Ham and cheese croquettes

Ham and cheese croquettes are not only a great way to use up the Christmas ham, these cheesy delights are delicious any time of year! Whip up a batch for a tasty after-school or pre-dinner snack.

  • 15 mins preparation
  • 10 mins cooking
  • 3 hrs marinating
  • Makes 20
  • Print


  • 60 gram butter
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 100 gram leftover ham, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup plain flour
  • 1 1/4 cup milk
  • 150 gram manchego or parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • vegetable oil, to deep-fry
Speedy tomato sauce
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon chilli flakes (optional)
  • 400 gram canned crushed tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon caster sugar
  • salt and black pepper


  • 1
    Melt butter in a saucepan, add onion and ham; cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until onion is soft. Add flour; cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until mixture thickens and bubbles. Remove from heat; gradually whisk in milk. Return to heat; cook, stirring, until sauce boils and thickens. Simmer, stirring, for 1 minute; stir in cheese, paprika and parsley.
  • 2
    Pour mixture into a shallow dish. Cover, chill for 2 hours or until cold.
  • 3
    Using two dessert spoons, shape tablespoon measures of mixture into small ovals. Dip croquettes in egg, then coat in breadcrumbs. Place croquettes on a tray lined with plastic wrap or baking paper. Cover; chill for 1 hour.
  • 4
    Meanwhile, make Speedy Tomato sauce (see below).
  • 5
    Fill a large saucepan one-third full with oil; heat to 180°C (or until a cube of bread turns golden in 15 seconds). Deep-fry the croquettes, in batches, for 2 minutes or until heated through and lightly browned. Drain on paper towel. Serve with tomato sauce.
Speedy tomato sauce
  • 6
    Heat oil in a pan; cook onion, stirring, for 10 minutes or until soft but not coloured. Add garlic and chilli; cook, stirring, for 30 seconds or until fragrant. Stir in the tomatoes and sugar; simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes or until sauce thickens. Season to taste.


Recipe can be made to the end of step 4 up to 1 day ahead.