Sunday, December 11, 2011

How to Make Mexican Buñuelos / Cómo Hacer Buñuelos Mexicanos

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With Christmas around the corner, the streets next to the markets in México start setting up makeshift wooden stands to sell all kinds of Holiday crafts for home decorations, Christmas Trees and The Nativity setting. A large area is dedicated to sell candies, small oranges or apples and diverse types of treats to fill the piñata. There are also food vendors that provide the regular hot atole and tamales to warm you up while you go on your day of festive shopping. But there is always at least one stand selling the Traditional Buñuelos.These light, crispy and sweet round disc are sprinkled with sugar or bathed in piloncillo syrup.
These Buñuelos are different from the recipe that originally was brought to México by the Spaniards. In the Southern States of México, like in Tabasco,cooks still make a very similar version of the Spanish Buñuelos, and you can see the recipe in my friend Flavio’s Blog.
This is the basic and simple way to make a treat that I am sure many Mexicans living abroad remember their grandmothers, aunts or mothers prepare this time of the year. If you have never made them, do not be afraid, the dough is so easy to manage, and you can prepare it a day in advance and refrigerate it. I have even frozen it for a couple of days. Then bring back to room temperature before forming the Buñuelos.
You can also find the Christmas Punch recipe HERE.

Ingredients for 12 Buñuelos

  • 2 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon of butter (melted and already cool)
  • About 3/4 cup of warm water *
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence **
  • About 2 cups of vegetable oil to fry the Buñuelos
  • Sugar to sprinkle

*Anise tea is very often used instead of plain water and vanilla lending a sweet aroma to the buñuelos. To make anise tea, place 1 1/2 cup of water in a small saucepan. Bring the water to a boil, add the anise seeds and set aside to cool. Strain and use the amount needed to make dough.
** You can also use orange liqueur or essence instead of vanilla.

Piloncillo Syrup for buñuelos:

  • 3 1/2 cups of water
  • 1 large piloncillo stick (about 12 oz.)
  • 1 stick of cinnamon
  • 6 guayabas chopped or cut in quarters(guavas)
  • 1/3 teaspoon  anise seed
  • 1/4 of an orange peel
    Buñuelos Syrup Jarabe

Place the 1 cup of water and the piloncillo in a medium size saucepan. Heat over medium high heat until the piloncillo disolves and it looks like liquid caramel.

Carefully add the rest of the water, cinnamon stick, guavas, aniseed and orange peel and bring to a boil. Cook for about 6 minutes, stir and boil for 4 more minutes. Set aside to use as topping for the buñuelos.
If you want a thicker consistency, simmer for a longer period of time until desired thickness.
The syrup keeps well refrigerated for up to 1 week. Serve warm or at room temperature.

1. In a large bowl mix flour, baking powder, 1 Tablespoon of sugar and 1/2 teaspoon of salt.
2. Form a well in the center and add the egg, melted butter and vanilla. Mix until mixture resembles a coarse meal. Slowly add the water a tablespoon at a time, mixing and kneading until you have a soft and smooth dough. This will take less than 5 minutes. Cover the dough with a kitchen towel and let it rest for 30 minutes.

3. While the dough is resting prepare your working area with a rolling pin, a large dish with paper towel or open paper bags, extra flour for rolling the circles, a large frying pan with the vegetable oil ready for the moment you start frying the Buñuelos.
4. Divide the dough in 12 small balls and cover. Heat 3/4 inch of oil the large frying pan.
5. Place one of the dough balls in your already floured working surface and stretch with your rolling pin. Roll out each ball to forma a circle as thin as possible without breaking the dough.

6. To give that extra stretching to the Buñuelo, place on the inverted bowl or clay pot covered with the pastry towel and pull the edges very gentle. The Buñuelo should be thin almost transparent. Before cooking, some people like to place all the already  former buñuelos over a clean tablecloth, in a large table, making sure they don't touch each other. This step will dry the dough, the buñuelos will be even crispier, and absorb less oil while cooking. 

7. Fry the buñuelos in very hot oil until they are golden and crispy. This step will take a few seconds. Place the buñuelos on plate covered with paper towels to drain the excess oil. Serve warm or at room temperature and sprinkle with sugar.  If you do not sprinkle the sugar right away they can still be nice and crispy for another day and just add the sugar at serving time. If you prefer to serve them warm, place them in you oven in a low setting for 5 minutes.   Now, we need some hot chocolate to go alone with the buñuelos.
I hope you make them... If you do, please come back to let me know your experience.

Provecho y... ¡Felices Fiestas!



  1. I'll take one for dessert tonight, Mely. ♥ them!

  2. That is very similar to Navajo fry bread! It is SO yummy, fills the tummy and people love it! :)

  3. Clasiquísimo de las posadas

    yo hago la receta de los flojos con tortillas de harina, jejee

    solo le falto la miel de piloncillo y su buen champurrado y yummi!

