Rosati’s Dough Nuggets – CopyKat Recipes

Rosati’s Dough Nuggets are a tasty appetizer of fried pizza dough bites served with marinara sauce. These crispy fried pizza dough bites are a great Italian finger food to make for a party or game day.

copycat Rosati's dough nuggets with a small bowl of marinara sauce.

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What Makes These Dough Nuggets So Good 

If you are someone who can’t keep your hands off soft breadsticks with dipping sauces, you are going to love this recipe for seasoned fried dough. Pieces of crispy pizza dough surpass the average pizza chain’s breadsticks with its savory seasoning and garlic-butter sauce.

Why You Will Want To Make These Again and Again 

Italian fried pizza dough is hot, fresh, and delicious. If you use prepared pizza dough, they are even a breeze to make.

Fried dough nuggets have enough intensity to serve as a standalone snack, but by reducing the seasoning a bit, they are the perfect accompaniment to a soup or salad. With so many possibilities, you better stock up on ingredients for pizza dough!

Ingredients You Will Need 

This recipe makes the fried dough from pizza dough, so you’ll need:

You can either make your own or buy it in the store. Many grocery stores have refrigerated pizza for sale, but it can be expensive. Making your own isn’t difficult, but it does require time and a few ingredients:

  • Water
  • Dry instant yeast 
  • Olive oil
  • Bread flour
  • Salt
  • Non-stick spray or extra olive oil 

Using yeast can be a little intimidating to some people. Don’t worry. You shouldn’t have any problems if you use dry instant yeast that comes in a packet, like Fleischmann’s. You can also use instant yeast from a jar, but single-serve packets are easier. 

Bread flour is different from all-purpose flour. Bread flour has more protein, essential for forming a denser structure and chewier consistency. 

To make the garlic-butter sauce, you’ll need:

  • Unsalted butter 
  • Garlic
  • Parmesan cheese 
  • Italian seasoning 

Italian seasoning is not the same as a dry Italian dressing mix. It is a single mix that contains common Italian dried herbs, including basil, thyme, oregano, and parsley. It is the key to this garlic-butter sauce, so make sure you use a good one. Something like McCormick Italian Herb Seasoning that comes with an attached grinder is ideal. 

Dipping sauce:

  • Marinara, or another type of pasta sauce
Rosati's dough nuggets ingredients on a tray.

How To Make Fried Dough With Pizza Dough

To make homemade pizza dough:

  1. Stir together a half cup of warm water and the entire packet of instant yeast. After a few minutes, you should notice bubbles form. Restart with new yeast if you don’t see any bubbles after 5 minutes. 
  2. Add the flour and salt to the bowl of a stand mixer. If you don’t have a stand mixer, you can use a bread machine, food processor, or just a mixing bowl and dough whisk. 
  3. Mix the flour and salt together until combined with the wire whisk attachment. Salt can kill yeast, and distributing it throughout the flour helps protect it. 
  4. Pour in the activated yeast, olive oil, and all the room temperature water into the bowl of the stand mixer. 
  5. Mix with a dough hook on low until the pizza dough comes off the sides and forms a ball. 
  6. Remove the dough and knead for a minute or two.
  7. Place the dough in a greased bowl and cover it with plastic wrap. Allow it to rise until it is double in size. 
  8. Punch the dough down to release all the gas. At this point, you can bag the dough and refrigerate it for up to three days or freeze it for up to a month. 
collage of steps for making pizza dough.

To fry the dough nuggets:

  1. Heat vegetable oil in a fryer or Dutch oven until it reaches 350°F.
  2. Divide the dough in half. Put half onto a floured work surface to come up to room temperature. Return the rest of the dough to the fridge. 
  3. Roll out the dough into a rectangle about 3/4-inch thick. 
  4. Cut the dough into roughly even-sized squares. 
  5. Place a paper towel-lined wire rack over a baking tray. 
  6. Fry three or four pieces of dough at a time until the first side is golden. Use a spider to flip and fry the other side of the bread. Transfer the fried bread onto the towel-lined wire rack to drain. 
pizza dough cut into small pieces.

