding in the air fryer?

Freezing the mozzarella sticks and doubling up on the breadcrumb coating helps to prevent too much cheese spillage in the air fryer. In this , after the mozzarella sticks are dredged in eggs, flour, eggs (again), and breadcrumbs, they're frozen for 30 minutes. After the initial freeze, they're dipped in eggs and covered with more breadcrumbs before being frozen for another 30 minutes. Be sure to firmly press the bread crumbs in to each cheese stick so that the gooey cheese stays inside of the coating. 

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How do you season mozzarella sticks?

A touch of paprika adds an extra layer of flavor and gives these snacks a smoked mozzarella taste. But the spice variation possibilities are endless—Colby Jack or pepper Jack sticks can be substituted for the plain mozzarella variety, too.

How long do mozzarella sticks last in the freezer?

Want to prep a batch of air fryer mozzarella sticks and store them in the freezer for future snacking? Be our guest! You can prepare the mozzarella sticks through step 4. Once the sticks are frozen solid, transfer them to an airtight container or zip-top bag and store in the freezer for up to 6 months. Air fry the sticks straight from frozen anytime a craving strikes!

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8

mozzarella string cheese sticks 

3

large eggs

1 tbsp.

water

1/2 c.

breadcrumbs

1/2 c.

panko breadcrumbs

1 tsp.

Italian seasoning blend

1/4 tsp.

garlic powder

1/4 tsp.

smoked paprika

1/3 c.

all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp.

salt

1/4 tsp.

ground black pepper

Nonstick cooking spray

Marinara sauce, to serve

Step  1 Cut the cheese sticks in half, crosswise. Set aside. Step  2 In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs and water. In another small bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, panko, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, and smoked paprika, stirring well. In a third bowl, combine the flour, salt, and pepper, stirring well. Step  3 Dip each of the cheese sticks into the egg mixture, then dredge in the flour mixture. Dip back into the eggs, then dredge in the bread crumb mixture, pressing to coat well.

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Step  4 Place the sticks on a small parchment-lined baking sheet. Freeze for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, dip each of the sticks back into the eggs, then dredge in the breadcrumb mixture, pressing to coat well. Freeze for 30 minutes more. Step  5 Preheat the air fryer to 390°F, if required. Spray the fryer basket with cooking spray. Generously coat the frozen sticks with cooking spray. Working in 2 batches, place the sticks in the basket in a single layer. Cook 6 to 7 minutes or until browned and crispy. (Keep an eye on them so they do not overcook or the cheese will start to bubble out.) Step  6 Serve immediately with warm marinara sauce.

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