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Fry Bread is a beloved tradition in the United States. Serve it up savory as Navajo Tacos or go the sweet side and serve it up with a little honey butter and powdered sugar. 

Indian fry bread stacked

This recipe comes from an Aunt who lived among a local Native American tribe for many, many years. There are so many fond memories of visiting as a child and enjoying the culture. She learned to make Fry Bread from friends in the tribe and passed the recipe down several years ago. Fry bread goes by many names around these parts, including Indian Fry Bread, Navajo Fry Bread, Navajo Tacos, and Scones. Yes, we realize that the word “scone” means something completely different everywhere else in the world, but around here, scones are fry bread. There’s even a whole chain restaurant devoted to it called Sconecutter.

The dough for this is quite simple, requiring very few ingredients. Don’t underestimate how delicious it is based on the simplicity. This fry bread is so delicious! It is most frequently served as either Navajo Tacos, with all your favorite taco ingredients, or as a dessert. Our favorite way to enjoy it as a dessert is to lather on some honey butter and dust it with powdered sugar. Yum! It’s crunch on the outside, and soft and fluffy on the inside.

  • What Toppings go on Navajo Tacos?

    You can add beans, meat, chopped lettuce, tomatoes, olives, shredded cheese, and sour cream. A lot of people use ground beef cooked up with a little taco seasoning. My favorite way to serve it up is with some shredded beef or shredded pork. It’s always awesome to add on some diced avocado.

  • Can Fry Bread be made ahead of time?

    Fry Bread is best served hot and out of the fryer. We do not recommend frying these up ahead of time. However, you can make your dough the night before, cover your bowl with plastic wrap, and let it rest in the fridge overnight rather than on the counter for 2 hours. In the morning, take out your bowl and leave it on the counter to get to room temperature. Then proceed with recipe. 

  • Storage Instructions:

    Indian Fry Bread can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days. 

a loaded navajo taco on indian fry bread

If you like this recipe, you may be interested in these other delicious bread recipes:

Watch the video below where Rachel will walk you through every step of this recipe. Sometimes it helps to have a visual, and we’ve always got you covered with our cooking show. You can find the complete collection of recipes on YouTube, Facebook Watch, or our Facebook Page, or right here on our website with their corresponding recipes.

a loaded navajo taco on indian fry bread
Fry Bread is a beloved tradition in the United States. Serve it up savory as Navajo Tacos or go the sweet side and serve it up with a little honey butter and powdered sugar.
Cook Time 2 hours
Ingredients
  • 4 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoons salt
  • 1 ½ tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 ½ or more cups hot water
  • 2-3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 quart vegetable oil for frying
Instructions
  • In a large mixing bowl, stir together the flour, salt, and baking powder. Gradually add in the water, mixing with a spoon or your hands until combined. It will be sticky.
  • Drizzle 2-3 tablespoons of oil over the dough to keep it from drying out. Cover and let rest 2 hours. This is not a risen dough so the dough will not rise, but it does need to rest.
  • Pull off golf ball sized pieces of dough and stretch or roll out until very thin, without ripping it. The thinner the better.
  • Pour enough vegetable oil into a pot to cover it with 2 inches of oil. Heat to 350 degrees F.
  • Working one at a time, fry the dough in the hot oil until golden brown, flipping halfway through. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate to drain.
Notes
Fried bread can be kept warm in the oven until there is enough to serve.

Nutrition

Calories: 183kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 196mg | Potassium: 196mg | Fiber: 1g | Calcium: 71mg | Iron: 2.1mg
Course: Bread
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Fry Bread
a loaded navajo taco on indian fry bread
Fry Bread is a beloved tradition in the United States. Serve it up savory as Navajo Tacos or go the sweet side and serve it up with a little honey butter and powdered sugar.
Cook Time 2 hours
Ingredients
  • 4 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoons salt
  • 1 ½ tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 ½ or more cups hot water
  • 2-3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 quart vegetable oil for frying
Instructions
  • In a large mixing bowl, stir together the flour, salt, and baking powder. Gradually add in the water, mixing with a spoon or your hands until combined. It will be sticky.
  • Drizzle 2-3 tablespoons of oil over the dough to keep it from drying out. Cover and let rest 2 hours. This is not a risen dough so the dough will not rise, but it does need to rest.
  • Pull off golf ball sized pieces of dough and stretch or roll out until very thin, without ripping it. The thinner the better.
  • Pour enough vegetable oil into a pot to cover it with 2 inches of oil. Heat to 350 degrees F.
  • Working one at a time, fry the dough in the hot oil until golden brown, flipping halfway through. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate to drain.
Notes
Fried bread can be kept warm in the oven until there is enough to serve.

