Fried Squash Blossoms Stuffed with Ricotta

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Crispy fried squash blossoms filled with creamy herb and lemon ricotta cheese. Served with a fresh sweet Heirloom tomato sauce. This simple and stunning appetizer will leave your guests asking for more!

Fried Squash Blossoms Stuffed with Ricotta

The summer season yields not only delicious summer squash but mother nature produces wonderful bright orange edible blossoms. You can typically find these eye-catching blooms at your local farmer’s market.

Squash blossoms flowers are sold either attached to the squash or separated. I love squash, so seeing the mini-sized vegetables with flowers still connected looked even more delicious, and I was able to get the best of both worlds!

squash blossoms on a cutting board

The tender and delicate squash blossoms require a little TLC, be careful not to rip the petals off as you gently remove the pistol from the center of the flower. You can fill the blossom with any of your favorite ingredients such as fresh mozzarella, goat cheese, mushrooms, shrimp, fresh herbs, the combinations are endless!

plate of squash blossoms with dipping sauce

To create the crispy coating

I decided to experiment with two different types of batter:

  • A combination of all-purpose and cake flour: The protein content in the cake flour is lower, so this helps provide a lighter coating when combined with regular flour as less gluten formation occurs. This layer was still crunchy, yet thicker but not as crispy. This type of coating would work better with protein like fish or more hearty frying ingredients, however, if you like a thicker texture, it’s a great option.
  • Gluten-free flour: I use a flour blend combination of cornstarch, white rice flour, brown rice flour, milk powder, tapioca flour, potato starch, and xanthan gum. These ingredients do not contain gluten, so the protein bonding does not occur as intensely, resulting in a weaker batter. When using the gluten-free flour, the coating was delightfully much lighter and crispier than the regular flour alternative. The texture reminded me much more of a Japanese tempura coating which was perfect for the delicate squash blossoms.

Both coatings gave the crispiness and golden brown color I was hoping for. It’s just a matter of personal preference if you enjoy something lighter or a little denser. I have included both options in the recipe, so if you feel adventurous, try them both!

Dipping a fried squash blossom into a bowl of tomato sauce

To make the savory fried squash blossoms even more irresistible, I made a sweet and delicate dipping sauce. To my delight, heirloom tomatoes are also in season, so I made a pure herb tomato sauce, the perfect complement to the crispy blossoms.

Things to know about deep frying

Using a liquid like soda or beer to incorporate into the batter helps to lighten the coating. The bubbles (carbon dioxide) become integrated into the mixture, resulting in a light and crispy exterior! When deep frying food, you want to use vegetable oil like soybean, peanut and canola oil that have high smoke points (when the oil begins to break down). To achieve the perfect golden brown color, temperatures between 325°F and 400°F are used for deep frying; 375°F is used for the fried squash blossom recipe. These high temperatures allow for quick cooking, surface browning, and yummy aromas to be developed.

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Fried Squash Blossoms Stuffed with Ricotta

Crispy fried squash blossoms filled with creamy herb and lemon ricotta cheese. Served with a fresh sweet Heirloom tomato sauce.
Pin Print Review
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time35 mins
Servings 4 servings
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Italian

Ingredients

Fried Squash Blossoms

  • 16 squash blossoms, pistil, carefully removed from the center
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup cake flour, not self-rising
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, coarse
  • 1 cup sparkling water, Pellegrino
  • vegetable oil, for frying

Ricotta Filling

  • 1 cup ricotta, whole-milk
  • 1 tablespoon basil, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon Italian parsley, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon mint, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon chives, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon thyme, chopped (5 sprigs thyme)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon peel, freshly grated
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, add more to taste
  • black pepper, to taste

Heirloom Tomato Sauce

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus 2 tablespoons
  • ¼ cup onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, chopped
  • pinch chili flakes
  • 2 cups heirloom tomatoes, seeded, and diced (any variety can be substituted)
  • kosher salt, to taste
  • black pepper, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 4 sprigs thyme, removed and chopped
  • 4 basil leaves, chiffonade

Instructions 

Batter

  • In a medium bowl, sift together the dry ingredients; whisk together both flours, baking powder, 1 teaspoon salt.
  • Gradually add the sparkling water, adding more as necessary so that batter is a thin consistency. The batter should coat the back of a spoon, but some excess should runoff. Allow it to rest in the refrigerator at least 30 minutes before use.

Heirloom Tomato Sauce

  • Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, add 3 tablespoons of the olive oil and heat.
  • Add the onion, garlic, and chili flakes and cook for 1 minute. Insert the tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Add the sugar and stir to combine. Lower the heat and cook until the tomatoes start to disintegrate, and the mixture is of a sauce-like consistency, about 15 minutes.
  • Add the thyme, basil, and remaining olive oil (1-2 tablespoons) and mix well. Allow it to cool to room temperature, reserve.

Ricotta Filling

  • While the batter is chilling, prepare the squash blossoms.
  • Carefully separate the flower petals without breaking them and remove the pistil in the center. Combine the cheese, basil, parsley, mint, chives, thyme, lemon peel, olive oil, salt, and pepper until smooth.
  • Place mixture in a piping bag or small plastic bag and cut a small hole on the tip. Carefully add about 1-2 teaspoons of the cheese mixture to each blossom and twist the top of the flower tight.

Frying the Squash Blossoms

  • Fill a deep pot 2-inches high with vegetable oil. Heat over medium-high heat until it reaches 375°F on a thermometer.
  • Hold the squash blossoms by the stem. Dip each into the batter, making sure to coat thoroughly. Let any excess batter drip off. Place the blossom in the oil and fry until golden brown and crispy, about 1 to 2 minutes, often turning to brown evenly. Transfer to a paper towel-lined tray. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Serve and enjoy the fried blossoms immediately and serve with Heirloom tomato sauce.

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Nutrition Facts
Fried Squash Blossoms Stuffed with Ricotta
Amount Per Serving
Calories 485 Calories from Fat 198
% Daily Value*
Fat 22g34%
Saturated Fat 7g35%
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 10g
Cholesterol 24mg8%
Sodium 1567mg65%
Potassium 453mg13%
Carbohydrates 60g20%
Fiber 4g16%
Sugar 9g10%
Protein 14g28%
Vitamin A 2600IU52%
Vitamin C 32.2mg39%
Calcium 440mg44%
Iron 4mg22%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Jessica Gavin

I'm a culinary school graduate, cookbook author, and a mom who loves croissants! My passion is creating recipes and sharing the science behind cooking to help you gain confidence in the kitchen.

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Reader Interactions

7 Comments Leave a comment or review

    • Jessica Gavin says

      Thanks Patrice! No need to hire me, I’ll come over and make them if you let me have a taste after 🙂 I love how you have a green thumb!

  1. Andy says

    That looks good Rabbit! We have squash blossoms growing now I will try this recipe but surely mess it up.

    Your Agent

    • Jessica Gavin says

      Thanks Andy! I’ll come over and help you! I want to try these delicious veggies you have growing in your garden!

  2. Kate Kaiser says

    I don’t see the gluten free option in the recipe. What am I missing? I’d like to try ti but don’t know how much of what to add.
    I want to bake these and wonder if this batter will work.

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