This restaurant-style sopapilla recipe is easy to make at home with pantry ingredients and always a crowd fave. Sprinkle your sopapillas in powdered sugar or dip in cinnamon-sugar — up to you!
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil (or butter), room temperature
- 3/4 cup warm water
- oil, for frying (see notes below)
- powdered sugar or cinnamon sugar, for topping
- honey, for serving
- Make the dough. Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt in a large mixing bowl until combined. Use a pastry cutter or a fork to briefly cut the coconut oil into the dry ingredients mixture until combined. Gradually add in the warm water and stir the mixture with a spatula or wooden spoon until a rough dough begins to form.
- Knead and rest the dough. Using your hands, knead the dough in the mixing bowl for 2 minutes or until the dough is smooth, sprinkling on some extra flour if needed to prevent the dough from sticking. Form the dough into a ball. Then cover the mixing bowl with a damp towel or plastic wrap, and let the dough rest for 20 minutes.
- Roll out the dough. When the dough is ready, turn it out onto a floured surface. (At this point, go ahead and begin heating your oil, as directed in Step 4.) Use a rolling pin to roll the dough out evenly until it is about 1/4-inch thick. Then use a pizza slicer, pastry cutter or a knife to cut the the dough into 2 to 3-inch squares (or whatever shapes you prefer).
- Heat the oil. Meanwhile, just before you begin rolling out the dough, fill a large saucepan with 1.5 to 2 inches of oil. Heat over medium-high heat until the oil reaches 375°F, then reduce heat to medium (or whatever temperature is needed) to maintain that temperature, more or less.
- Fry the dough. Once the oil is hot, very carefully lay a dough square in the hot oil. It will sink for a moment then rise to the surface and will likely immediately bubble up. (If it doesn’t, just add a spoonful or two of hot oil on top of the dough, and it should bubble up within a few seconds.) Fry for 30-60 seconds, or until the bottom of the dough is lightly golden. Flip and cook on the other side until lightly golden. Then carefully transfer the sopapilla to a paper-towel-lined baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining dough squares. (I typically fry a batch of 3 at a time.)
- Sprinkle. Sprinkle the cooked sopapillas with powdered sugar or cinnamon sugar. (Or you can dip them in powdered sugar or cinnamon sugar.)
- Serve. Serve warm with honey and enjoy!
Oil for frying: Feel free to use any high-heat-tolerant oil for frying that you prefer, such as avocado oil, canola oil, coconut oil, or vegetable oil. I recommend measuring the temperature of the oil with a cooking thermometer. But if you do not have a thermometer, just dip the end of a wooden spoon into the oil. If lots of little bubbles begin to form around the wood and float up, the oil is ready to go. If there are no bubbles, it’s too cool. If it bubbles furiously, it’s too hot.
How to make cinnamon-sugar: Just whisk together 1/2 cup granulated sugar with 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon until combined.
Source: Recipe slightly adapted from Food.com.