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How to Make Zeppoles from Pizza Dough

How to Make Zeppoles from Pizza Dough

Do you have leftover pizza dough lying around and wondering what to do with it? Look no further! In this comprehensive guide, we will show you how to transform that pizza dough into delectable zeppoles, a delightful Italian dessert. Zeppoles are fried dough balls that are crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside, and they are sure to be a hit at any gathering or as a special treat for yourself.


If you’ve ever had the pleasure of tasting zeppoles, you know just how addictive they can be. These little balls of dough are a true delight, and the best part is that they are incredibly easy to make. With just a few simple ingredients and some basic cooking skills, you can recreate the magic of zeppoles right in your own kitchen.

How to Make Zeppoles from Pizza Dough
How to Make Zeppoles from Pizza Dough

What are Zeppoles?

Zeppoles are a traditional Italian dessert that originated in Naples. They are often enjoyed during special occasions and festivals, but there’s no reason why you can’t enjoy them any time you want a sweet treat. Zeppoles are made by frying balls of dough until they become golden brown and crispy. They are then dusted with powdered sugar for the perfect finishing touch.


To make zeppoles from pizza dough, you will need the following ingredients:

  • Pizza dough (leftover or store-bought)
  • Vegetable oil (for frying)
  • Powdered sugar (for dusting)

That’s it! Just three simple ingredients are all you need to create these delightful treats.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Now that you have gathered your ingredients, it’s time to get cooking. Follow these step-by-step instructions to make delicious zeppoles from pizza dough:

Step 1: Preparing the Dough

  1. Take your pizza dough out of the refrigerator and let it come to room temperature. This will make it easier to work with.
  2. Lightly flour a clean surface and place the dough on it. Knead the dough gently to remove any air bubbles and shape it into a ball.

Step 2: Shaping the Zeppoles

  1. Divide the dough into small pieces, about the size of a golf ball. You can use a knife or a dough cutter to do this.
  2. Take each piece of dough and roll it into a smooth ball between the palms of your hands. Repeat this process until you have shaped all the dough into balls.
How to Make Zeppoles from Pizza Dough
How to Make Zeppoles from Pizza Dough

Step 3: Frying the Zeppoles

  1. In a deep pan or pot, heat vegetable oil over medium heat until it reaches a temperature of 350°F (175°C).
  2. Carefully drop a few dough balls into the hot oil, making sure not to overcrowd the pan. Fry them for about 3-4 minutes, or until they turn golden brown.
  3. Use a slotted spoon or tongs to remove the fried zeppoles from the oil and transfer them to a plate lined with paper towels. This will help absorb any excess oil.

Step 4: Dusting with Powdered Sugar

  1. While the zeppoles are still warm, generously dust them with powdered sugar. You can do this by placing the zeppoles in a paper bag with powdered sugar and shaking gently until they are coated.
  2. Alternatively, you can also use a fine-mesh strainer to sprinkle powdered sugar over the zeppoles.

Step 5: Serving and Enjoying

  1. Serve the zeppoles warm and enjoy them as they are or with your favorite dipping sauce. They are best eaten fresh, but they can also be stored in an airtight container for a day or two.

ALSO READ: How to Make Pizza Sauce Using Tomato Paste

Tips and Variations

  • For a twist on traditional zeppoles, try adding a pinch of cinnamon or nutmeg to the dough before shaping the balls. This will give them a warm and aromatic flavor.
  • If you prefer a sweeter coating, you can mix powdered sugar with a little cinnamon and roll the zeppoles in the mixture after frying.
  • Experiment with different dipping sauces, such as chocolate sauce, caramel sauce, or fruit preserves, to add a burst of flavor to your zeppoles.
How to Make Zeppoles from Pizza Dough
How to Make Zeppoles from Pizza Dough

Serving Suggestions

Zeppoles are incredibly versatile and can be enjoyed in various ways. Here are a few serving suggestions to inspire you:

  • Serve zeppoles with a side of whipped cream and fresh berries for an elegant dessert.
  • Pair them with a cup of coffee or hot chocolate for a delightful afternoon treat.
  • Drizzle them with chocolate sauce or caramel sauce for an extra touch of indulgence.
  • Serve them as part of a dessert platter alongside other sweet treats like cannoli or tiramisu.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: Can I use homemade pizza dough for zeppoles? A: Absolutely! Homemade pizza dough works just as well as store-bought dough for making zeppoles. Just make sure that the dough is well-kneaded and has risen properly before shaping the zeppoles.

Q: Can I freeze zeppoles? A: While zeppoles are best enjoyed fresh, you can freeze any leftover zeppoles in an airtight container for up to a month. To reheat, simply place them in a preheated oven at 350°F (175°C) for a few minutes until they are heated through.

Q: Can I make zeppoles in an air fryer? A: Yes, you can! Preheat your air fryer to 350°F (175°C) and place the shaped zeppoles in the air fryer basket. Cook for about 6-8 minutes, or until they turn golden brown and crispy. Remember to shake the basket occasionally to ensure even cooking.


Making zeppoles from pizza dough is a fun and delicious way to transform leftovers into a mouthwatering dessert. With just a few simple steps, you can create crispy, fluffy zeppoles that are sure to impress your family and friends. So, the next time you find yourself with leftover pizza dough, give this recipe a try and indulge in the irresistible taste of homemade zeppoles. Enjoy!

Remember, creativity is key when it comes to cooking, so feel free to experiment with different flavors and toppings to make these zeppoles truly your own. Happy cooking!

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