Air Fryer Cheese Sticks are a dream come true! These homemade mozzarella cheese sticks are crispy on the outside, with perfectly melted cheesy goodness on the inside.
Learn how to make these mozzarella cheese sticks without losing any cheese during the cooking process and there is NO need to freeze these sticks either!
WHY YOU WILL LOVE THESE GOOEY MOZZARELLA STICKS
- Unlike store-bought mozzarella sticks, the cheese does not ooze out of the breading.
- There is no grease smell or mess when you are done making these little gems.
- They are way more healthy than a deep fried appetizer.
- This cheesy appetizer is a perfect game-day snack and only takes 5 minutes to cook.
- With the added pepperoni, these sticks taste like air fryer pizza rolls.
THE SECRET TO KEEPING THE CHEESE INSIDE
Wait for it.... wonton wrappers! Yes, yes, yes! It works every time!
Many mozzarella cheese stick recipes recommend you double coat the cheese with bread crumbs or freeze the cheese stick for hours before cooking. Totally not necessary with my recipe for Air Fryer Cheese Sticks.
Start with a wonton wrapper, top it with two pepperoni pieces, a stick of mozzarella cheese, wrap it all up tight, and coat it in seasoned bread crumbs. It's that easy and there is NO freezing necessary! (Pepperoni is optional, and WAY worth adding.)
HOW DOES AN AIR FRYER WORK?
I have to admit, I wasn't so sure about purchasing an air fryer. First, it's another piece of equipment. Did I really need it? Would it be that much better? The answer is yes!
What's so great about the air fryer is there is no actual frying happening. I don't know about you, but I wouldn't say I like the leftover smell that lingers from frying foods in my kitchen. It's just not worth the mess and odor.
An air fryer cooks the food by blowing hot air around the food, giving a convection effect that browns the food making it crispy just like it came out of a hot oil bath. No grease equals a healthier version of mozzarella sticks you won't get in a restaurant.
- Mozzarella String Cheese - You can use pre-cut mozzarella string cheese or you can cut pieces from a block. You'll love this melty cheese.
- Wonton Wrappers - Use egg roll wrappers if you can't find the wonton style, but you will need to cut them to size.
- Egg - The beaten egg works to insure that the wonton stays closed, keeping the cheese inside during the cooking process.
- Seasoned Breadcrumbs (Italian Breadcrumbs) - Seasoned is basically the same as regular breadcrumbs, but with Italian seasonings added to them.
- Panko Breadcrumbs - A mix of Panko breadcrumbs and seasoned breadcrumbs gives the sticks a great crunchy texture.
- Italian Seasoning
- Garlic Powder
HOW TO MAKE HOMEMADE AIR FRYER MOZZARELLA STICKS
STEP 1: Remove each mozzarella cheese stick from the wrapper and cut each into three equal pieces.
STEP 2: Add ½ cup Panko bread crumbs, ¼ cup seasoned bread crumbs, 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, and ½ teaspoon garlic powder in a mall bowl. Mix until well combined.
STEP 3: In a second bowl beat 1 large egg and 1 tablespoon water.
STEP 4: Lay out 6 wonton wrappers on a clean surface. Top each with two pieces of pepperoni and one piece of mozzarella cheese.
STEP 5: Brush the edges of each wonton with the egg wash.
STEP 6: Take on corner of the wonton and wrap around the cheese. Fold corners and continue to roll until the wonton wrapper is sealed.
STEP 7: Working with one cheese stick at a time, dip into the egg mixture, then into the panko mixture. Press breadcrumbs firmly onto each wonton, making certain all areas are covered. Continue the process until all 18 are rolled and coated.
STEP 8: For best results, spray the air fryer basket with cooking spray. This will insure that they don't stick to the air fryer and it will help the sticks to brown and become crispy.
STEP 9: Working in batches, add 6-9 sticks to the air fryer in a single layer so that they are not touching. Spray each stick with cooking spray. (Cover cooked sticks with aluminum foil while you air fry all of the sticks.)
STEP 10: Set the air fryer to 400 degrees for 5 minutes. Halfway through the cooking process, flip the sticks. There is no need to preheat the air fryer, but all air fryers are different, so cook time may vary. Cook until crispy and golden brown.
STEP 11: Serve immediately with warm marinara sauce, BBQ sauce, ranch or your favorite dipping sauce.
OPTIONAL: Sprinkle cooked sticks with parmesan cheese.
MORE MEMORABLE AIR FRYER RECIPES
Air Fryer Cheese Sticks (With Pepperoni)
- Remove mozzarella cheese sticks from the wrapper and cut each into three equal pieces.
- Add ½ c Panko bread crumbs, ¼ c seasoned bread crumbs, 1 tsp Italian seasoning, and ½ tsp garlic powder in a shallow bowl. Mix until well combined.
- Beat 1 egg and 1 tbsp water in a small bowl.
- Lay out 6 wonton wrappers on a clean surface. Top each with two pieces of pepperoni and one stick of mozzarella cheese.
- Brush the edges of each wonton with the egg mixture.
- Take on corner of the wonton and wrap around the cheese. Fold each side up onto the top of the first corner and continue to roll until the wonton wrapper is sealed.
- Working with one cheese stick at a time, dip into the egg mixture, then into the bread crumb mixture. Press bread crumbs firmly onto each wonton making certain all areas are covered. Place on a plate.
- Continue the process until all 18 are rolled and coated.
- Spray the basket of the air fryer with cooking spray. This will insure that they don't stick to the air fryer.
- Working in batches add 6-9 sticks to the air fryer so that they are not touching. Spray each stick with cooking spray.
- Set the air fryer to 400 degrees for 5 minutes, until crispy and brown. Turn the sticks half way through cooking process.
- Serve warm with your favorite dipping sauces.
- Pepperoni is optional.
- Marinara or Ranch is great for dipping.
- They will hold in a 200 degree oven as you make sticks in batches.