Fried Zucchini Flowers and Sage for a tasty nibble

It is quite common to have some little fried treats in Italian restaurants whilst waiting for your meal.

One of the most popular is the widely known fried courgette’s flowers. They can be enjoyed just deep fried on their own or with a filling, like mozzarella and anchovies which is quite popular in Rome.

My grandma used to sprinkle some sugar over them and turned them into sweet treats. Courgettes flowers can be male or female. There are always many more male flowers (which function is to pollinate the female ones) and fewer female ones.

It is easy to distinguish the female ones as they have a miniature courgette fruit at the base of the flower whereas the male ones don’t.
So, once the female ones have appeared, you can pick all the male flowers. I have fried some sage leafs too. They are also very popular as an appetizer. Get the largest leaves you can find, dip them into the batter and just fry.
I have used cold beer to make up the batter but you can use just cold sparkling water if you prefer.
  • Prep Time : 25 minutes
  • Cook Time : 15 minutes


  • zucchini (courgettes) flowers – 10
  • sage leaves – a handful
  • flour – 3 tbsp
  • egg – 1
  • salt – a pinch
  • cold beer – 200 ml (more might be needed)
  • oil for frying


Wash the flowers in gentle running water to avoid damaging them. Wash the sage leafs too.
Open gently the flowers and remove the stamens of the male flowers which have a strong taste.


In a bowl add the egg, the beer, flour and salt. Beat the mixture up well. Add some more beer if needed. The mixture should be partly running and partly thick.

Dip the flowers and the sage into the mixture and coat them gently with it.

Heat plenty of oil in a large pan and when hot, fry the flowers and the sage until golden.

Enjoy with cold white wine or a glass of beer.


28 thoughts on “Fried Zucchini Flowers and Sage for a tasty nibble

  1. Beautiful, I´ve never tried them, I´m anxious to see how they taste. Un beso,


  2. Adoro i fiori di zucchina fritti, e preparati in altri modi! Mi incuriosisce molto la versione dolce che faceva tua nonna, proverò a farli così, con lo zucchero, chissà che bontà! Ciao


  3. I've often stuffed Zucchini flowers with cheese but I have never fried them with sage. It sounds so interesting and delicious Alida. I will have to remember this for the next time I get a hold of some. I only wish all that cantaloupe in the garden were zucchini!Thank you so much for sharing…


  4. This is one of my favourite appetisers but I've never made them! Must give your recipe a try before it cools down and the courgettes wilt!


  5. These look so tasty. I've heard courgette flowers are good stuffed and battered as you have done, but although I keep meaning to I've still not tried them. That's a good tip about removing the stamens, I've not heard that before. I like the sound of battered sage leaves too. Italians really do have the best cuisine!


  6. absolutely delicious. I love courgette flowers but only rarely get to eat them as you have to grow your own to find them!


  7. wooowI love courgette flowers. I have lots of them on the orchard this summer, but I hadn't heard about fired sage leaves before. I'll try them!have a nice weekend 🙂


  8. What an interesting recipe! I love it, it looks so gorgeous and sounds absolutely delicious! I never tried cooking courgette flowers, now I look forward to trying them out using your recipe! Have a great weekend!


  9. Lovely….these fries took me back to my childhood, pumpkin flowers are a delicacy back home, incidentally they look similar and also have the male and female ones….we fry them in a batter made with gram flour and rice flour to make them crispy!


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