Buñuelos de Viento are sweet fried Mexican fritters, with a light and crisp texture, dusted in cinnamon-sugar. This Mexican treat is fun and easy to make, and tastes like heaven!
Why You’ll Love These Buñuelos de Viento
Have you ever eaten buñuelos de viento? These pretty little fritters are more than just desserts; they are a festive favorite that’s perfect for every occasion! Here’s why:
- Crispy, Fluffy Texture: The name “buñuelos de viento” means fritters of the wind, and once you bite into their airy, fluffy goodness you’ll see why.
- Sweet and Light: These pastries are a delicious sweet treat, but they’re not too rich. You won’t be able to resist them with their perfectly light and crisp bite and sweet cinnamon-sugar coating.
- Traditional Favorite: There’s a reason this recipe is so beloved in Mexico. It’s an old-fashioned fried pastry that is basically heaven on a plate.
- Easy to Make: Don’t be intimidated by the look of buñuelos de viento. They may be gorgeous, but they’re not hard to make at all. Honestly, the hardest part is waiting for them to cool enough to be able to take that first bite!
What Are Buñuelos de Viento?
Before we get lost in fluffy clouds of yumminess, let’s talk about what these classic pastries are. There are a few different recipes out there that are similarly named, but these Mexican buñuelos de viento are rosette – or snowflake – shaped pastries (there are other shapes, too, but those are the main shapes) that are fried in oil, and often sprinkled with cinnamon-sugar afterward.
The secret to their pretty shape is the metal mold used to make them (that’s why these treats are also sometimes called buñuelos de molde). They’re a must-have for the holiday season, but also tend to show up at any special event. Utterly light and crispy, they are sort of similar to funnel cakes, and a bit like churros, but they have their own unique texture and flavor. Basically, they’re amazing, you’re gonna love them, let’s eat!
The Ingredients You’ll Need
You probably already have all the ingredients on hand to make these tasty treats. For full ingredient amounts and directions, scroll to the printable recipe card at the bottom of this post.
For the Cinnamon Sugar
- Sugar: You will want to use regular granulated sugar.
- Cinnamon: Use a good-quality ground cinnamon, and be sure to check the expiration date! Out-of-date spices can often be bitter or bland.
For the Buñuelos
- Oil: Vegetable oil or canola oil, for frying. Please don’t use olive oil or coconut oil for this!
- Flour: All-purpose flour.
- Baking Powder: Make sure you use baking powder, not baking soda.
- Sugar: Again, you’ll want granulated sugar.
- Egg: A large, whole egg. Whisk the egg before adding it to your mixture.
- Vanilla: Pure vanilla extract gives the best flavor.
- Butter: Unsalted butter, melted.
- Milk: Whole milk.
How to Make Buñuelos de Viento
Ready to get started making your own buñuelos de viento? It’s so easy, and honestly, it’s pretty fun. Let’s do this!
- Make the Cinnamon Sugar. Whisk the granulated sugar, ground cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.
- Make the Batter. Whisk the dry ingredients in a medium-sized bowl, and then add the wet ingredients. Stir the mixture until you get a smooth, runny batter.
- Heat the Mold. Dip the metal end of the buñuelo mold into the hot oil for 10 seconds.
- Make a Buñuelo. Dip the hot metal end of the mold into the batter, shake off any excess, and then dip it into the oil to fry for 10 to 15 seconds. Twirl the mold so that the buñuelo loosens and falls off into the batter, and fry it for a few seconds longer until golden.
- Add Cinnamon Sugar. Carefully remove the buñuelos from the oil using a slotted spoon, and toss them in cinnamon sugar. Enjoy!
Helpful Tips and Tricks
Old-fashioned recipes like this are a joy to make, and everyone is always excited to munch their fair share of the crispy, crunchy results. But before you start frying, be sure to check out these helpful tips to guarantee success:
- Different Size Molds: You can buy different molds for your buñuelos de viento. Most Mexican molds are larger, about five inches across, while European molds tend to be a bit smaller – about three inches across. If you use a big mold, you’ll get fewer buñuelos. If you use a smaller mold, you’ll get more buñuelos.
- Drying the Mold: After you heat the mold in the hot oil, be sure to tap it dry on clean paper towels or a clean kitchen towel. If you don’t, it will be too oily to pick up the batter.
- Releasing the Buñuelo from the Mold: After frying for 10 to 15 seconds, the buñuelo should slip off of the mold into the oil. If it sticks a little, you can use a fork or toothpick to help it detach.
- Hollow Side Down: Drain these little guys with the hollow side down, so that the oil can drain out. If you drain them hollow side up, the oil will sit in the creases and absorb into the buñuelo.
- Orange Zest, Brandy, and More: My simple recipe uses just vanilla for flavoring, but you could also add ingredients like orange zest, a spoonful of brandy (omit the vanilla if you do this), etc.
How to Store and Reheat Buñuelos de Viento
These pretty little treats have a way of disappearing like, well, the wind! But if you find that you have a few leftovers, don’t fret – they store suprisingly well. In fact, they’re often given as gifts because they will stay crispy for a few days.
To store them, keep them in an airtight container or a tightly-sealed plastic or cellophane bag. Don’t put them in the fridge. Room temperature is best. Then, enjoy them as they are, or bake them at about 350°F for a few minutes to serve them warm.
Can I Freeze These?
Sure! In fact, you may want to make extras just to freeze for later. Make sure you cool them down completely before freezing them. I recommend wrapping each one individually (use plastic wrap or foil), and then freezing them all in a big zip-top bag. Thaw before reheating or serving.
More Tasty Latin Desserts
- Best Classic Flan
- Mazapan Candy
- Dulce de Leche Cake
- Creamy Queso Flan
- Camote con Dulce
- Orejas (Palmiers)
Buñuelos de Viento
For the Cinnamon Sugar:
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
For the Buñuelos:
- 3 to 4 cups vegetable oil, for frying
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 large egg, whisked
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
- ½ cup whole milk
- Whisk the granulated sugar, ground cinnamon, and salt in a medium-sized bowl until well combined. The bowl needs to be large enough to fit 1-2 buñuelos inside. Set it aside.
- Pour the oil into a medium-sized pot. Place it over medium-high heat. Bring it up to 350°F. (I highly recommend using a candy thermometer clipped to your pot to ensure your oil stays at the correct temp while frying.)
- While the oil heats up, whisk to combine the flour, baking powder, and granulated sugar in a medium-sized bowl until well combined. Add the egg, vanilla extract, melted butter, and milk. Stir the mixture until you get a smooth, runny batter. If it's too dry, add another tablespoon of milk at a time until it reaches the right consistency.
- Dip the metal end of the mold into the hot oil for 10 seconds. Then dry the mold on a paper towel. (Don't skip this step otherwise the batter will stick to the mold. Repeat this step for every buñuelo.)
- Dip the hot metal end of the buñuelos mold into the batter until it's completely covered. Quickly shake off any excess batter. Immediately dip it into the oil. Let it fry for 10-15 seconds. Gently twirl the mold using the handle to begin loosening the buñuelo. Once it releases, let the buñuelo fry for another 10-15 seconds or until golden. Repeat for all the batter.
- Carefully remove the buñuelos from the oil using a slotted spoon or kitchen tongs. Place them in the bowl of cinnamon sugar. Toss until completely covered. Serve and enjoy.
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