Malanga Fritters (Frituras de Malanga) Have Such A Great CRUNCH!

Malanga Fritters

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What I love the most about malanga fritters is the CRUNCH! Frituras de malanga, as they are called in Spanish, are a super crunchy Cuban appetizer that’s quick and easy to make. My daughter and I love them, especially with a drizzle of Sriracha mayo or lime cilantro sauce. It’s a super Cuban recipe but not as popular as maduros or plantain chips. Well, I’m glad I can give these malanga fritters a little hype today, because they do deserve it!


What Is Malanga?

Here I am waxing poetic about malanga fritters, and you’re probably wondering what the heck is a malanga?! Malanga is a root vegetable that’s very common in Latin America and the Caribbean. It’s creamier than a potato and more nutrient-dense. And the skin is hairy… I know, that sounds weird! It’s also skinnier than a potato.

Malanga is a great source of fiber and very easy on the stomach. In fact, when Cubans have any stomach issues, the home remedy is a nice bowl of mashed malanga (puree de malanga). Read this article to learn more about the health benefits of malanga. 

Malanga is also used in soups instead of potatoes. We make a delicious cream of malanga soup that’s actually very popular and featured on most Cuban restaurant menus. 

If you can’t find malanga for this recipe, you can try using taro. While not the same, the two are pretty similar and sometimes sold interchangeably.

Frituras de Malanga

Ingredients for Malanga Fritters

The ingredients list is super short and simple for this one:

  • Malanga
  • Minced Onions
  • Minced Parsley
  • Garlic Powder
  • Salt
  • White Pepper
  • Vinegar

The onions and the parsley should be finely minced. You’ll notice in my recipe photos there are some bigger pieces of parsley… that’s just mami (aka Bean Train) doing her own thing while my back was turned ? I think it’s better when everything is finely minced, but mami likes chunky stuff. You decide which version you like best (but try mine first!)

Malanga Fritters

How to Make Frituras de Malanga

These fritters have very few ingredients, so it’s an easy Cuban recipe to make. The most difficult thing is grating the malanga because it can get a bit slippery. Not slimy, just slippery so it makes grating a bit of a challenge. Weird, right? I use a paper towel to hold the malanga in place as I’m grating it. You can process it in the food processor, but the texture is better if you grate it. 

Once you’ve heated the oil in a frying pan, drop the malanga mix by tablespoons into the hot oil. What type of spoon you use to drop the dough into the batter will determine the shape. My mom always used a heaping spoonful and they come out an irregular oval, like you see in some of the photos. I like to use a mini ice cream scooper to give them a more rounded look. Also, you can make the malanga fritters a bit bigger, but I like how crunchy they are when they’re small. I serve them with a lime-cilantro sauce or Sriracha mayo. It just kicks it up a notch?

As with most fritters, frituras de malanga are best eaten hot. They tend to get soggy if you let them sit too long. So, I suggest you make as many fritters are you think your crew will eat and save the remaining dough in the fridge to make another day. The dough keeps in the refrigerator for a few days. This recipe should make about 24 fritters.

If you can find malanga, I hope you give these a try. This is a delicious Cuban appetizer to serve at your next tapas party… with a glass of sangria, of course. ¡Buen provecho!

Frituras de Malanga

Want more recipes for Cuban appetizers? Check out my Cuban Tapas Party recipes!

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Frituras de Malanga

Malanga Fritters (Frituras de Malanga) Have Such A Great CRUNCH!

  • Author: Sandi Abbott
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 24 1x
  • Category: fritters
  • Method: frying
  • Cuisine: Cuban


These malanga fritters (aka frituras de malanga) are a super crunchy cuban appetizer perfect for tapas. If you’re not familiar with malanga, it’s a root vegetable that’s creamier and more nutrient-dense than potatoes. 



2 cups grated malanga (about 3 malangas)

½ cup finely diced onion

1 teaspoon grated garlic

2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley

2 teaspoons salt

½ teaspoon white pepper

1 tablespoon white vinegar

1 beaten egg

2 cups vegetable oil (for frying)


Peel and grate the malanga using a box grater affiliate link (or use a food processor). While you can use a food processor, the texture is much better if you grate it. The last little bits are hard to grate, so you may want to use the food processor for those bits or discard them. 

Finely dice the onions and the parsley. (My mom tends to leave the parsley a bit bigger, but I prefer it finely diced!)

Malanga Fritter Dough

Add the rest of the ingredients to the grated malanga. Taste and adjust the salt and pepper.

Malanga Fritters

Heat the vegetable oil in a medium frying pan on medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, then drop the malanga mixture by tablespoonfuls into the hot oil. Fry for about 7-8 minutes or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Add a little salt and serve. 

Makes 24 fritters. 


Grating the malanga is a bit of challenge because malanga is slippery. I use a paper towel to get a firmer grip on the malanga. You need to use the side of the grater with the smallest holes. 

Fry only the ones you intend to eat right away, as fritters get soggy if you let them sit too long. Then, you can refrigerate the uncooked dough for another day. The dough keeps for a few days in the fridge. 

Serve with sriracha mayo or lime cilantro sauce. 


  • Serving Size: 2 fritters

Keywords: malanga, malanga fritters, frituras de malanga, cuban appetizers

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