Buñuelos ( Mexican Fritters)

Buñuelos are quick-fried fritter discs topped with brown sugar syrup or cinnamon sugar. They are round, thin, crispy, and delicious, and are great anytime!


In Oaxaca, Mexico, New Year's Eve Buñuelos are served on thin china plates that must be smashed against the wall or on the ground while making a wish for the new year. In Latin America, buñuelos are seen as a symbol of good luck. 

Crunchy Goodness!
This is my Mother's recipe, but there are many variations of buñuelos. Some buñuelos are more like thick puffy fritters, some round soft cinnamon balls, and some use cinnamon sugar, powdered sugar, or brown sugar syrups as a topping. All variations are delicious but my Mom's recipe...cinnamon sugar + warm syrup is what I prefer during the Christmas holidays.

How to Make Mexican Buñuelos
  • Combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix in melted butter. 
  • Add water a little at a time to make a soft dough. 
  • Knead for 8 minutes, or until dough is smooth and elastic, then form 9 dough balls.
  • Place dough balls in a bowl, and cover for 30 minutes.

On a lightly floured cutting board, with a rolling pin, roll out round thin sheets of dough balls as you would tortillas.
Fry at 350 degrees F temperature, for about 1 minute on each side. Place each buñuelo on a paper towel-lined plate to drain.

Combine the cinnamon and sugar in a plate or bowl. Sprinkle and rub the cinnamon sugar onto both sides of each buñuelo while still warm. Serve buñuelos warm or at room temperature, then top with syrup. 

How to make Brown Sugar Syrup (Miel) for Buñuelos

  • 2 cups light Brown Sugar
  • 2 cups of water
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange.
  • 2 cinnamon sticks

Combine all ingredients in a heavy saucepan. Stir over medium heat until brown sugar dissolves, about 5 minutes. Increase heat and boil until the syrup thickens enough to coat the spoon thinly, about 20 minutes. Strain syrup into a bowl. Cover and refrigerate. Re-warm before using.

What is Piloncillo?

Piloncillo is a raw form of pure cane sugar that is commonly used in Mexican cooking and is sometimes referred to as Mexican brown sugar.

Piloncillo has flavors ranging from slightly burnt caramel to rum notes. It often has a hint of smokiness, too. 

How to Make Piloncillo Syrup for Buñuelos

  • 3 1/2 cups of plain water
  • 1/2 teaspoon of anise seed
  • 1/2 teaspoon of orange peel, grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon of lemon peel, grated
  • 12 ounces of piloncillo,  coarsely chopped
  • 1 1/2 sticks of cinnamon or 1/2 a teaspoon of cinnamon powder

Place the 1 cup of water in a medium-sized saucepan with the piloncillo and bring it to medium-high heat until you have a liquid caramel consistency.

Add the rest of the piloncillo syrup ingredients gradually, including the rest of the water, and bring the mixture to a boil. 

Continue mixing and cooking the syrup for about 10 minutes then set aside. (the longer you leave it, the thicker it’ll be) Strain the syrup into a bowl, cover, and refrigerate. Re-warm syrup before serving

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Storing Buñuelos

Simply stack them on a plate and cover them loosely with a paper towel. It will last on the countertop for up to 3 days.


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