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Sopapillas are a delicious fried dough from New Mexico. They are perfectly fried puffed dough and traditionally served with a drizzle of honey or a combination of cinnamon and sugar.

Sopapillas on a plate with honey.

I absolutely love all types of Mexican food. Everything from conchas, beef birria to carne asada tacos. New Mexico’s Mexican food is in its own category.

I went to New Mexico a few years ago and had a transcendent experience in Taos and Santa Fe–two cities that are truly magical. One of my favorite things I ate the entire trip were Sopapillas. I had them both in sweet context and savory (and I ate them alongside a plate of Chilaquiles).

Sopapillas on a plate with honey.

Ingredients You’ll Need for a Sopapillas

  • All-purpose flour.
  • Baking powder. This is going to activate and make these nice and fluffy and light.
  • Granulated sugar. Adding a touch of sweetness and crispness to the dough.
  • Kosher salt. With everything sweet, we need a hint of savory.
  • Honey. This is going to go inside the dough, as well as on the outside when serving.
  • Milk. Whole milk gives this dough a super soft and delicious texture.

For the rest of the ingredients, please see the recipe index card below!

Ingredients in small bowls for sopapillas.

How to Make Sopapillas with Honey

  1. Whisk together the dry ingredients. We’re using all-purpose flour, baking powder, sugar and salt.
  2. Make a well in the flour mixture.

3. Then pour in the honey and milk.

4. Stir until a dough forms.

5. Rest the dough for 20 minutes.

6. Choose your choice of fat. You can use canola oil, lard or shortening. Heat it in a cast iron skillet or medium pot until it reaches 300F.

7. Roll out the dough so that it’s 1/8-inch thick.

8. Cut the dough into squares.

9. Heat the oil further to 375 degrees F.

10. Drop the squares of dough into the hot oil.

11. Flip them after a minute.

12. Cook on the opposite side for another minute. And then transfer to the paper towels.

13. Eat with honey!

Sopapillas tossed with sugar and cinnamon.

Recipe Tip

Test a single sopapilla. I always do a test to make sure the oil is the right temperature. If the first one doesn’t puff up, it means it’s not rolled thin enough. A simple fix with the rest of them!

Sopapillas on a plate with honey.

Recipe FAQs

What to serve with Sopapillas?

If you’re serving them in a sweet context, I love mixing together a few tablespoons of granulated sugar with two teaspoons ground cinnamon and dusting them with this mixture right when they come out of the oil. OR you can serve them in a savory context alongside these Vegetarian Black Bean Enchiladas or Beef Tacos.

How to make sopapillas without shortening?

This recipe most notably has zero shortening. I tried a recipe with shortening and I didn’t love it; I found that it lacked flavor and I frankly NEVER cook with shortening if I don’t have to. Instead, I swapped in milk vs. water and found that it was delicious this way.

Sopapillas on a plate with honey.

More Latin-Inspired Desserts

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4.84 from 71 votes

Sopapillas Recipe

Prep: 40 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Resting time: 20 minutes
Total: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 18 sopapillas
New Mexico is a beautiful place and these sopapillas paired with honey are inspired by the ones from the Southwest.


  • 1 cast iron skillet or medium pot
  • 1 spider or strainer to help remove the sopapillas from the oil


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • Canola oil, peanut oil or lard, for frying


To Make the Dough:

  • In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Next, create a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the honey and whole milk.
  • Using a spoon or your hands, mix the dough together until it forms a sticky mass. Cover the bowl with a clean kitchen towel and allow the dough to rest for about 20 minutes.

To Fry the Sopapillas:

  • I know frying this is a bit of a bummer but I’ll say that with these it’s needed and worth it.
    In a cast iron skillet (or medium pot), add enough oil so it reaches 3-inches up the sides of the skillet/pot. Heat up your oil to around 300 degrees. (Right before we fry them off, we’ll heat it up even further.)
  • Lightly flour your work surface and rolling pin. If the dough is at all sticky (it shouldn’t be after it rested) feel free to sprinkle it with a bit of flour so it doesn’t adhere to the surface.
  • Dump the dough onto the counter and roll the dough into a thin (1/8-inch thick) square. (It doesn’t have to be a perfect square either, just do your best.) Cut the sopapillas into 4 x 3-inch rectangles. Again, the measurements don’t have to be exact, you can definitely eyeball this.
  • Before you fry them up, be sure to get your honey ready. Line a baking sheet or plate with a few layers of paper towels or clean kitchen towel. Heat the oil up again to 375 degrees F.
  • Drop the sopapillas in the hot oil, frying two to three at a time, for about a minute, flipping them over at the halfway point. (If they don’t puff up, they’ll still be tasty! But it may mean the dough isn’t rolled thin enough.)
  • They should be lightly golden brown—not too crispy. Transfer them to the bed of paper towels to drain. Repeat with the remaining sopapillas.
  • These taste best straight from the fryer to a plate to being consumed but if you want, you can keep the sopapillas warm in an 200 degree pre-heated oven while you fry up the rest.
  • Serve them alongside some honey and apricot preserves.


Tips and Tricks:
  • Test a single sopapilla. I always do a test to make sure the oil is the right temperature. If the first one doesn’t puff up, it means it’s not rolled thin enough. A simple fix with the rest of them!


Serving: 1g | Calories: 197kcal | Carbohydrates: 41.1g | Protein: 5.3g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 0.5g | Cholesterol: 3mg | Sodium: 791mg | Potassium: 66mg | Fiber: 1.1g | Sugar: 9.2g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Like this Recipe? Please Rate & comment below!

*This post was originally posted on May 13, 2015 but has since been republished with new photos and copy.

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Hi! I'm Adrianna and this is my cozy space on the internet that is super-charged by butter, flour and copious amounts of pasta. Stay awhile, will you!

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  1. 5 stars
    I was studying in Eastern Colorado at Phillips university years ago and after a night of drinking with friends, we would stop in a small family cafe to order sopapillas e leche. We would dunk them in the milk, SOOO Good! after returning to the East coast every time i inquire about SOPAPILLAS at “authentic Mexican Restaurants” the only thing I get is a strange look with a definite no. So, thanks for the recipe, now I can make them at home. (If people know about Beignets, how did they miss out on Sopapillas?) This recipe is the closest to those in the cafe.

  2. 1 star
    I’m from NM and curious to try recipe. Dough didn’t rise. It stayed small not stretchy, no puffy.