Nutrition

Calories: 183kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 196mg | Potassium: 196mg | Fiber: 1g | Calcium: 71mg | Iron: 2.1mg
Course: Bread
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Fry Bread
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ViAnn
September 16, 2018 11:50 am

I grew up on Navajo Reservation an I have Navajo Foster sisters. I recommend using Blue Bird flour.

Sharlyn Harrall
August 8, 2020 9:27 pm
Reply to  ViAnn

Where do you buy blue bird flour? I have heard mention but can’t find it.

Dee
January 6, 2021 5:05 pm

Dee Basha’s carries it in flour sacks

Susan S
March 6, 2020 8:54 am

I was given a simalar recipe from a Kickapoo family. But the two tips that I was taught was to make a small hole in the middle and place a quarter of a raw potato in the oil. The potato will attract the loose flour to stop the burning smell.

Eric Gillespie
March 2, 2020 8:04 pm

I grew up in Ramah, NM very close to many Navajo Indians. I loved their fry bread and missed it so much since moving away from there 40 years ago. A couple of years ago I found this recipe and have used it repeatedly. As far as I’m concerned, it is a perfect Navajo Fry Bread recipe. My family gets very excited when I say I’m going to make fry bread. We often have it with Chile and make Navajo Tacos, but sometimes we just have as bread with whatever else we are having. It is especially good with butter… Read more »

Karra Harman
May 6, 2020 5:04 pm
Reply to  Eric Gillespie

We have a cabin up there! Im excited to make this recipe now knowing it will taste like the fry bread I love.

Susan
August 8, 2020 7:30 am
Reply to  Karra Harman

Would you be able to send me the recipe?

Malaa
November 5, 2017 2:33 am

Osyio! As someone who is Cherokee and Chickasaw and Blackfoot mixed I say Thank you for celebrating something that is part of our Native American heritage. My great Grandma mostly raised us and used to make a wonderful fry bread but sadly she forgot it before i was old enough to learn it. She did teach me how to make her biscuits and i was confused about how she could forget how to make her fry bread, but she said it was because it took longer and had to be set aside so she didn’t make much after moving back… Read more »

Dee E.
November 8, 2017 11:00 am
Reply to  Malaa

5 stars
This is great!! And your Grandma sounds wonderful. Tell her hello and I hope she is well. I have Cherokee roots myself, but all our traditions were put away because of the way others perceived Native Americans….so I do not know much of my ancestors, except names. I am definately trying this recipe. ?

Indian
December 17, 2017 10:40 am
Reply to  Malaa

This is a wonderful share, Malaa. I am actually going to go back and re-read your great grandmother’s words over and over. It seems like a great guide to keep in mind for the upcoming year. Much love to you both!

Sharon Harris Mackey
September 23, 2020 10:55 pm
Reply to  Indian

I whole heartedly agree. It touched me deeply and spurred memories of growing up with my grandma who was born in 1901. I needed that. I don’t want to forget anything of her knowledge, that she taught me and knowledge soaked in thru daily living. We must try to hang on to what we were fortunate to be shown.

Dominique
February 18, 2018 10:23 am
Reply to  Malaa

5 stars
Malaga and Rachel
What a wonderful memory. It’s curious that so many of our memories are tied to a particular good
I have perhaps a distant ancestor who was Choctow. My husband, however, has a strong Cherokee heritage. He has not been interested until later in life to learn about his heritage. I have encouraged him to become more aware. Whenever I can present him with something to prod his intetes, i am grateful for the opportunity. Often this is in the form of food.
Thank you Malls for your story
Thank you Rachel for sharing recipes

Little-Feather
March 20, 2018 8:10 pm
Reply to  Malaa

Malaa, that is fantastic….

Aimee D LeCompte
April 17, 2018 12:05 pm
Reply to  Malaa

I love your story. My mother’s family is from Louisiana and we are mostly Chitimacha which is a small tribe there and an offshoot of Cherokee. My grandmother and great grandmother taught me to cook from very young, my parents both died when I was four so my grandmother raised me. I can cook Cajun food from scratch as well as a few tribal dishes. I learned this fry bread as a child. It is a great treat we would have with my grandmother’s fig preserves. We grew alot of our own fruits and veggies, fresh produce is the best.

