Is there anything more delightful to eat than a crunchy, fresh-from-the-oil latke? This time of year — Hanukkah begins at sundown Dec. 2 and goes through the evening of Dec. 10 — we’re hard-pressed to think of one.

The crisp on the outside, soft within fritters are perhaps most commonly made with potatoes, but we’ve got our fair share of twists and turns to add to your latke list. Here are five ways to make them — and be sure to check out our how-to guide on latkes, right over here.

Crunchy Parsnip-Carrot Latkes, above. Light and tender, this combo of root vegetables provides a little sweetness that is tamed by garam masala. There’s extra crunch, thanks to dehydrated potato flakes (a.k.a. the stuff used to make instant mashed potatoes). Serve with sour cream.



(Tom McCorkle for The Washington Post; food styling by Bonnie S. Benwick/The Washington Post)

Apple Cheddar Latkes. Run, do not walk, to make these potato-less pancakes. They come together quickly and won over every single skeptic with their cheesy, comforting, crispy goodness. They are best eaten just after they’re made, but we nibbled on them throughout the day and weren’t mad about it. Apple and cheese not your thing? Try Cabbage Latkes for another potato-less treat.



(Deb Lindsey for The Washington Post)

Herb and Meat Latkes. For latkes you can make in advance and serve at room temperature, go for these, with a tasty mix of ground beef and lamb. A trio of herbs — parsley, cilantro and mint — add loads of flavor. Serve them with a tahini sauce for dipping.



(Goran Kosanovic for The Washington Post)

Zucchini-Potato Latkes. The grated zucchini adds a little lightness to these fellas, but you do need to take care to wring out as much moisture as possible. (Basically, treat the mixture and the portions you make like stress balls and squeeze the heck out of them.) This recipe also presents the perfect condiment for those who can’t choose between sour cream and apple sauce: Roasted Apple-Aleppo Yogurt Sauce! It’s the best of both worlds! We really can have it all!



(Tom McCorkle for The Washington Post; food styling by Bonnie S. Benwick/The Washington Post)

Frankenstein Latkes. Back to reality with these nubbly creatures, dubbed “Frankenstein” because deputy Food editor and recipe editor Bonnie S. Benwick cobbled them together from various techniques and recipes. Don’t worry, though, they won’t resent you for creating them and cause you to question your humanity or the fate of society. The mixture of potatoes, parsnips and matzoh meal is “bake fried” — baked at a high temperature in a shallow puddle of oil — which means you can make quite a few at once. (Meaning, they’d be good for a party.) Eat them with applesauce, or put on all the ritz and serve with sour cream and lox.

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