  4. Ay Mely, como se me antojaron esos buñuelos! Mi mamá los preparaba con miel de piloncillo y volaban! Que buenos recuerdos trajiste a mi mente, gracias.
    Te mando un beso.

  5. Mely, how delicious they look. I have to try these out. I hope to print the recipe tomorrow and try them out. If I do I'll let you know. Just stopped by to wish you Happy Holidays.
    Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you and yours. Take care and enjoy.

  6. Mely,
    gracias por poner el link.
    Los buñuelos me encantan con canela y azucar pero también con miel de piloncillo y tocojote así como los hacen en el DF.

    Un abrazo querida amiga!

  7. Qué rico Mely qué trabajal!!! wow!!!
    Oye Mely, vengo a buscar cuántas gotas de cuajo se necesitan para hacer queso... tú sabes? voy a buscar en tu recetita!!
    Saludos amiga
    gracias por todo

  8. Hola Pily,

    Eso va a depender del tipo o marca de cuajo que uses. Los que venden en las tiendas especializadas por lo regular dicen cuanto se necesita por gallon. Yo compro uno portuges y uso 20 gotas diluidas en 1/4 taza de agua, para 1 galon de leche.

    Saludos amiga.


  9. Mely,
    It looks delicious, similar to poori, but crispy. Sure I will try this one. Yesterday I was trying to comment on the blog, it was not showing. Now I was was able to comment.

  10. Hi, Swathi,

    Sorry you couldn't comment yesterday. The webpage was not live temporary.

    And, yes now that you mention it. Buñuelos are similar to poori.

    Be good!


  11. My brother used to make the bachelor's version; he'd fry a flour tortilla and sprinkle it with cinnamon sugar. They weren't half bad.

  12. @ Kirby

    I had seen those served at Tex-Mex restaurant but had never tried. But it sounds like a good fast and easy fix to fulfill your cravings.



  13. Es del que venden en la veterinaria, supongo que es más fuerte... tengo que calcular verdad? porque dá las cantidades para 100 litros de leche ;D
    Saludos amiga y gracias

  14. Thank you so much for posting this recipe. I was looking for a recipe and could not find one I liked!
    Merry Christmas!!

  15. Que delicia de buñuelos Mely, me llevo tu receta mil gracias por compartirla con nosotros me encantan los buñuelos deliciosos bañados con miel de guayaba, saludos cariñosos.

  16. Chamacona, ¿cómo sabes que los buñuelos son mi postre favorito?, qué rico.
    Cada Navidad decía que iba a preparar buñuelos y siempre siempre le daba la vuelta. Ya he dejado decirlo, hay un montón de carga culposa por todo el aceite que sé que "chupan".
    En esta época es un placer comerlos en Oaxaca y luego quebrar el tepalcate en el que te lo sirven ¿Los has comido ahi?
    Un beso querida

  17. Thanks for sharing. I just love seeing local and family recipes. I just wish I could travel the world trying it first hand.

  18. Hi Mely,
    I remember strolling through the market and having a wonderful Bunuelos. Your recipe looks awesome and brings back wonderful memories. Hope you are having a great week and thanks so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  19. Mmmm me encantan los buñuelos, sólo estoy esperando las vacaciones para deleitar a mi familia!

  20. Mely, Wonderful! Que delicia se ven estos buñuelos. Sabes que en Argentina tenemos algo parecido se llama torta frita. Como siempre tu step by step fotos son imperdibles. Te deseo una hermosa Navidad para ti y tu familia :)

    Abrazos de Oso <3

  21. Que lindos buñuelos! nunca los hice, ahora con tu receta ya me animo

  22. Love these bunuelos and all fried breads like them! You can't beat the taste and texture - love that crunch! Happy Holidays!

  23. Looks like a great local treat! Love how light it is. My grandma would make something very similar to this. She would use grape molasses in its syrup.

  24. Hola Carmen,

    No he comido los Buñuelos asi, pero se me hace muy intresante que los pongan en el tepalcate.


    @ My Cooking time,

    Gracias por pasar disfruta a la familia en estas vacaciones.

    @ Hola Aldi,

    Que gusto verte por aqui. Feliz Navidad para ti tambien.

    @ Querida Gaby, Se que te saldran buenisimos.

    Saludos y felices fiestas.


  25. Thanks Lyndsey. That is also one of my dreams. Have a wonderful time this holidays.

    @ Hi, MizHelen.
    Thanks for the invitation. It is always fun to stop by Full Plate Thursday. Happy Holiday to you too.

    @ mkskit,

    Thanks for your comment. Yes, Buñuelos are so light and crispy. Happy Holidays!

    @ Hello Zerrin,

    I love to know you are doing fine. Best wished to you and your family.


  26. Mely, vengo para ademas de agradecer tus comentarios en mi blog, para desearte una muy feliz navidad y un año nuevo lleno de alegría, paz y salud para ti y toda tu familia. Recibe un fuerte abrazo de mi parte.

