Baked Mozzarella Sticks

by in Robin's Healthy Take, June 25, 2012

Baked Mozzarella Sticks

Since most Americans dine out more than four times each week, we’re only in complete control of what we eat less than half of the time. In an ideal world, we’d know exactly what we’re consuming both at home and out — right? Consider one of America’s favorite appetizers, fried mozzarella, and read the stats:

Restaurant Fried Mozzarella Sticks
Nutrition Info Per Serving (range in numbers reflects different restaurants)
Calories: 660-770
Total Fat: 35-46 grams
Saturated Fat: 15-24 grams
Total Carbohydrate: 54 grams
Sugars: not listed
Protein: 32-36 grams
Sodium: 1510-2040 milligrams
Cholesterol: not listed
Fiber: 1-7 grams

And it’s usually eaten as a starter, even though it maxes out your fat and sodium intake for the entire day. For those days when you’re home but want a restaurant-style treat, I’ve got the perfect solution. My baked mozzarella sticks have less than half the calories and 1/3 the fat and sodium of their restaurant counterparts. Even better – they boast the same herb-infused, crispy exterior and soft gooey cheese center. Try ‘em this week and let me know what you think!

Baked Mozzarella Sticks
I’ve also made the sticks with the swirled cheese sticks – mozzarella and cheddar. I like to serve these mozzarella sticks with a good marinara sauce that I’ve warmed in the microwave.

Note: I refrigerate the breaded cheese sticks for 10 minutes before baking to make sure the cheese doesn’t over-melt in the oven. You can actually refrigerate the breaded cheese sticks for up to 24 hours (meaning you can prep ahead).

Cooking spray
1 cup panko bread crumbs
1/3 cup Italian style dry bread crumbs
1 teaspoon salt-free Italian seasoning
3/4 cup nonfat milk
1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
16 (1-ounce) sticks low-moisture, part-skim mozzarella cheese, halved crosswise

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Coat two large baking sheets with cooking spray.

Combine panko, bread crumbs and Italian seasoning in a food processor and process until finely ground. Transfer mixture to a shallow dish.

In a separate shallow dish, whisk together milk and 2 tablespoons of the flour. Place remaining 1/2 cup of flour in a large freezer bag.

Add cheese sticks to the bag with the flour and shake to coat. Working in batches, dip the flour-coated cheese sticks into the milk mixture and then into the panko mixture. Arrange cheese, in a single layer, on prepared baking sheets. Spray the surface with cooking spray. Refrigerate 10 minutes.

Bake 8-10 minutes, until crust is golden brown and cheese is soft.

Serves 8

Nutrition Info Per Serving (serving size: 4 pieces)
Calories: 248
Total Fat: 11 grams
Saturated Fat: 7 grams
Total Carbohydrate: 17 grams
Sugars: 2 grams
Protein: 18 grams
Sodium: 451 milligrams
Cholesterol: 31 milligrams
Fiber: 1 gram

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Comments (948)

  1. What a great recipe–I love the huge reduction in calories, without sacrificing flavor. However, if you were to give cheese to my brother's mules, you would find a very different reaction–Mules don't like cheese! They do have a sweet tooth, however.

  2. I really like your recipe the most i liked the illustration of your recipe with the effect of eating this recipe. Great to visit your blog would be waiting for more good stuffs.

  3. mersho says:

    I will have to try this. We seem to feed the neighbors. This will be perfect

  4. rachel says:

    Salivating. Uhhghghghg

  5. bradygrl1 says:

    Love this! It's so much healthier to bake rather than fry. And a lot of times you get close to the same flavor!

  6. carla says:

    ok so I signed up, now how do I get a recipe into my recipe box? techno dumb, thanks

  7. Lisa says:

    I just want to print this out, how the heck do I do that!!!!! Irritated

    • Jill says:

      Push the button ctrl and the the letter P on your keyboard. Mine says it will print out 3 pages but you can just print out the first two. Or copy and paste the recipe and paste it on Word or whatever program you may have to type letters and such. Or copy and paste to your yahoo as if you were sending a message and print. Lots of options…;0)

      • robin says:

        I am trying to put this in my recipe box–yet there is no link as most recipes to add to the box any suggestions?

    • deborah says:

      Hi Lisa…what i do is highlight the recipe and right click on print preview..then you can select " as selected" and it will print from that….good luck!! great appetizer!!!

  8. lbok says:

    This looks really good and sounds easy but, really dining out 4 times a week? I can't even put food on the table 7 days a week…forget about dining out. Food is expensive and I just can't afford it . I have a full time job and make a decent wage but still struggling.

  9. Diane says:

    They look and sound sooooo good! Will make this with my daughter!

  10. Marya says:

    Just tried making this tonight, and wow it was delicious!! Can it be added as a recipe so it can be saved to the recipe box, printed, and rated?

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