Fried Zucchini Flowers are squash blossoms covered in batter and deep fried. It is a typical Mediterranean dish in Italy called Fiori di Zucca Fritti and Beignets de Fleurs de Courgette in France. This recipe has many versions: mild or elaborate batter, with or without fillings. I use a simple batter with saffron to make a crispy crust and fill the zucchini flowers with mozzarella and ham for a gooey, stringy center.
- What are zucchini flowers or squash blossoms?
- Which flower to use
- Where to find them
- How to clean them
- A crunchy but light batter
- How to make the saffron batter
- The fillings
- Making the fried zucchini flowers
- Top tips
- More zucchini flowers recipes
- More recipes with edible flowers
- 📋Fried Zucchini Flowers Recipe
This zucchini flower recipe is a classic Italian street food in many towns and regions, Naple, Liguria, and Marche.
They are served in paper cones with a selection of fried food.
What are zucchini flowers or squash blossoms?
Fresh zucchini flowers are the yellow edible flowers in the zucchini or any squash plant.
They taste sweet, and when opened, they are shaped like bells.
They are enclosed little bags with no gaps between the petals, the perfect shape for filling.
Unfortunately, they are easily perishable, so they should be used the same day they are bought or picked.
Which flower to use
There are two types of flowers, the male blossoms, the flowers that pollinate, and the female blossoms, which are the flowers that yield the zucchini.
- Female flowers are attached to the zucchini and have a large stem inside.
- Male flowers have a small stem with more room to insert the filling.
You can use either flower, but I prefer the male ones for frying.
It is much better if you pick fresh flowers directly from the plant.
Where to find them
Zucchini flowers are a common ingredient in Mediterranean countries during the summer when they are in season.
During this time of year, you can find them in most grocery stores or local farmer's markets, but they can be expensive, and you must use them the same day.
That is why I like to grow my own zucchini plants in my vegetable garden.
I can pick them up when I want to prepare them.
The delicate flowers are still open early in the morning, and I can check that no insects are inside.
After only a few hours, the flowers will close.
How to clean them
Zucchini flowers are easy to clean as the entire flower is edible:
- Cut the flower sepals (the small green mini leaves that cover the base of the petals)
- Open the flower to make sure there are no insects inside
- Wash the flowers with running water
- Lay them upside down in a colander to drain out any water from inside the flower
A crunchy but light batter
There are many versions of fried zucchini flowers where flowers are coated with different types of batter.
I have tasted batters made with eggs, herbs, and even breadcrumbs.
Personally, I prefer to keep it simple as the flowers have a delicate flavour that could be overwhelmed by stronger ingredients.
I use a simple flour mixture with equal sparkling water and flour and 1 tablespoon of semolina flour to add crunch.
Besides salt, I add saffron. As saffron is pollen, it enhances its flowery flavor.
- Sparkling water
- Semolina flour
Quantities are in the recipe card below.
How to make the saffron batter
- In a large bowl, mix all the dry ingredients: the 2 flours, a pinch of salt, and the saffron
- Gradually add the water
- Mix until you have a smooth batter
Use mild but not watery cheese, such as mozzarella cubes, for cooking.
Fresh watery mozzarella cheese will leak water into the frying oil, producing dangerous sparks.
You can also add a small piece of cooked ham or a slice of boiled egg.
For more fillings, I also recommend ricotta cheese and parmesan, provola, caciocavallo or salami.
Vegetable oil is better for deep frying as it has a higher smoke point than olive oil.
I have a deep fryer, as when I serve fried appetizers at a dinner party, it is more practical to fry a large quantity of food.
Use a large pot with enough oil if you don't have a deep fryer.
Making the fried zucchini flowers
- Once the flowers are dry, add the fillings inside the flower
- Close the tips of the petals
- Dip the flower in the batter
- Deep fry the flowers in hot oil
- Turn them to cook evenly; it takes only a couple of minutes
- Once they turn golden brown, lay them over a kitchen paper towel to absorb the excess oil
- Serve immediately while they are warm and crispy
- Use fresh flowers, best if picked that same morning
- Use the male flower, as it has a smaller stem
- When you make the batter, mix the flour with the water gradually so you don't create small lumps
- Serve these zucchini flower fritters immediately
More zucchini flowers recipes
As I always plant zucchini in my garden, in the Summer, I have plenty of zucchini flowers.
They are very easy to use and add a nice sweet flavor.
- Italian zucchini frittata with flowers
- Zucchini mushroom quiche
- Shrimp zucchini pasta
- Ricotta zucchini pasta
More recipes with edible flowers
If you are interested in edible flower recipes, I have many here.
You can find sweet as well as savory recipes.
Make sure you pick flowers that are safe to eat.
Even edible, they should not have been treated with chemicals.
- Roast Pumpkin Soup With Edible Flowers Capucines
- Fresh Tomato Soup Salmorejo With Edible Flowers Tulbaghia
- Chayote Squash Mousse with Mussels With Edible Flowers Begonia
- Seafood Chowder Recipe Served In A Bread Bowl With Edible Flowers Agastache
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📋Fried Zucchini Flowers Recipe
Prepare the flowers and the fillings
- Wash the flowers making sure there are no insects inside. Cut the sepal but leave the pedicel of male flowers. Let them drain upside down.10 zucchini flowers
- Prepare the filling by cutting the mozzarella into cubesmozzarella and ham
- Once they are dry, add the fillings inside the flower
- In the meantime heat the oil for frying at medium heatvegetable oil for frying
Make the batter
- In a bowl mix the 2 flours with the saffron1 cup flour, 1 tablespoon semolina flour, 2 sachets saffron
- Then add water and salt and whisk until combined1 cup fresh water
Frying the flowers
- Dip the flowers in the mix closing the top
- Making sure they are all coated with the batter
- Deep fry the flowers
- Turn them to cook evenly
- Once cooked, lay them over a paper towel to absorb the excess oil
- Serve immediately so they will be warm and crispy
- Use fresh flowers, best if picked that same morning
- Use the male flower as it has a smaller stem
- When you make the batter, mix the flour with the water gradually so you don't create flour lumps
- Serve immediately