Mozzarella Sticks

Mike loves mozzarella sticks.  We would go to Costco and buy the large package of mozzarella sticks.  I tried to tell him that they are pretty unhealthy, but he thinks they are a great snack.  He would take a few out of the box every night and warm them up.  Sometimes he would make a whole meal out of them!

I decided to try to make my own since I was tired of having a big box of mozzarella sticks taking up room in my freezer all the time.  I also figured that it was probably cheaper to make my own as well.  

It’s actually not very hard to make your own mozzarella sticks.  It is a little time consuming, but most of that time is spent waiting for the cheese to firm up in the freezer.  It also takes time to preheat the oven, but the oven will be heating up while the cheese is chilling.  You could also spend this time making a 30 minute meal and have dinner ready too!

Mozzerella Sticks - 1

Mozzarella Sticks
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Recipe type: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • ¼ cup all purpose flour
  • ¾ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs, toasted*
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 8 ounces string cheese sticks, cut in half
  • Vegetable oil spray (such as Pam)
  • Dipping sauce, optional
Instructions
  1. Adjust the oven rack so that it is in the middle position. Preheat the oven to 475 F after placing the cheese in the freezer. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.
  2. In a shallow plate, mix together flour and garlic powder. In another shallow plate (or small bowl), whisk the egg whites until they are foamy. In a third shallow plate, mix the panko bread crumbs, basil, oregano and salt. Coating the string cheese will be much easier if all of the plates are next to each other, in the order listed, along with a large plate next to the panko mixture.
  3. Working with one piece of cheese at a time, dredge the cheese in the flour mixture. Then dip the cheese in the eggs. Finally, coat the cheese with the panko mixture and place on the large plate. Repeat with remaining pieces of cheese. Make sure that the cheese is in a single layer on the plate (I only needed one plate, but use multiple plates if needed), and that that they do not touch each other.
  4. Place the cheese in the freezer and chill until they are firm, about 30 minutes.
  5. Spray the lined baking sheet with the vegetable oil spray so that there is a light coating of oil covering the whole bottom of the sheet. Place cheese in a single layer on the baking sheet, making sure that the pieces do not touch. Lightly spray the coated cheese pieces with the vegetable oil. Bake the cheese until warm, about 8 to 10 minutes.
  6. Serve hot with dipping sauce if desired.
Notes
* Toasting Panko in the oven:
1. Preheat oven to 475 F.
2. Spread panko in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until panko is golden brown, about 7-10 minutes.

*Toasting Panko on the stove:
1. In a large skillet, place desired amount of breadcrumbs. Heat the breadcrumbs over medium heat, stirring often, until the breadcrumbs are golden brown, about 5-10 minutes.

Adapted from  Comfort Food Makeovers

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