Almond Cannoli with Lemon-Basil Ricotta Cream Filling

Almond Cannoli with Lemon-Basil Ricotta Cream Filling

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From: Diabetic Living Magazine

Homemade cannoli shells are filled with a creamy lemon and ricotta cheese filling with a hint of fresh basil for a gourmet dessert. For a shortcut, you can substitute purchased cannoli shells (8 full-size or 16 mini).

Ingredients 8 servings

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Original recipe yields 8 servings
Nutrition per serving may change if servings are adjusted.
  • Almond Cannoli
  • 2 egg whites
  • ⅓ cup sugar (see Tips)
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons ground almonds
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or almond oil
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • Lemon-Basil Ricotta Cream Filling
  • 3 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufchatel), softened
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons finely shredded lemon peel
  • 1¼ cups light or part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 2 tablespoons snipped fresh basil
  • Garnish
  • Lemon peel strips (optional)
  • Small fresh basil leaves (optional)


  • Prep

  • Active

  • Ready In

  1. To prepare cannoli: Preheat oven to 375°F. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper. In a medium mixing bowl use a rotary beater to beat egg whites until foamy. Add sugar and beat for 1 minute. Sprinkle with flour, almonds and salt. Fold together gently. Drizzle with oil and vanilla. Fold together gently.
  2. Drop batter evenly into 8 mounds, putting 4 mounds on each cookie sheet and separating the mounds by about 4 inches. Spread each mound to a 6-inch circle.
  3. Bake one cookie sheet for 5 to 6 minutes or until bottoms of cookies are lightly browned. Immediately loosen cookies from cookie sheet. Turn over and wrap around metal cannoli cones or the straight metal handle of a whisk. Cool slightly and remove from cones or whisk handle while still slightly warm. Cool on a wire rack, seam side down. (If cookies become too stiff to roll, return briefly to the oven to soften.) Repeat with remaining cookie sheet.
  4. To prepare filling: In a medium bowl beat cream cheese with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Beat in honey and lemon peel until smooth. Stir in ricotta cheese and basil.
  5. To serve, pipe or spoon cheese mixture into cooled cannoli shells. Garnish tops of shells with lemon peel strips and/or basil leaves if desired. Serve immediately.
  • Test Kitchen Tip: We do not recommend using a sugar substitute for this recipe.
  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare cannoli shells and filling as directed. Place shells in an airtight container and store at room temperature up to 3 days. Place filling in an airtight container and chill up to 3 days. To serve, let filling stand at room temperature for 30 minutes to soften slightly. Fill and garnish shells as directed.

Nutrition information

  • Serving size: 1 cannoli
  • Per serving: 172 calories; 9 g fat(3 g sat); 0 g fiber; 18 g carbohydrates; 6 g protein; 12 mcg folate; 17 mg cholesterol; 15 g sugars; 187 IU vitamin A; 1 mg vitamin C; 84 mg calcium; 0 mg iron; 120 mg sodium; 55 mg potassium
  • Carbohydrate Servings: 1
  • Exchanges: 1 other carb, 1 lean meat, 1½ meat

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