  27. Gracias Prieta, Feliz Navidad para ti tambien.

    Un fuerte abrazo.


  28. Q ricos Mely, yo tenía toda la intención de prepararlos pero me regalaron una caja así que con esos fueron suficientes pero guardo tu receta.


  29. Im m akig bunueols this Christma Season to raise money. I made my first batch yesterday and I didnt like them at all I took someones advice to use crisco in the recipe and whole wheat flour yucky Im giving those away to my brother and law haha! I am trying your recipe tomorrow I think I will have much better luck ..

    1. Hello Bianca,

      Just make sure to let the dough rest for at least 30 minutes before rolling the buñuelos. This resting period helps develop the gluten to stretch the dough really thin.

      Good luck!


  30. Thanks for sharing, I just linked from my Blog (in German) to this article so that folks over there can enjoy true mexican christmas food too.

  31. Thank you so much! I made this last night and it was so gooood!

    1. Hello Mariana Ilco,

      Thanks to you for coming back to leave a comment on this recipe. Happy New Year!!


  32. Hello Mely,
    Trying your recipe today very similar to my grandmothers I just could never figure out the right proportions she and my mom measure by sight and I have never been able to nail it down by myself. The only real difference is they use lard and not butter.... my dough is resting as i type i will let you know how they turn out its the taste that counts and i have a very critical crowd my kids and my mom are going to be eating these

  33. Thank you for your comment Lourdes, somehow I erased but here it goes again.

    Araceli Figueroa has left a new comment on your post "How to Make Mexican Buñuelos/Como hacer Buñuelos M...":

    Thank u so much for the recipe! It was my first time making them and they came out great! My hubby loved them!

  34. This my first time making buñuelos, and this recipe was so successful! They came out a little on the fluffy side which i really liked! I couldn't find any guavas so I used mango for the syrup.... it's so good, but I'll definitely make more of an effort to find guavas next time. That flavor combination just sounds fantastic!
    These came out better than my grandmother's...... which says alot! THANKS!

    1. Hello Robert Cardwell,
      Thank you for taking the time to comment on the recipe. You can buy canned guavas at Latin stores or in our Amazon Store.

      They will work fine for this recipe or other desserts.

      Happy cooking!

  35. Mely, hasta que se me hará preparar tus buñuelos con este friecito, ahorita está reposando la masa, podría llevarme tu receta a mi blog para tenerla como favorita? claro, dando crédito a Mexico in my Kitchen, cómo ves?

  36. Hi Mely, and everyone out there, just finished making 30 bunuelos! OH MY GOODNESS!!! So much work! WOW, now I hope I don't eat them all! LOL.... they're really good, and made that syrup too, just lovely-thank you so much Mely for giving us these wonderful recipe that we can all enjoy-FELIZ ANO NUEVO

    1. Thank you Dolores for your kind comment. But now, I also want some too. :)

    2. Felíz Año Nuevo para ti tambien!

  37. Cargo esta tradicion adelante para mi querida madrecita....cada ano, la dia antes del ano nuevo, preparabamos los bunuelos, sabanas limpias y toallas de cocina cubriendo toda mesa. Mtocaba siempre colocar los bunuelos en orden y tambien darselos a mama para friarlos. A las dos horas antes del ano nuevo, venian tocando a la puerta para comparsen unas docenas de bunuelos para festejar el ano nuevo. Aun sigo pero no para venta, solo para compartir. Gracias por darme la oportunidad para compartir mi historia.

    1. Hola angelica,

      Que bonitos recuerdos dee tu madre, ojala tus hijos y tu tengan muchos recuerdos como estos.

      Gracias por tomar el tiempo de escribir.


  38. That's it! Will you PLEASE move to Santa Barbara, California USA? All your recipes are just like my moms' You are an ANGELica.

  39. My daughter is having her Multi-Cultural Feast in her 4th grade class and she chose to make Buneulos. This was always a Christmas and New Years tradition in our house with Abuelitas Hot Cocoa. We sprinkled ours with a cinnamon and sugar so good.
    Question: I would like to make these half the size of should fry up the same right?

    1. Yes, sure just be careful to turn when they are light golden.
      Happy Cooking!

  40. I came across this recipe a few years ago. I tested the recipe on Christmas Day and the buñuelos turned out delicious! It was my first time ever making buñuelos and it was a success! Unfortunately I didn't bookmark the recipe. This past Christmas I had the craving for these again but had no luck finding the recipe. Until now. I can't believe I accidentally stumbled accross this without even looking for it! Thank you so much for sharing your recipe!

  41. Thank you for this recipe I will be making this for the New Years! :) I do have one question…how do you integrate the Guava? Ive never cooked with Guava.

    Thank you so much

    1. Hello Gloria,

      Some people use small guavas, and use them whole since, they will cook in the syrup and they will become soft and slightly smaller. But you can cut them in bite size pieces.

      Happy cooking!

  42. I just made these following the recipe but I added orange zest and fresh orange juice they're AWESOME


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