Regina
April 21, 2018 4:41 pm
Reply to  Malaa

Thank you for this wonderful story of your ancestors. I have just learnt something from this about living my life simply.

Sharon Harris Mackey
September 23, 2020 10:42 pm
Reply to  Malaa

Thank you for taking the story of your family; especially the women who shaped you in your young life. My grandmothers were both born in 1901, and lived long lives. We lived with gran Rosa. How I wish that I had soaked up every bit of knowledge that come forth from her! I strive to remember any bits and pieces of her knowledge and wisdom; handed down for generations in her culture on the remote Eastern shore of VA. What I did take away from my growing up with her was the greatest gift. Thank you for bringing this back… Read more »

Dianne Swanson
December 23, 2020 7:22 pm
Reply to  Malaa

What a fantastic story 🙂

Felicia Little
March 4, 2020 2:12 pm

This is a true Indian fry bread recipe. Other “fry bread” recipes contain yeast. Native Americans did not have yeast, and sometimes not even baking powder, it was made with flour, water and lard or fat. This is the way my mom and granny made it and it is how I make it.

Caddo
March 28, 2020 4:41 pm
Reply to  Felicia Little

I agree Felicia with your ingredients. Mom said her Grandma wouldn’t stretch the dough, but pat it between the flat side of your fists until flat. Then poke a hole in middle. She would use Lard and fry . It would be a good batch if air bubbles were coming up. Yumm is it good! And, of course if your really off the diet, fried potatoes and beans. Mom always laughs at us because we put butter on it after it was fried. My kids like it with powdered sugar.

Peggy
August 11, 2019 7:40 pm

We use to eat them with ham and pinto beans.

Karyl
June 8, 2019 6:56 pm

5 stars
Here in New Mexico we traditionally poke a hole in the center so that when you pop them down into the oil it flows through and cooks more evenly (also keeps them from turning into bowls. (Though bowls could come in handy…but they won’t brown quite as evenly)

Kathleen Berretta
June 13, 2018 11:33 pm

I didn’t realize until reading alot of the comments that this is something my Mom made when I was a little girl. She used to make her own bread and would take pieces off and deep fry them like in this recipe. Of course hers was actual bread dough, but the same idea. I used to put butter on it and eat it like that. And to top it off she made Rye Bread (without the seeds). OH does this bring back memories. I am definitely going to try this. And I am not American Indian. But I do love… Read more »

April 17, 2020 6:55 pm

5 stars
My parents grandparents made these often. We are some Cherokee ..
I rate it 5 stars.
My favorite is to dip in syrup and preserves…

JB
April 6, 2020 4:34 pm

5 stars
Made this for the first time. It was absolutely delicious. I didn’t realize the dough needed to rest for 2 hours, so ended up sticking it in the fridge overnight and frying it the next night. It was perfectly fine. So good and reminded me of our trips out west. Thanks for sharing!

October 17, 2020 12:45 pm
Reply to  JB

JB I didn’t realize that the dough was supposed to rest for two hours either. I made some Saturday afternoon, I made two with sour cream, salad , cheese, and craisins. The other two I spread grape jelly on them while it was still hot. They were delicious!!!

Kool
January 14, 2019 3:18 pm

3 stars
Im Navajo. This recipe is good except once the dough sets we all NEVER pour oil directly on the dough!!! You have to tear off a good piece off the dough,so you could shape it better and it makes flattening out easier. Then you place it in the heated oil.

Tammy
November 28, 2018 9:41 am

I used Gold Medal Bread flour they turned out amazing!

Robert
August 15, 2020 9:44 pm

My granddaughter loves tacos. We have taco Tuesday every week I am going to try this recipe. We will have a new twist on taco Tuesday. I think I will make chicken fry bread tacos. We always save the grease from making bacon. That grease makes great refried beans with a bit of cumin.

Rebecca
May 29, 2020 11:43 am

This sounds so simple, easy and good. i was wondering if you could use this for a pizza crust? I know someone who makes her own pizza crust with only flour salt and water. No baking powder or yeast but lets it rest a couple hours. Turns out crispy and good.

Jen
November 4, 2018 8:48 am

5 stars
If you want it to remain flat instead of bowl shaped tear a small slit it the center when you are forming the dough before frying. Make sure your oil is very hot. If the temp is too low the bread will be tough.

Leni Vetsch
February 22, 2019 3:24 pm
Reply to  Jen

If you tear the dough with your fingers, the hole will grow back together when frying. You should cut slits with a knife to prevent this and keep them flat.

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