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loukoumades fried greek donut balls

Loukoumades Greek Donuts (Zalabia)

  • Author: Samara
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: 50 1x
  • Diet: Vegetarian


Loukoumades are Greek donuts, known as zalabia in Egypt. They are crispy fried balls of dough that are drizzled with aromatic sugar simple syrup, or honey. 


Units Scale

Loukoumades Batter

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups warm water
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp powdered milk
  • 2 tsp instant yeast
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Oil for frying


  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1 tbsp orange blossom water
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice


  1. Start by mixing the dry ingredients, then add the warm water and mix until there are no lumps. Cover with plastic wrap and let the batter rest for an hour. 
  2. Prepare the simple syrup by mixing all the sugar and water in a pot, bring to a boil, and cook while mixing frequently until it thickens. Add the lemon juice and orange blossom water. Set aside to cool. 
  3. After an hour, heat the oil on the stove. To check if it's hot enough, drop some batter in; if it bubbles, then the oil is ready. If not, wait a little bit for it to get hotter. 
  4. Using 2 teaspoons, dip one spoon in a bowl of water and scoop up some dough. Use the other spoon to scrape the dough into the oil. Repeat until you have a couple of dough balls frying in the oil.
  5. Use a frying spatula or slotted spoon to move them around in the oil, making sure they evenly fry on all sides. Once they're golden-brown, take them out of the oil and place them in a colander or on a plate lined with paper towels. Repeat until all of your dough is fried. 
  6. Drizzle the simple syrup on top of the loukoumades and sprinkle your toppings of choice. 


  • Serve immediately, they're best when fresh and crispy. 
  • Substitute 3/4 cup milk and 3/4 water for 1 1/2 cup water and 2 tablespoons of powdered milk.
  • Drizzle honey in lieu of orange blossom simple syrup.
  • Alternate toppings are Nutella, crushed Oreos, powdered sugar, cinnamon, and crushed nuts.
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Frying
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean


  • Serving Size: 10 loukomades
  • Calories: 200
  • Sugar: 4.2 g
  • Sodium: 4 mg
  • Fat: 14.8 g
  • Saturated Fat: 2 g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 13 g
  • Trans Fat: 0 g
  • Carbohydrates: 15.3 g
  • Fiber: 0.8 g
  • Protein: 2.3 g
  • Cholesterol: 1 mg

Keywords: loukoumades, zalabia, zalabia recipe, fried dough balls, Greek donuts, zalabya, dessert recipes, dessert, simple syrup, sugar syrup, plain loukoumades

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