How to Make Beignets

Yield: Makes about 36 beignets

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook: 2 hours 40 minutes

How to Make Beignets, New Orleans French Quarter-style. Surprisingly simple to make at home and absolute perfection! The best tips and tricks included!

Tessa's Recipe Rundown...

Taste: Simple sweet perfection. Feel free to add any flavors you want! A little drizzle of honey, caramel, or chocolate takes these to a whole new level, although that wouldn’t be very authentic. Who cares about authenticity if it’s delicious?
Texture: Golden and slightly crisp on the outside, ultra soft, fluffy, and pillowy on the inside.
Ease: Surprisingly easy, just requires some patience and clean up. Don’t let the dough or deep frying scare you away! I’ve included so many tips below.
Appearance: This just looks like what you’d be welcomed to heaven with, right?!
Pros: Bring New Orleans right to your kitchen.
Cons: So bad, but so good.
Would I make this again? Oh yeah.

How to make perfect New Orleans beignets! Easy recipe!

If you follow me on Instagram or Snapchat (@tessaarias), you know that I recently took a trip to New Orleans with my blogging BFF Ashley. As food bloggers, we were of course ridiculously excited about the food. As someone with a mega sweet tooth, I could not wait to try beignets from Cafe du Monde. I was worried they wouldn’t live up to all the hype but thankfully they did not disappoint. To me, The best food is usually the simplest. If you can’t make something simple taste good, then you’re doing it wrong.

I knew I had to attempt to recreate beginets at home and I was up for the challenge. I learned a lot and having Cafe du Monde as a comparison, I think I found a winning recipe! I’ve included tons of tips and tricks below, so if making homemade beignets scares you be sure to read through them!

How to make perfect New Orleans beignets! Easy recipe!

How to make perfect beignets!

How to Make Beignets – Recipe Tips

The Dough

The dough comes together quite easily, especially if you’re using a stand mixer. If you don’t have one, you can always knead by hand. Whatever you do, don’t skimp on the rising time. For most kitchens it’ll take at least 2 hours to properly double in size, possibly even 3 to 4 hours. You can also allow the dough to rise overnight in the fridge. The rising time is important because it helps create a beignet that is light, puffy, and pillowy once fried.

Make Ahead:

You can make the dough ahead of time and fry later when you’re ready! Simply cover and store the dough after forming it in the fridge for up to 4 days. It’ll rise in the fridge. Let it come to room temperature before using.

Shaping

On a lightly floured work surface, use a rolling pin to roll the dough out into a large rectangle about 1/4-inch thick. Use a pizza wheel, pastry cutter, or sharp knife to cut out squares of dough. For small beignets, cut 1 1/2-inch squares. For larger beignets more like Cafe du Monde’s, cut out 3-inch squares. Adjust the frying time with the size of the squares. Be sure to keep the rest of the dough covered while frying so it doesn’t dry out. Whatever you do, do not overwork the dough which will lead to tough beignets. Just be gentle!

Frying

In order to create beignets that are airy and fluffy inside and perfectly browned without being greasy on the outside, we’re using oil that’s slightly hotter than normal. Cafe du Monde apparently uses ultra hot oil at 380°F, but this recipe calls for oil at 360°F so as to keep everything safe.

It’s important to be accurate here! I always always always use a deep-fry thermometer for both safety and convenience. Be sure to watch the temperature the entire time and adjust your stove as necessary to maintain it.

This recipe uses vegetable oil because it’s something most people have on hand, but if you want to get really authentic try and find cottonseed oil! It has a high smoke point of 420°F and it’s what Cafe du Monde uses.

Powdered Sugar and Serving

The key here is to take the amount of powdered sugar you think you’ll need and double it!! You really can’t do too much powdered sugar here for a more traditional-style NOLA beignet! Also, the beginets are best served as fresh as possible. They start to harden and go stale even after just a few hours.

How to make perfect New Orleans beignets! Easy recipe!

How to make
Beignets

Recipe By Tessa Arias, Handle the Heat
Yield: Makes about 36 beignets
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook: 2 hours 40 minutes

Ingredients

3/4 cup lukewarm water
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon instant yeast
1 large egg, slightly beaten
1/2 cup evaporated milk
3 1/2 cups (15.75 ounces) bread flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Nonstick spray
Oil, for deep-frying
1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar

Directions

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook combine the water, sugar, yeast, egg, evaporated milk, and half the flour. Mix until combined. With the mixer on low speed, add the butter and then the remaining flour and salt and increase the speed to medium. Knead until the dough is smooth and just tacky.

Place the dough in an oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm place for about 2 hours. Don’t skimp on the rising time! To make ahead: store the dough in the fridge for up to 4 days. Let come to room temperature before using.

Preheat oil in a deep-fryer to 360°F. Place the confectioners’ sugar in a large bowl.

Roll the dough out to about 1/4-inch thickness and cut into squares. Deep-fry, flipping constantly, until they become a golden color on both sides, about 3 to 4 minutes total (depending on their size). The beignets should float to the surface very quickly after being added to the oil. If they don’t, they oil is not hot enough.

After beignets are fried, drain them for a few seconds on paper towels. Keep the freshly fried beignets warm in a 200° oven up to 30 minutes. Toss them into the bowl of confectioners’ sugar while still hot.

Adapted from The Food Network

About Tessa...

Tessa is a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. She loves to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. She's on a mission to make the world a more unapologetically DELICIOUS place. Tessa lives in Phoenix, Arizona.

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10 Responses to “How to Make Beignets”

  1. #
    June @ How to Philosophize with Cake — June 19, 2015 at 4:17 am

    I’d sure love to go to the Cafe du Monde someday! It sounds like quite the experience. The beignets look great, so fluffy and sweet 🙂

  2. #
    Patty K — June 19, 2015 at 9:30 am

    I can totally imagine inhaling all that powdered sugar while taking a bite! Yum!

  3. #
    Gaby — June 19, 2015 at 12:42 pm

    Well these are mouthwatering!! Beautiful!!

  4. #
    Cathy — June 19, 2015 at 10:18 pm

    My oldest Daughter and 2 of her besties were in New Orleans last week for 5 days. They went to that same Café du Monde and had some Beignets. She said it was like “Fried Heaven”. So good! I may have to try this recipe and see what she thinks. My husband works on a job site occasionally, twice already this year. Hopefully, the next time he’s down there and my work in Oklahoma slows down, I can join him for a few days and try some of the wonderful food of New Orleans. He always bring home tons of shrimp, crawfish and Boudan home.

  5. #
    Amanda Jonsson — June 20, 2015 at 10:24 am

    These look so good! I can’t wait to try them. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  6. #
    kearin @ the winsome baker — June 20, 2015 at 1:44 pm

    these look utterly fabulous!

  7. #
    Myrtice Stevens — June 22, 2015 at 5:05 am

    Made this, and it is super amazing. Hunger mouths out there, you guys definitely have to make it. Thanks to this detailed frying tips your beignets will be perfect. Trust me!

  8. #
    Veronica @ Big Blue House — July 2, 2015 at 6:56 pm

    New Orleans has some seriously good eats. We went with a big list of food spots we wanted to try… so big that we couldn’t fit every place into our week-long stay. But we went to Cafe du Monde every morning to start the day with beignets!! Thanks SO much for the recipe and detailed instructions – definitely going to give these a try!

  9. #
    Lauren — March 13, 2017 at 12:36 pm

    Can you Freeze these and refire them in the oven before serving them? I need to make a large quantity!

  10. #
    Ash — March 18, 2017 at 7:03 pm

    Is the butter supposed to be melted? Or softened?

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