If you are already drooling just by seeing the title and top photo, then you can blame my mom for sharing one of the most tempting cannoli recipes on her Facebook page! When I first saw it myself I thought, “I wonder how many amazing cannoli recipes are out there that I could share with our readers!” So thanks mama, now I just need to work out to a few more Jillian Michaels DVDs before I try some of these! Check out these dream worthy recipes and share with us your favorite cannoli recipes that make a bad day so much better...
1. Cannoli Dip
This is the cannoli recipe that started it all. I mean really, what could be better than cannoli dip?! This would be a great appetizer for a bridal shower, birthday party, or even a Summer barbecue. I love the idea of using it as a fruit dip. Do you need a way to get your kids to eat more fruit? Well, I bet they wouldn’t say no to this!
15 oz Ricotta cheese, strained*
8 oz Mascarpone cheese
2/3 cup powdered sugar, plus more for dusting if desired
1 cup heavy cream**
1/2 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips (chopped pistachios would also be good)
In a mixing bowl using a spatula, blend together Ricotta and Mascarpone cheese, while pressing mixture along bottom of bowl to smooth mixture. Fold in powdered sugar. In a separate mixing bowl, whip heavy cream until stiff peaks form. Add half of whipped cream to Ricotta mixture and fold until combined, then add remaining half and fold until combined. Fold in chocolate chips, reserving 1 - 2 Tbsp to garnish. Serve topped with remaining chocolate chips, dusted lightly with powdered sugar if desired and serve with graham crackers, strawberries, cannoli chips or fried flour tortilla chips dusted lightly with cinnamon.
*To strain I simply lay the ricotta over several layers of paper towels, then wrap and squeeze to remove excess moisture. You want to remove enough moisture that the Ricotta should hold it's shape pretty well so you may want to do this step twice.
**If you don't want the dip fluffy you can reduce the amount of heavy cream or even omit it (which will give it a texture closer to a traditional cannoli filling). If you do omit it you may want to reduce the powdered sugar by a few Tbsp.
2. Chocolate Cannoli Doughnuts
As if you didn’t think it could get better than cannoli dip, I present to you chocolate cannoli doughnuts! Wow, I think I just gained 20 lbs by looking at this delectable treat! If I made these -- okay, if I attempted to make these at home, I’m pretty certain my husband and kids would expect amazing desserts like this one on a weekly basis. So tell me, do you make cookies, cakes, and other sweets for an every day after dinner treat or only for special occasions?
For the dough:
1-½ teaspoon Active Dry Yeast
1 teaspoon Sugar
¼ cups Warm Water
2-½ cups All-purpose Flour
½ teaspoons Salt
¼ cups Sugar
2 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter, melted
1 whole Large Egg
¾ cups Milk, Warmed, Plus Extra For Brushing
¼ cups Powdered Sugar, For Dusting
For the filling:
1 cup Ricotta Cheese
2 Tablespoons Cocoa Powder
3 Tablespoons Sugar
½ teaspoons Vanilla Extract
In a small measuring cup, mix together the yeast, 1 teaspoon sugar and 1/4 cup warm water. Set it aside until bubbly, about 5-8 minutes.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, salt and 1/4 cup sugar. Pour in the yeast mixture, melted butter, egg and the milk, and stir until everything comes together and a dough-like mixture forms. This will take about 3-5 minutes. The dough will be sticky, and more similar to thick batter than bread dough. That’s OK.
Cover the bowl with a damp kitchen towel and let the dough rise until it doubles its size, about 1-1 ½ hours. Line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper; set aside.
Make sure your work surface is well floured, then scrape the dough out of the bowl and let it spread across the surface. Carefully pat the dough out into a large rectangle about ¾” thick. Be very careful not to handle to dough too roughly, or you will deflate the dough and make chewier, less fluffy doughnuts. Flour a biscuit cutter and cut rounds out of the dough. Use a spatula to help you transfer the rounds onto the prepared baking tray. Re-spread and cut the dough as necessary so you can use it up. Cover the cut outs with a kitchen towel and let it rest for at least 30 minutes, and up to 1 hour.
