Ham & cheese croquetas

Ham & cheese croquetas

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(14 ratings)

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 1 hr, 25 mins plus 4 hrs 30 mins chilling

More effort

Makes 24
These tasty, deep-fried bites can be made ahead and frozen, perfect for no-fuss entertaining as part of a party buffet spread

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per croqueta

  • kcal141
  • fat8g
  • saturates3g
  • carbs13g
  • sugars6g
  • fibre1g
  • protein4g
  • salt0.3g
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  • 25g butter



    Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

  • ½ small onion, finely chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 50g plain flour
  • 250ml milk



    One of the most widely used ingredients, milk is often referred to as a 'complete' food…

  • 140g sliced smoked ham, diced
  • 50g mature cheddar, coarsely grated
  • 50g gruyère, finely grated



    Gruyère is an undoubted pinnacle of traditional Swiss cheese-making, a culinary masterpiece as…

  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp double cream

For the coating

  • 2 large eggs



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition packed with protein and a…

  • 50g plain flour
  • 140g fine dried breadcrumbs
  • sunflower oil, for deep frying
    Sunflower oil

    Sunflower oil

    Sunflower oil is made from pressing sunflower seeds and extracting the oil. It's usually…

For the tomato chilli jam

  • 300g ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped



    A member of the nightshade family (along with aubergines, peppers and chillies), tomatoes are in…

  • 1 long red chilli, finely chopped (deseeded if you don't like it too hot)
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 4 large garlic cloves, crushed
  • 100g demerara sugar
  • 100ml red wine vinegar


  1. To make the croquetas, melt the butter in a medium saucepan and gently fry the onion for 3 mins or until lightly coloured. Stir in the flour and cook for 30 secs. Gradually add the milk, stirring constantly, and cook over a low heat for 5 mins until thick and glossy. Stir in the ham, cheese, mustard and cream, and season to taste. Cook for 1 min more until the cheese melts, stirring constantly.

  2. Pour into a bowl and cover the surface with cling film to stop a skin forming. Leave to cool, then chill for 4 hrs or overnight - the mixture needs to be very stiff to form the croquetas. Take heaped teaspoons of the mixture and, with wet hands, roll into 24 small oval shapes and put on a tray. Beat the eggs in a shallow bowl, put the flour on a plate and half of the breadcrumbs in a bowl.

  3. Roll each of the croquetas lightly in flour, then in egg before coating in breadcrumbs. Place on a baking tray lined with baking parchment. Use the remaining breadcrumbs to top up the bowl halfway through the coating process. Chill for 30 mins (or to freeze, see tip, below left).

  4. Meanwhile, make the tomato chilli jam. Put all the ingredients in a large saucepan and bring to a gentle simmer. Cover loosely with a lit and cook for 50 mins - 1 hr, stirring occasionally, until thick and glossy. Leave to cool before serving.

  5. Fill a large saucepan one-third full with the sunflower oil and heat to 180C (or heat the oil in an electric deep-fat fryer). Do not overheat and do not leave hot oil unattended. Using a metal slotted spoon, lower 6 croquets into the oil and cook for 1.5 mins or until golden brown. Transfer to a baking tray lined with kitchen paper to absorb excess oil, and continue cooking the rest. Serve with the chilli jam for dipping.

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Comments, questions and tips

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Eliana Covell's picture
Eliana Covell
21st Mar, 2020
used mozzarella instead of gruyere and yoghurt instead of cream. Only left to chill for 30 mins because as a result was less runny. Delicious.
3rd Jan, 2019
I made these for Christmas Eve & they went down a treat! I made them exactly as it says & I left the mixture overnight. I used homemade breadcrumbs that I had in the freezer for the coating. Everyone loved them & would have easily eaten double the amount!
17th Nov, 2017
Very tasty but my mixture came out far too runny, even when left overnight. I froze individual clumps quickly in order to coat them, then fried and refroze. They cooked from frozen very well. I will make again but will adjust the sauce.
12th Aug, 2017
I made this exactly as the recipe except my cheddar had jalepenos in it. I made the mixture the night before so I could refrigerate over night but in a push I could have rolled it after an hour of cooling. This was a practice run for a party so I had spares which I froze. Absolutely lovely, much lighter than I expected. I am thinking of trying a chicken and mushroom version.
3rd Aug, 2017
This is my recipe to go back to time after time. I weigh out the solid mixture to make sure all are the same uniform size. These are delicious as is the jam.
3rd Oct, 2016
Really delicious! I forgot to add the cream and I used different kinds of cheese (Manchego and a crumbly cheddar I had) and it was still fabulous. I left the sauce in the fridge for eight hours to solidify and it was fine. The croquetas were also much lighter than I expected. I froze the uncooked ones I had left and I'll cook them straight from frozen next time.
13th Jun, 2015
I gave this five stars, but the stupid website amended it to one. Grrrrr.
13th Jun, 2015
I was short of time, so put the mixture in the freezer for a while which worked fine and meant I had no problem rolling into shape. They were absolutely delicious; crispy on the outside and meltingly soft inside. Yum!
8th Jan, 2015
I also made a double batch and froze. They are delicious. I didn't have any issues with the mixture being too runny, and was able to roll without chilling them, I also cooked from frozen and they were fine. A firm favourite and handy to have in the freezer.
31st Dec, 2014
These are delicious. Have made double the quantity and frozen the rest for lunches and the kids to have a quick bite. I too left the mixture overnight and it was a really solid consistency so easy to roll. Heating through after freezing is fairly quick and consistency is good. They do explode a little if you leave them too long to reheat. May try them with some Manchego cheese next time.


2nd Jul, 2020
Please could you advise if these should be deep fried before freezing, then reheated in the oven - or should they be frozen before deep frying, then cooked in the oven? (See also question below).
20th Oct, 2015
The freezing instructions in the method seem to contradict the freezing instructions in the footnote. To clarify these are best frozen once they have been deep fried and cooled? (And not once coated but prior to deep frying)?
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