Friar Balls

Friar Balls

Friar balls are a traditional sweet from Latin American and Spanish cuisine, also known as “buñuelos” in some places.  They are made with fried bread dough and are usually sprinkled with icing sugar.  They are delicious and popular during festivities and celebrations.


For the mass:

• 1 cup of milk

• 1/4 cup sugar

• 2 tablespoons instant yeast

• 4 cups of wheat flour

• 1/4 cup melted butter

• 2 eggs

• 1 teaspoon salt

• 1 Teaspoon vanilla extract

For the filling (optional):

• Caramel sauce

• Jam (fruit of choice)

• Custard cream

• Nutella

• Melted chocolate

Make sure you have all the ingredients on hand and heat the oil to the right temperature to fry the homemade friar balls evenly.


1. In a large bowl, heat the milk until it is warm, but not boiling.  Add the sugar and instant yeast.  Let sit for a few minutes until the yeast begins to bubble.

2. Add the eggs, melted butter, vanilla extract and salt to the yeast mixture.

3. Gradually add the wheat flour to the liquid mixture while stirring.  Continue mixing until you obtain a smooth and homogeneous dough.  You may need to adjust the amount of flour depending on the ambient humidity.

4. Cover the dough with a clean, damp cloth and let it rest in a warm place for about 1 hour or until it doubles in size.

5. After resting, take portions of dough and form balls the size of a large walnut.  If you want to fill them, make a small hole in the center of each ball and place a teaspoon of the filling you prefer (dulce de leche, jam, pastry cream, Nutella, etc.).  Then, close the dough around the filling and form it back into a ball.

6. Heat oil in a deep skillet over medium-high heat.  The amount of oil should be enough to completely submerge the friar balls.

7. Fry the friar balls in the hot oil until golden brown on all sides, about 2-3 minutes per side.  Make sure they are cooked inside;  you can break one to check.

8. Remove the friar balls from the hot oil and place them on absorbent paper to remove excess fat.

9. Sprinkle powdered sugar over the friar balls before serving.  You can serve them hot or at room temperature.

Enjoy your homemade friar balls!  Remember that this recipe is quite versatile, so feel free to experiment with different fillings and flavors.


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