During this time, make the filling. Combine all filling ingredients in a medium bowl and stir until well incorporated. Place in the refrigerator until ready to use.
Preheat oven to 375 F. Brush the top of the donuts with a bit of milk and bake until lightly brown, 12-15 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool completely.
Prepare a piping bag fitted with a long round cake decorating tip. Make a small incision into each donut with a paring knife, and feel free to cut a little deeper to create a pocket for the filling. Place the chocolate ricotta spread into the piping bag (or Ziploc bag with one corner snipped off) and pipe it into the donuts. Lightly dust with some powder sugar before serving, and enjoy!
3. Cannoli Ice Cream
Now I didn’t say whether these recipes were healthy or not, I just said they were dream worthy! In other words, don’t make all of these in one week, that wouldn’t be a good idea! But, what would be a great idea for a hot Summer day is this cannoli ice cream recipe, which sounds really easy to make too.
1 1/2 c milk (it can be reduced fat)
1 1/2 c ricotta (about 12 oz, it can be part skim)
3/4 c packed light brown sugar
3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
3/4 tsp fresh lemon juice
1/8 tsp orange zest scant
3/4 c mini chocolate chips
Combine milk, ricotta and brown sugar in the bowl of a food processor. Blend well, then transfer to a mixing bowl.
Whisk in cinnamon, lemon juice and orange zest. Add to an ice cream maker and follow manufacturer’s instructions.
Allow ricotta ice cream to firm up—but not get too hard—in the freezer before folding in chocolate chips. Continue to freeze until desired consistency or to store.
4. Cannoli Cupcakes
If you are in need of an “I’m sorry you’re having a bad day” cupcake for a friend, look no further than this mouthwatering cannoli cupcake recipe! I’m pretty sure no other dessert could beat out a cupcake that has a cannoli filling, am I wrong? This tasty recipe would really make anyone's day better, so if your friend or family member is just having one of those days, why not whip some of these up to take over to them?
2 cup cake flour
1 ¼ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. cinnamon
½ tsp. salt
1 ½ cup sugar
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
4 large eggs
1 cup whole milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
cannoli filling (recipe follows)
mascarpone buttercream (recipe follows)
cannoli shells (optional)
Preheat oven to 325°F. Line 16-18 muffin pans with paper liners; set aside. Whisk flours, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt in a bowl; set aside. Cream butter and sugar, mixing until just light and fluffy. Add eggs 1 at a time until combined, scraping down the bowl after each addition. Add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of milk and vanilla to batter until completely mixed scraping down the bowl as you mix. Scoop batter into baking cups filling about 2/3 full. Bake until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 17 to 20 minutes.
1 cup whole milk ricotta cheese (drained in a fine-mesh strainer for 2 hours to remove excess liquid)
1 cup mascarpone cheese
½ cup confectioners sugar
½ tsp. vanilla
½ tsp. cinnamon
pinch of salt
****In a large bowl, mix filling ingredients using a wooden spoon. Cover and refrigerate until ready to fill cupcakes, at least 2 hours. When ready to fill cupcakes, transfer the cannoli filling into a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip. Push the tip gently into the bottom of a cupcake and squeeze in the filling until the cupcake plumps. Continue with the remaining cupcakes. Top with mascarpone buttercream, pistachios, and cannoli shell pieces. Keep cupcakes refrigerated until ready to serve. Let stand 20-30 minutes before serving.
Mascarpone Buttercream Frosting:
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
16 oz. Mascarpone cheese, room temperature
4-5 cups confectioners sugar
****Using an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and Mascarpone until light and creamy. Add sugar and continue beating until smooth.
5. Cannoli Stuffed French Toast
How about a little surprise French toast recipe for your significant other’s birthday? I would smother my husband with kisses if I woke up to this amazing cannoli stuffed french toast recipe on my birthday, or any day for that matter! Hint, hint! I’m sure if I asked, he would probably make this for me, he’s pretty amazing when it comes to cooking up something special for breakfast. Lucky lady I am!
