While I was sifting through Cinco de Mayo dessert recipes (settling on the tres leches), I found this one for Sopapillas, and set it aside for a rainy day.  Usually when I save something for a rainy day, it gets stuffed away in a drawer, book etc, and doesn’t see the light of day again until my annual spring-cleaning, but it’s been so rainy lately; I figured there’s no time like the present!

Sopapillas are described as “soft pillows”.  I wasn’t so sure about mine as I was putting the dough together.  It was very similar to biscuit dough which is a bit dense and heavy.  Once I fried them in my little deep fryer (my new favorite appliance), they became puffy and light.  I split the batch in half and added cinnamon-sugar to one and honey to the other.  They were delicious.  It was very much like eating a doughnut.  They were dense like a cake doughnut, but with a slightly tough exterior like a fried yeast doughnut.  Since the recipe doesn’t call for vanilla, it will take on whatever flavor you add to them.  Both the cinnamon-sugar and honey were great.  I’m sure the next time I make these; I’ll add chocolate and/or coffee dipping sauces.


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable shortening
  • ΒΎ cup warm water (, plus more as needed)
  • peanut or canola oil (, for frying)
  • honey or cinnamon sugar (, for serving)
  1. Sift the dry ingredients together in a large mixing bowl. Add the shortening and water, work them in with your hands to make a soft, dough. Add more water, 1 teaspoon at a time, if the dough feels too dry. Gather the dough into a ball and wrap in plastic wrap. Put the dough in the refrigerator and chill for at least 1 hour so it will firm up a bit and be easier to roll and cut.
  2. Unwrap the ball of dough and put on a lightly floured surface, cut in half. With a floured rolling pin, roll each piece of dough into a circle, about 1/4-inch thickness. Using a paring knife or pizza cutter, cut the dough into triangle or square shapes.
  3. Heat 2-inches of oil to 375Β°F in a deep fryer, heavy skillet or deep pot over medium-high heat.
  4. Fry a few of the sopapillas at a time, keeping an eye on maintaining the oil temperature. As the sopapillas puff up and rise to the surface, flip them over with a slotted spoon or skimmer; about 2 minutes on each side. Carefully remove the sopapillas from the oil and drain on paper towels. Cool slightly. Serve hot with honey or cinnamon sugar.

Adapted from Ingrid Hoffman


One Comment Add yours

  1. Bonnie Eng says:

    They look crazy good!!!

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