These Fried Halloumi Bites are little pops full of flavor! They have a hot honey and lemony marinade and taste like a mix of sweet, salty, and spicy in every bite.
The perfect combo that will make your taste buds dance!
Fried Halloumi cheese can be served in so many ways and is always one to impress!
I love adding it to a salad, a sandwich or wrap, burgers, or even perfect on its own as an appetizer or side dish too. Here I've served these fried halloumi bites over an arugula salad with toothpicks which makes them so fun to serve as an appetizer for a party!
You only need 15 minutes and a handful of ingredients to make this recipe and it's one to impress!
Halloumi cheese on its own can be a little salty. However, when paired with spicy hot honey and lemon, the flavors all work so well together and it balances out the saltiness.
Unlike other cheeses such as mozzarella or cheddar, halloumi doesn't melt when it's heated so it's great to marinade and either grill or pan fry.
Table of Contents
What is Halloumi?
Halloumi is a cheese from Cyprus which is firm and brined, traditionally made from a mixture of goat and sheep milk.
It has a super strong salty flavor from the brine. Once cooked, it has a squidgy texture. Halloumi also has a high melting point making it perfect for pan frying and grilling.
It's chewy and squeaky but in the best way!
Ingredients to make Fried Halloumi Bites
- Halloumi cheese is of course the star! It's a cheese from Cyprus that's super salty and has a squeaky chewy texture, but in the best way!
You can usually find it in most grocery stores and supermarkets in the refrigerator section close to the feta cheese. Otherwise, check out your local Mediterranean grocer or supermarket
- Honey compliments halloumi cheese so well as the sweetness balances out the saltiness. You can also use hot honey, but here I've used regular honey with the addition of red pepper flakes.
- Red pepper flakes (chili flakes) are used to make the marinade a little spicy. You can use fresh chilies too or chili powder if you can't find dried red pepper flakes but the quantities will differ. If you're using spicy honey, you can reduce the amount of red pepper flakes used
- Lemon juice is added to the halloumi marinade to balance the flavors. Fresh lemons are always best but of course, you can use bottled lemon juice too
- Extra virgin olive oil is always my preferred oil to use, especially for a Mediterranean dish
- Arugula is used for a base salad and also for garnish
How to make Fried Halloumi Bites
This delicious appetizer will impress and takes little to no time to make. A simple marinade brings this recipe altogether and is made in a few steps.
- Make the marinade by combining olive oil, honey, chili and lemon juice in a small bowl. Give it a good stir
- Cut halloumi into cubes and pat dry with a paper towel
- Place halloumi pieces in a container or bowl and pour over the marinade. Allow marinating in the fridge for a minimum of 30 minutes or overnight
- Pan fry halloumi on medium-high heat. After a few minutes, flip and pour over spoons of the leftover marinade and allow to sizzle for a minute. Serve over some dressed arugula and enjoy!
Tips & Tricks
- Don't slice the halloumi cheese too small. You want them approximately 1.5 cm cubes. You can also make halloumi fries by slicing them into thick strips
- Always pat dry the halloumi with a paper towel to remove the excess water
- No need to add salt as the cheese is salty enough
- Allow to marinade for at least 30 minutes or overnight. If you’re running short of time, don't stress as it's still tasty without this step
More Appetizer Recipes
- Bread Dipping Oil
- No Knead Focaccia
- Upside Down Puff Pastries
- Whipped Feta Dip
- Mushroom Tart
- Persian Eggplant Dip
I love seeing your creations and remakes, so be sure to rate the recipe, comment and share your Fried Halloumi Bites photo on Instagram so I can share the love!
Fried Halloumi Bites
- 500 g halloumi cheese
- 4 tablespoon honey
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes (or more or less depending how spicy you like it)
- 1 small lemon
- 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- Arugula salad for serving
- Slice the halloumi into approximately 1.5 cm cubes and pat dry with a paper towel.
- Make the halloumi marinade by combining the olive oil, 4 tablespoon honey , red pepper flakes and lemon juice in a cup or small bowl. Stir together well
- Place halloumi in an airtight container or bowl and pour the marinade. Allow to marinate for 30 minutes or even overnight in the fridge
- Heat up olive oil in a non-stick pan or skillet on medium high heat. Add a light drizzle of olive oil then add the halloumi cheese in a single layer and pan-fry for a few minutes
- When you can see the halloumi cheese browning up on the sides, flip them around. Pour over spoons of the leftover remaining sauce on the cheese and allow to sizzle for a minute until the cheese is golden brown on both sides
- Serve over an arugula salad or greek salad with any leftovers of the marinade and enjoy!!