1 cup ricotta cheese
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 large eggs
1/4 cup heavy cream (or milk)
4 slices French bread
2 tablespoons butter
Powdered sugar-for serving
In a small bowl, combine the ricotta cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Stir in the mini chocolate chips. Set aside.
In a shallow bowl or pie plate, whisk the eggs and heavy cream together. Spread 2 slices of the bread with the ricotta mixture, about 1/2 cup per slice. Place the other slices of bread on top and gently press them together. Carefully dip both sides of each sandwich into the egg mixture until well coated.
In a large skillet, melt the butter. Add the French toast sandwiches and cook until golden, about 4 minutes per side. Cut the sandwiches in half on the diagonal and transfer to plates. Dust with confectioners' sugar and serve immediately.
6. Cannoli Sandwich Cookie
Don’t just make another whoopie pie filling for your sandwich cookie, whip up something extra special like this cannoli filling recipe. Pistachios seem to be a trend in a few of these recipes. Not sure why the combination is so popular, but I’m interested in learning more about how the mix became about.
1 c butter, softened
3/4 c sugar
1/4 c brown sugar, packed
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/4 c flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp orange zest
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 c finely chopped pistachios
cannoli filling, recipe follows
melted chocolate, recipe follows
3/4 c whole milk ricotta
8 oz. mascarpone cheese
1/3 c powdered sugar
3/4 tsp vanilla
Beat butter at medium speed until creamy. Gradually add sugar and brown sugar, beating well. Add egg and vanilla, beat till combined.
Combine flour, baking powder, zest, and cinnamon. Add to butter mixture. Beat at medium speed. Stir in pistachios.
Shape dough into 2 - 6 inch logs. Wrap with wax paper and freeze until firm. Slice frozen dough into 1/8 inch thick rounds. Place rounds on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet.
Bake at 350 degrees F for 10-12 minutes, or until lightly browned at edges. Cool 1 minute on pan. Cool completely on wire rack.
Fill with cannoli filling. Assemble sandwiches and drizzle with melted chocolate. Cool in refrigerator until chocolate has hardened.
Cannoli Filling Directions:
adapted from RecipeGirl
Mix ingredients together. Fill a pastry bag or Ziploc bag with filling. Chill until ready to use. To fill sandwiches, pipe filling on the underside of one cookie. Top cookie with another.
7. Cannoli Cheesecake
Let’s finish out the list strong to keep you dreaming all night long about this recipe. Really, what could be better than cannoli cheesecake?! At first I thought cannoli cupcakes were the most amazing dessert I've ever seen, but I bet this comes pretty close in taste! It is cheesecake after all.
1 1/4 crushed cannoli shells (6 large or 12 mini shells)
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 cup melted butter
3 packages (8-ounces each) cream cheese, softened at room temperature
1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup heavy cream
15 ounce container ricotta cheese
Grated zest of one large orange
4 Eggland's Best eggs (large), lightly beaten
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup semi-sweet mini chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan with aluminum foil and spray lightly with non-stick cooking spray.
Combine 1 cup of the crushed cannoli shells, cocoa powder, sugar, and melted butter. Spread evenly in the bottom of the prepared pan and set aside.
Using an electric hand mixer or a stand mixer beat cream cheese, sugar, heavy cream in a large bowl until well mixed. Add eggs, orange zest, vanilla extract and ricotta, and beat again until well mixed, approximately 2 minutes. Fold in mini chocolate chips.
Pour batter into prepared pan and spread evenly over crust. Bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until filling is set and the top is golden brown. Cool to room temperature and refrigerate to chill at least 2 hours before serving.
Before serving, remove sides of pan and peel aluminum foil from the bottom. Garnish with the remaining 1/4 cup of crushed cannoli shells, and additional mini chocolate chips and powdered sugar if desired."
Have you made any of these incredible cannoli recipes before? My favorites are the cannoli cupcake and the cheesecake, how about you? Please share any cannoli recipes I may have missed, I would love to learn if there are even more amazing recipes to try with cannoli filling!