Zeppole Recipe is a classic Italian dessert of simple fried dough that is coated and tossed in sugar and served up!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Bob’s Red Mill. The opinions and text are all mine.
Believe it or not I have never heard of Zeppoles before making this.
What kind of Italian am I who hasn’t heard of zeppole?
Regardless, zeppoles are easy to make, delicious, and make for an awesome breakfast or dessert treat.
What are Zeppoles
Zeppole in its simplest form are little fried dough balls that are coated in powdered sugar, nothing more.
History says that Zeppoles originated in Italy and were created to celebrate the festival of St. Joseph, which means you may have heard the name Zeppole di San Giuseppe.
While researching zeppole it’s really hard to pinpoint exactly how they were made. Some folks believe they fried them in rendered fat or olive oil while others believed they were baked in a Napolitano style wood burning oven.
Some of the stories for zeppole indicate if they were fried, they realized it was way too expensive to do it so that didn’t become popularized until the 19th or 20th century. Not sure what to believe on this one.
With all of this being said, I do feel like I was able to recreate a very authentic zeppole recipe based on what I already know.
If this zeppole recipe is truly from the 14th century then it would absolutely have been incredibly simple to make. That means they would have most likely used a starter as opposed to a block of yeast or active yeast like we do now-a-days.
Lastly, you will find quite a few variations of zeppoles to be served up with some sort of pastry cream or jam, or even with ricotta cheese.
How to Make Zeppoles
I’ve enjoyed so much the past 6 months or so of digging into the most authentic version of a recipe there is, and this zeppole recipe is no different.
I’m taking the time to scour the internet, crack open books and talk to people to try and get to the very root of these original recipes.
When researching zeppoles, recipes were all over the place. From using eggs, to vanilla, to even baking powder, it was hard to zoom in on what these would have originally look like.
I can say though with confidence I’m pretty sure this zeppole recipe is pretty close to the original. It’s only 5 ingredients, plus the oil for frying, and it’s super easy to make. In fact the recipe reminds me a bit of this Homemade Pizza Dough Recipe.
If there’s one thing that has been consistent no matter what ethnic recipe I’m digging into, it’s that they use simple available ingredients and are typically fairly easy to make.
No matter what kind of zeppoles you are making, the flour is really important. I always find Bob’s Red Mill All Purpose Flour to be the perfect all around flour, whether I’m making a delicate cake or a rustic bread there is plenty of protein in it.
Start by mixing together the water and yeast until a little raft is formed and then mix in the flour and salt and knead it together.
From there you let the dough rest until doubled in size and then scoop a bit out at a time and fry it up. Coat it in sugar and boom, you’ve got a tasty zeppole recipe that your friends and family are going to love.
- 380 g 13 ½ ounces room temp water
- 13 g 1/2 ounce active yeast
- 650 g 23 ounces flour
- 16 g 1/2 ounce salt
- oil for cooking
- powdered sugar for coating
- Add the water to a stand mixer with the hook attachment and then whisk in the yeast until combined. Let stand for 8-10 minutes.
- Next, turn the mixer on low and add in the flour and mix until combined. Add in the salt.
- Knead the dough on medium-low speed for 10 minutes.
- Cover and let stand for 60 minutes or until doubled in size.
- Heat up the oil until it reaches 375°.
- Using a small ice cream scoop or 2 tablespoons scoop some of the dough out and add it to the hot oil and cook until golden brown and cooked through out, about 5-6 minutes. Be sure to turn then often so that they brown on all sides. Repeat until all the dough has been used and only cook 4-6 at a time in the pot so that they do not become over crowded.
- Drain the zeppole on a paper towel and generously sprinkle on powdered sugar and serve.