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Struffoli is a Neapolitan dessert that is traditionally prepared at Christmas and made of tiny dough balls that have been deep-fried and soaked in honey, then piled high on plates and trays. Some like to form them in the shape of Christmas trees or wreaths, always festively covered with multi-colored candy sprinkles. People who grew up with this traditional Christmas treat go out of their way to make sure there is a struffoli on the holiday table.


Recipe Summary test

45 mins
15 mins
1 hr
48 servings


Original recipe yields 48 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Combine flour, lemon zest, orange zest, baking powder, and salt together in a food processor; pulse to combine. Mix eggs and sugar together in a separate bowl; add 1/3 cup olive oil and vanilla extract and beat again. Mix together with flour mixture using hands to knead.

  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Heat frying oil in a deep saucepan over medium heat until the temperature reaches 375 degrees F (190 degrees C), about 5 minutes.

  • Transfer dough to a floured work surface; continue to knead sticky dough with floured hands. Flatten dough into a thin loaf about 10 inches long. Cut long ropes from the loaf, then slice ropes into 1/2-inch pieces and transfer to the prepared baking sheet.

  • Fry dough pieces in batches in the hot oil until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels.

  • Heat honey in a saucepan until warm and fluid, about 1 minute. Pour hot honey over struffoli and toss to coat. Sprinkle with multi-colored sprinkles.

Cook's Note:

I used cage-free organic eggs, organic olive oil, organic cane sugar, and raw honey.

Editor's Note:

We have determined the nutritional value of oil for frying based on a retention value of 10% after cooking. Amount will vary depending on cooking time and temperature, ingredient density, and specific type of oil used.

Nutrition Facts

162 calories; protein 2.5g; carbohydrates 25.1g; fat 6.7g; cholesterol 30.2mg; sodium 66.8mg. Full Nutrition