Curried Pineapple Fritters: Sweet and Salty Snack Perfection

Inviting some pals over to hang out can quickly turn stressful when you realize they’re going to expect some food. Before you reach for your phone to order delivery, take a few deep breaths. Homemade eats don’t have to be difficult. With original recipes from our Everyday Appetizers series, you can pull off showstopping starters without losing your cool. 

From pancakes with bacon to chocolate-covered pretzels, sweet and salty combinations just taste right. The duo becomes even more spectacular when translated to fried food, so these pineapple fritters should be next on your list of recipes to make. Add a little bit of tangy yogurt sauce for dipping, and you’ll be in snacking heaven.

About this recipe

plate filled with curried pineapple fritters served with mint-lime yogurt

Curried pineapple fritters with mint-lime yogurt | Christine Skopec/Culture Cheat Sheet

Because cleaning up after deep frying is already enough effort, this appetizer takes some store-bought help in the form of pancake mix. It eliminates a bunch of extra measuring and keeps your shopping list nice and short. The mix also works as a blank canvas to accommodate other flavors, so the curry and pineapple really shine through. The specific brand is up to you, but skip the whole-grain varieties for this recipe because the flavor and texture won’t be quite right.

Before you get started with the actual fritters, make the dip. It’s much smarter to have the yogurt ready to go since you want to serve fritters, or any fried food, fresh from the fryer. Making the dip first also allows the flavors to meld, so just stir the ingredients together, then let the flavored yogurt hang out in the fridge.

For the batter, the method is very similar to making a regular batch of pancakes. Start with the dry ingredients, then whisk in the curry powder to let it evenly distribute. Once you add the wet ingredients, the key is to avoid overmixing. As with flapjacks, a lumpy batter is totally fine. Fold in the pineapple, and you’re ready to cook.

Frying without a designated appliance is completely doable with a sturdy pot and a deep-fry thermometer. The only caveat to this method is you really have to monitor the heat when you start cooking. The temperature will drop significantly when you first add the batter, so adjust as needed to maintain 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Letting it fall too low will lead to soggy, oil-laden fritters. Gross.

Once you’re cooking, make sure to give the fritters a flip every so often to ensure they cook all the way through. Once they’ve turned golden, remove, then hit them immediately with salt. As much as we love a nice flaky sea salt, finer grains actually work better for sticking to these fritters. The regular old table stuff works perfectly here.

Once you’re done frying, turn off the heat to your oil (very important!) before presenting your pals with their new favorite snack. Serve these with a citrusy, hoppy IPA or go for an exotic cocktail. This coconut rum and cilantro drink from The Kitchn would be quite nice.

Curried Pineapple Fritters with Mint-Lime Yogurt

close-up of a curried pineapple fritter dunked in mint-lime yogurt

Curried pineapple fritters with mint-lime yogurt | Christine Skopec/Culture Cheat Sheet

Feeling more like dessert? Dust the finished fritters with powdered sugar instead of salt and add a squeeze of honey to the yogurt. This recipes serves 4 to 6.

Ingredients:

  • 3 quarts plus 1 tablespoon corn, peanut, or vegetable oil, divided
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint
  • ½ teaspoon lime zest
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • Salt
  • 1½ cups buttermilk pancake mix
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1½ cups finely cubed fresh pineapple
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder

Directions: In a deep, heavy pot, preheat 3 quarts of oil until a deep-fry thermometer registers 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Meanwhile, combine yogurt, mint, lime zest, and lime juice in a small bowl. Season with salt and refrigerate until ready to use.

Place pineapple cubes in a mesh strainer to allow excess moisture to drip away while you make the batter. In a medium bowl, mix pancake mix with curry powder to combine. In a small bowl, whisk egg, milk, and remaining tablespoon of oil. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients, and stir, just to combine. Fold in pineapple cubes.

Working six to seven at a time, fry heaping tablespoonfuls of batter, turning occasionally, until golden and cooked through, about 3 to 4 minutes. Remove to a paper towel-lined sheet tray and immediately season with salt. Repeat with remaining batter. Serve fritters with mint-lime yogurt.

See you back here next week.

Follow Christine on Twitter @christineskopec

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