To finish the fried pizza dough:

  1. Mix together the Italian seasoning and Parmesan cheese in a large mixing bowl. 
  2. Combine the melted butter and grated garlic in another large mixing bowl. 
  3. Add all the still warm fried bread into the bowl with melted butter. Toss to coat.
  4. Transfer the fried bread into the bowl with seasoning. Toss to coat. 
  5. Serve immediately with a side of marinara sauce in a small bowl.
copycat Rosati's dough nuggets and a small bowl of marinara on a platter.

What To Serve With Dough Nuggets 

You can enjoy Italian fried pizza dough as a savory snack, but it is also great as a side for salads and soups. If serving as a snack, a sauce or two. marinara sauce, buffalo sauce, melted Velveeta cheese, sour cream dip, and ranch dressing are all great options. 

How To Store Leftover Dough Nuggets 

You can keep the fried dough inside a sealed bag in the fridge for up to three days. 

If you want to keep the fried dough for up to three months, freeze in a single layer on a baking tray and transfer the fried dough nuggets to a freezer-safe container. Thaw the dough before reheating. 

How To Best Reheat Dough Nuggets 

You can reheat fried dough in the oven:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. Place the fried pizza dough on a baking grease baking tray. 
  3. Heat for 10 to 15 minutes or until hot. Turn after 7 minutes. 
overhead view of copycat Rosati's dough nuggets with marinara sauce.

Favorite Appetizer Recipes

Check out more of my easy appetizer recipes and the best Italian recipes on CopyKat!

copycat Rosati's dough nuggets with a small bowl of marinara sauce.

Rosati’s Dough Nuggets

You can make Rosati’s fried pizza dough nuggets at home with this easy copycat recipe.

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Course: Appetizer

Cuisine: Italian

Keyword: Dough Nuggets, Fried Pizza Dough

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Servings: 8

Calories: 190kcal


  • 1 pound refrigerated pizza dough or prepare the pizza dough recipe

Homemoade Pizza Dough

  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 1/8 teaspoon active dry yeast (1 package of instant yeast)
  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 cups bread flour (22 ounces by weight) plus more for working the dough
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • non-stick spray

Garlic Butter Sauce

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated or finely minced garlic

Dough Nuggets

  • 4 cups oil for frying plus more if needed
  • 4 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
  • 4 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 1 24-ounce jar marina sauce RAO’s recommended


Homemade Pizza Dough

  • Place the 1/2 cup of warm water and yeast together in a medium bowl and whisk together briefly. Allow the yeast enough time to bubble up and become active, this should take a few minutes.

  • If the yeast is inactive, you may need to replace the yeast and try again. Add room temperature water and oil to the yeast mixture and stir to combine.

  • Into a food processor bowl, pour in flour and salt, and pulse to combine.

  • Add yeast, olive oil, and water through the tube of the food processor and process.

  • The dough will form into a ball. Process until the dough is smooth and elastic.

  • The dough will be sticky. If you are going to use the dough immediately or within a few days, place it into a bowl that has been sprayed with non-stick spray and cover the dough with plastic wrap.

  • Let the dough rise until it has doubled in size, this may take up to 2 hours.

Dough Nuggets

  • Divide pizza dough in half. Roll out the dough into a circle, ⅜ inch thick.

  • Cut the dough into squares.

  • Heat at least 4 cups of oil into a deep heavy-bottomed pot to 350°F.

  • Drop a few pieces of dough into the oil and fry until golden. Flip the dough pieces halfway through frying.

  • Remove cooked dough pieces and place them on a wire rack resting on a baking sheet.
  • Allow the oil to drain off the nuggets for about 30 seconds.

  • Sprinkle on some of the cheese and Italian seasoning.

  • Repeat frying with remaining dough pieces.

  • Place the dough nuggets in a large bowl and drizzle garlic butter sauce over them. Toss to coat the nuggets with the sauce.

  • Serve with marinara sauce.


Calories: 190kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 13mg | Sodium: 485mg | Potassium: 17mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 168IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 47mg | Iron: 2mg