Try this Loukoumades recipe from Grecian chef Nikos Kontogiannatos. Nikos says, "You can’t visit Athens and not try loukoumades. I would go as far as saying they’re the best dessert you can find anywhere in the world. Small fried doughnut balls dressed with honey and walnuts, they’re feather light and taste even better on top of kaimaki (made with mastic) ice cream."

This is a recipe that Nikos shared as part of his guide to Athenian cuisine. Check it out to learn more about iconic Greek dishes such as gyros, moussaka, dolmades and more.

Nikos Kontongiannatos, head chef of Firebird in London, comes from Patras in Greece. Previously head chef at Caravan Fitzrovia, at Firebird he draws on his heritage to cook seasonal produce over an open-fire grill. Many of the dishes on the menu have nods to Nikos’s Greek identity through the ingredients and cooking methods he uses, such as lamb with tzatziki and pitta, and tomatoes with feta cream and black olives.

For more inspiration, check out our collection of sweet and savoury doughnut recipes.


  • 250g plain flour
  • 1 tsp caster sugar
  • 1 tsp fast-action dried yeast
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon, plus extra to serve
  • 415ml vegetable oil, plus extra for the bowl
  • 10g runny honey, plus extra to drizzle


  • STEP 1

    Put the flour, sugar, yeast, cinnamon and 1 tsp of salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and whisk briefly to combine.

  • STEP 2

    Combine 15ml of the oil and honey with 200ml of warm water in a jug. Using the paddle attachment and on a medium-high speed, gradually pour into the dry ingredients, beating until you have a smooth dough, about 3-4 mins. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl, cover and move to warm space, allowing about 1 hr 15 mins for it to double in size.

  • STEP 3

    Line a large baking tray or plate with kitchen paper and put it near to where you will be frying. Pour 400ml of oil into a deep, wide pan (the oil should fill the pan no more than halfway). Put over a medium-high heat. Wait for the oil to reach about 170C – you will know the oil is ready when a small pinch of dough starts to sizzle and brown and rises to the surface.

  • STEP 4

    Oiling your hands, make the doughnuts by putting a small fistful of batter in one hand and enclosing it within your palm, making sure it isn’t leaking from in between your fingers. Gently squeeze your fist so that balls of dough come out at the top, through the hole made with your thumb and index finger – about the size of a walnut. Using an oiled spoon, scoop up the dough and carefully transfer to the hot oil. You will get approximately 2-3 balls per fist, enough to fry in one batch depending on how large the pan is.

  • STEP 5

    Fry each batch for 3-4 mins, turning often, until golden and cooked through. Remove using a slotted spoon and drain on the lined plate. Drizzle with extra honey and a dusting of cinnamon, if you like.

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