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Save Recipe Cicerchiata
  • 1Yield
  • -10Servings+
  • 30 mPrep Time
  • 30 mCook Time
  • 60 mReady In
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Cicerchiata is a traditional sweet from Abruzzo, Marche and Molise but is also widespread in Umbria and Lazio. Cicerchiata is a sweet usually prepared for the occasion of the Carnival.
We start with a dough based on flour, eggs, sugar and oil, or butter. From this dough, we can prepare small balls, and then fry them in olive oil or lard.
Once drained, we drizzle with honey and arrange them to form the shape of a crown.

The dough gets perfumed with liquor such as limoncello or rum.
Some also add lemon or orange zest, enriched with almonds to give it extra crunchiness.

It is a dessert like the famous Neapolitan struffoli. Often prepared during the Christmas holidays, but its origins are not at all too clear. There are those who argue it was born in Abruzzo, and those who instead argue that it was born in the territories on the edge of Umbria and the Marches.

There are also different versions on the genesis of the name. Many think that cicerchiata is a medieval term that refers to the “cicerchia”, an ancient legume very common in Africa, Asia and some regions of central Italy. It would thus mean “heap of grass peas”.

Fragrant and delicious, this sweet dessert is perfect to serve at the end of a meal, on the occasion of a special lunch, or to start a Carnival party. They will win over the young and the old for how simple and good they are.


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60.00 g
95.50 mg
7.20 g
1.10 g
7.00 g
Saturated Fat
Serving Size
Trans Fat
Unsaturated Fat
0.62 g

Step by step method

  • Step 1

    Mix the eggs and sugar in a bowl, then add the oil, liqueur and grated orange peel and keep mixing.

  • Step 2

    Gradually add the flour and knead.

  • Step 3

    Cover with a cloth or bowl and let rest for 30 minutes.

  • Step 4

    Cut the dough into small pieces and cut a string from each piece. Cut the string into small pieces no larger than a chickpea which you will have to round more or less regularly with your hands.

  • Step 5

    Fry the balls of dough until golden brown.

  • Step 6

    Once all the balls have been fried, heat the honey in a saucepan to melt it and dip the balls and almonds in honey. Lay the balls on a serving dish modeling the shape of a crown.

Tips & variations

  • Preserve in fridge for up to 2 days

  • You can add dried fruit pieces to the dough balls before frying!

  • You can use Nutella and almonds instead of honey

  • Accompany with a citrus drink to balance the sweetness

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