Crunchy Cheese Balls with Tasty Tomato Puree

September 11, 2019

Who can resist crunchy, deep fried cheese balls in a delicious tomato puree? The ultimate comfort food or a late nigh vegetarian snack.


If you have a deep fryer it will be faster, however, a wok or deep fry pan works well too.

Make the tomato sauce in advance and this recipe will take 15-20 minutes tops to make.

Serve with a side of  rocket salad to make it more of a meal.


The Tomato Puree

2 tbsp plant based Nuttelex for frying

1 brown onion, finely chopped

1 clove garlic, crushed

400 g chopped tomatoes (tinned)

1/2 tsp dried oregano

1 tbsp tomato paste

6 fresh basil leaves (torn)

salt and pepper to taste

The Crunchy Cheese Balls

2 eggs - beaten (or egg replacer) for dipping breadcrumbs

6-10 baby mozzarella balls in brine (fresh)

1 cup panko or crispy breadcrumbs

15 g plant based Nuttelex

veg oil for frying in wok or deep frypan


1To make the tomato puree, heat 2 tbsp Nuttelex in a saucepan, and fry the onion until soft. Next, add the tinned tomatoes, salt and pepper, oregano and tomato paste. Bring to the boil and then simmer 30-40 minutes. Then cool for 5 minutes before placing in blender with basil leaves to create a puree. Then set aside to chill in fridge. Best to make this up to 48 hours in advance if you can.

2Next, after draining cheese, crumb the mozzarella balls in bread crumbs by dipping each cheese ball in a bowl with beaten eggs then dip in a separate bowl with the bread crumbs. Repeat twice for each ball so they are all double dipped. Then place on plate and set aside in fridge.

3To cook your cheeseballs, heat the veg oil in wok or deep frypan, once hot, carefully add two balls at a time, rolling over as needed to cook each side well and cook for 4-6 minutes. Note if oil is too hot breadcrumbs will burn. Once cooked set aside in foil to keep warm and place in a low warm oven while you heat up the puree.

4Lastly, add 15g Nuttelex to the tomato puree and heat till warm on the stove top and pour into a dipping bowls and serve with your warm cheese balls garnished with torn basil leaves.