top of page

Sicilian cannoli: tradition and the original recipe

Let's explore one of the most iconic desserts of Italian cuisine: the Sicilian cannoli. These sweets, with their crispy cylinder-shaped pastry and delicious cream inside, have won the palates of millions of people around the world.

Do you know the origin of this delicacy? More importantly, do you know the real recipe for Sicilian cannoli?

Let's explore the history and tradition behind this typical Sicilian dessert, and the original recipe for preparing Sicilian cannoli in the most authentic way possible.

Most importantly, come visit us at the hotel to taste the flavors of Sicily!

Il caratteristico guscio croccante dei cannoli siciliani
The characteristic crispy shell of Sicilian cannoli

The history of the Sicilian cannoli

As is often the case, the origin of the Sicilian cannolo recipe is uncertain. Some accounts date it back to Roman times, so much so that it is even mentioned by Cicero in his writings, who describes it as "tubus farinarius dulcissimo edulio ex lacte fartus", that means a "farinaceous tube filled with a very sweet milk food." The distinctive elongated shape, on the other hand, is attributed to the Arabs.

Over the centuries the recipe was revived and modified several times, until it was obtained what is now considered the true Sicilian cannolo recipe.

The original recipe

The Sicilian cannolo is a true symbol of the island's confectionery art and is on the list of Traditional Food Products (P.A.T.). With its tube-shaped fried wafer and sheep's milk ricotta filling, this dessert conquers the palate at first bite.

The decoration of cannoli also varies according to the area of Sicily, with chocolate pieces and candied oranges and cherries in the western part, and almonds and pistachio grains in the eastern part.

Let's find out the recipe for Sicilian cannoli, to make them at home as in a pastry shop.

La ricetta dei cannoli siciliani
Sicilian cannoli recipe


With these doses you get about 16 cannoli. It is necessary to have aluminum cylinders to form the shells.

For the cannoli rind

  • 250 g of 00 flour

  • 1 teaspoon bitter cocoa powder

  • 50 gr of caster sugar

  • 30 gr of soft butter

  • 1 egg

  • 1 small glass of marsala

  • a tablespoon of white wine vinegar

  • cinnamon powder

  • vanilla (bagged or 1 tablespoon extract)

  • 3 g salt

  • oil for frying

For the cannoli filling

  • 800 g sheep's milk ricotta

  • 300 g granulated sugar

  • 120 g dark chocolate chips

To decorate

  • chocolate drops


Preparation time: about 1 hour

Cooking time: about 10 minutes

Let's start with the ricotta cream, which is the heart of this dessert. To make a creamy, lump-free mixture, drain the ricotta in a cloth and transfer it to a bowl. Add the sugar and blend with a food processor, then add the chocolate chips and mix well. Finally, store in the refrigerator for at least 4 to 5 hours.

To make the waffle, cream the butter with vanilla, cinnamon, salt, and sugar with whisk until fluffy. Add the egg, continue working with the whisks, and then add the sifted flour, alternating with wine vinegar and marsala. The dough should be firm and workable. Seal with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.

To shape the cannoli, divide the dough into 3-4 parts and roll it out thinly with the help of a pasta machine, or a rolling pin. Divide the sheet into squares of about 10x10 cm and place a cylinder in the center of each. Brush with beaten egg, seal and refrigerate for at least an hour.

When the cylinders are cool, fry the waffle cones one at a time in hot oil. Drain on paper towels, let them cool and fill with the ricotta cream and chocolate chips. Decorate with dried fruit sprinkles, chocolate chips, or candied orange peel depending on preference. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve!


bottom of page