Perfect Homemade Sopapilla Recipe – Light and airy, slightly sweet Mexican restaurant-style sopapillas (AKA fry bread) are easy to make at home. They are delicious served warm for dessert with honey on the side!

Perfect Homemade Sopapilla Recipe

Mexican Fry Bread

We are big fans of Mexican food in our household.

It’s often the cuisine of choice when deciding where to eat dinner out, or what to order for takeout on the weekends. The spices, textures, delicious varieties of flavors, and of course, stout margaritas with mounds of chips and guacamole, keep us coming back for more again and again.

Besides serving irresistible dips and main dishes, all of our favorite Mexican restaurants have at least one thing in common: They all offer warm, fresh, sweet sopapillas for dessert.

Sopapillas are a type of fry bread, puffed up in hot oil to create massive bubbles on the inside. They are just slightly sweet on their own, so they are meant to be cracked open and served with honey.

how to make sopapillas from scratch

Perfect Homemade Sopapillas

There’s just nothing more wonderfully indulgent after enjoying a big, satisfying dinner than tearing open airy, crisp on the outside, and slightly chewy on the inside sopapillas. Typically drizzled with a bit of honey, they have just the right amount of sweetness to round out a meal.

Perfecto.

Since we also cook a lot of Mexican recipes at home, I often find myself still wanting these fried dough treats after dinner. So I figured, why not give them a try in my kitchen?

As it turns out, it is super easy to make hot and fresh Mexican restaurant-style sopapillas – with huge airy bubbles and tons of flavor – right in your own house!

Your family will love our Perfect Homemade Sopapillas Recipe for celebrating Cinco de Mayo, and as a frequent dessert after all of your Mexican-inspired meals. But don’t forget, sopapillas are popular to serve at celebrations in other Latin American countries as well, including Argentina, Uruguay, and Peru.

airy, light, crispy and chewy sopapillas are slightly sweet fry bread

What Ingredients You Need for Our Sopapilla Recipe

Traditional fry bread recipes are often made with only a handful of pantry staple ingredients.

We’ve put our own spin on the typical sopaipilla recipe by adding ground cinnamon for an extra kick of flavor!

Here are the simple items you need:

  • All-purpose flour
  • Warm milk – or warm water
  • Lard – or vegetable shortening
  • Baking powder
  • Sugar
  • Ground cinnamon
  • Salt
  • Vegetable or peanut oil – for frying
  • Powdered sugar – for dusting
  • Honey – for serving
sopapilla dough

How to Make Sopapillas

Our sopapilla recipe requires very little prep or actual cooking effort. You can even put the dough together just before serving dinner, and then easily fry them right after eating your meal.

Here are the simple steps for making our Perfect Sopapilla Fry Bread Recipe at home:

1. Set out a stand mixer. Place the flour, lard, baking powder, sugar, cinnamon, and salt in the bowl. Pour the warm milk over the lard, and then beat on medium until very smooth.

If the dough doesn’t quite come together, add another small splash of milk and beat again.

2. Wrap the dough in plastic and let it rest for 20-30 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, set a large 6-8 quart sauce pot/large dutch oven over medium heat. Add the oil to the pot, and attach a frying thermometer to the side of the pot with the tip down in the oil. Bring the temperature to 375 degrees F. (No need for a professional deep fryer here!)

Set a holding plate on the side lined with paper towels.

cutting dough to make sopapillas recipe

4. Once the sopapilla dough has had time to rest, sprinkle a clean work surface with extra flour. Roll the dough ball out into a large rectangle with a rolling pin, 1/8 -1 /4 inch thick. Use a pizza cutter to cut the dough into 3-inch squares.

homemade dough for sopapillas from scratch

5. Working in batches, carefully drop 3-5 squares at a time in the hot oil. Once they rise to the surface of the oil, use tongs to flip them over and continue to fry for 1-2 minutes per side until light golden brown.

Be careful not to over-fry the sopapillas. They will look darker out of the oil!

homemade fry bread in oil

Use a slotted spoon or tongs to transfer the sopapillas to the holding plate lined with paper towels, and continue to fry the remaining squares of dough. (For an extra layer of flavor, you can dip them in cinnamon sugar after they come out of the oil.)

homemade fry bread recipe on plate

Get the Complete (Printable) Perfect Homemade Sopapillas Recipe Below. Enjoy!

Lastly, lightly dust the sopapillas with sifted powdered sugar. Then serve warm, with a side of honey. You can even drizzle honey or chocolate over them for more presentation. 

These bubbly, crispy, and chewy fry breads will keep well stored in an airtight container in the fridge for several days. To reheat, simply warm in a 350-degree F oven for 10 minutes.

Pro Tip: Only dust the sopapillas you are planning to eat immediately with powdered sugar.

sopapillas dusted with powdered sugar for cinco de mayo dessert

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Do These Last?

You can store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. I would not suggest storing them in the fridge or freezer, unless you are storing the dough before it is fried. You can wrap the fry bread dough with plastic wrap and then store it in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 days. You can reheat fried sopapillas in the oven and bake them for a few minutes. 

How Can I Make A Vegan Sopapilla Recipe?

Use vegetable shortening instead of lard, water instead of milk, and omit the side of honey for easy vegan sopapillas.

To add sweetness, serve with maple syrup or your favorite jam.

Can I Make Gluten Free Sopapillas?

I have not attempted this recipe with all-purpose flour alternatives, but you certainly can try substituting your favorite GF flour replacement in this fry bread recipe!

sweet sopapillas served with honey

Looking for More Mexican-Inspired Dessert Recipes?

Check the printable recipe card below for the prep time, total time, and nutrition information including calories, carbohydrates, protein, sugar, and cholesterol percentages.

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Perfect Homemade Sopapilla Recipe

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Perfect Homemade Sopapillas Recipe – Light and airy, slightly sweet Mexican restaurant-style sopapillas (AKA fry bread) are easy to make at home. They are delicious served warm for dessert with honey on the side!
Servings: 24 sopapillas

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Set out a stand mixer. Place the flour, lard, baking powder, sugar, cinnamon, and salt in the bowl. Pour the warm milk over the lard. Then beat on medium until very smooth. If the dough doesn’t quite come together add another small splash of milk and beat again.
  • Wrap the dough in plastic and let it rest for 20-30 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, set a large 6-8 quart sauce pot over medium heat. Add the oil to the pot. Attach a frying thermometer to the side of the pot, making sure the tip is down in the oil. Bring the temperature to 375 degrees F. Set a holding plate on the side lined with paper towels.
  • Once the dough has had time to rest, sprinkle a clean work surface with extra flour. Roll the dough ball out into a large rectangle, 1/8 -1 /4 inch thick. Using a pizza cutter, cut the dough into 3 inch squares.
  • Working in batches, carefully drop 3-5 squares in the hot oil. Let them rise to the surface of the oil, then use tongs to flip them over. Fry for 1-2 minutes per side until light golden brown. (They will look darker out of the oil.)
  • Move to a hold plate. Repeat with the remaining sopapillas.
  • Serve warm, with a side of honey.

Video

Notes

Milk gives the sopapillas a softer interior texture, but in a pinch, you can replace the milk with water.
You can also lightly dust sopapilas with powdered sugar before serving.

Nutrition

Serving: 1pc, Calories: 116kcal, Carbohydrates: 16g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 5g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Cholesterol: 1mg, Sodium: 102mg, Potassium: 86mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 109IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 41mg, Iron: 1mg
Course: Bread, Dessert
Cuisine: Mexican, Tex-Mex
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