Churros are dough that is piped into hot oil, fried, and then rolled and coated in a cinnamon and sugar mixture. If you love churros, be sure to try my Churro Cookies!
If you have made homemade donuts, you will certainly want to make these churros. Churros are fried dough sticks with a crispy outside and soft and fluffy inside. Plus, like a cinnamon sugar donut, the fried dough is coated in cinnamon and sugar! I love the ridges you get from piping them into the oil from a star-shaped tip. And don’t forget to have some milk chocolate ganache available for dipping! (Caramel would be another great sauce to dip these in!) I will also show you how to make these in an air fryer!
There are two parts to this recipe–the topping and the dough.
Oil: Vegetable oil works fine for frying.
Topping: All you need is some cinnamon and sugar to coat the fried dough.
Dough: The dough is a warm dough made with a simple mixture of boiling water, sugar, oil, salt, and all-purpose flour.
Heating the Oil
The first thing to do in this recipe is to heat up the oil. It’s important to have a candy thermometer handy to make sure the oil reaches a temperature of 365°F before frying the dough. Add about 2 inches of oil into a large deep pot over medium-high heat. As the oil is heating, whisk together the cinnamon and sugar on a shallow plate and get the churro batter made.
How to Make Churro Batter
To make the batter, you do need to boil the water with sugar, oil, and salt. The flour will be added to the boiling water to create the choux dough that is commonly used when making churros.
After the water, sugar, oil, and salt mixture have come to a boil, remove it from the heat. Use a rubber spatula to mix in the flour. Continue stirring until smooth or until just a few lumps are remaining. The batter will be warm, so be sure to double bag it before piping it into the hot oil.
How to Make Churros
With the batter ready, the oil hot (365°F), and the cinnamon and sugar mix on a plate, you are ready to make the churros! First, get your star tip (I used an #827 tip) and place it in a piping bag that has about 1 inch of the end cut off. This leaves room for the star tip or any tip you are using. Make sure no plastic is covering the tines of the star tip.
Next, add the warm batter to a second piping bag. Make a small clip off the end of this bag, but not so small it will interfere with how the batter comes out of the tip. Place the batter bag into the bag with the tip.
THIS IS CALLED THE DOUBLE-BAGGING METHOD. You can see more on that here. You do not have to double bag the churro dough, it’s just a cleaner and safer option when using a hot batter.
Pipe out a 5-inch strip of dough into the hot oil, cutting it off with kitchen scissors. You could add a couple more strips of the dough, but I would not recommend adding more than three. If you overcrowd the pot, the dough strips could stick together.
Fry the dough for 3-4 minutes, or until golden brown, turning occasionally. Use a slotted spoon or metal tongs to remove the fried dough from the oil and place it on a paper towel to drain. While still warm, roll the fried dough into the cinnamon and sugar mixture.
Before repeating with the rest of the dough, make sure the oil is close to 365°F. Dropping beautiful dough into a too-hot oil or a too-cold oil can be frustrating and not give you the best results. I found that the best way to ensure your oil stayed at a consistent 365°F was to have a thermometer right in the oil at all times.
Can I Make Churros Without a Piping Bag or Tip?
Yes! If you don’t have piping bags, just use a couple of sealable plastic baggies with corners cut. You can actually even cut a triangle into the corner of the plastic bag to create more texture, similar to a star tip. Then just pipe the dough into the oil as instructed. You won’t get the crispy ridges you would get from using an actual star tip, but they will still taste the same!
How to Make Churros in an Air Fryer
If you don’t want to fry the churros in oil, it’s easy to get the same great flavors from an air fryer. To make churros in an air fryer:
- First, line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spray the parchment with nonstick cooking spray.
- Next, pipe the dough onto the lined baking sheet.
- Refrigerate the piped dough for an hour.
- When ready, spray the basket of your air fryer with nonstick cooking spray (or line with parchment paper if your machine doesn’t allow the nonstick spray)
- Working in batches, carefully transfer the churros to the basket of your air fryer, leaving plenty of space in between each.
- Air fry the churros at 375°F for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown.
Looking for More Breakfast Treats?
Churros are dough that is piped into hot oil, fried, and then rolled and coated in a cinnamon and sugar mixture.
- 2 quarts vegetable oil
- ½ cup (100g) granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 cup (250g) water
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup (125g) all-purpose flour
In a large deep pot over medium-high heat, add 2 inches of vegetable oil. Heat oil to 365°F.
While oil is heating prepare the topping and batter.
On a shallow plate add cinnamon and sugar; whisk together to combine. Set aside.
In a small saucepan over medium heat add water, sugar, oil, and salt. Mix well and bring to a boil.
Remove from heat and use a rubber spatula to mix in flour until the batter comes together with very few lumps remaining.
Because the batter is still very warm you will want to use two piping bags. To do that, take out the first piping bag, clip the end off and place in your tip so that it is securely resting in the bag.
Add the batter to the second piping bag and clip a small amount off the tip of the bag. (Make sure you cut an opening that is slightly bigger than the size of the ¼ tip you will be using. If the opening is not large enough the pastry bag could interfere with how to batter comes out of the tip.)
Place the batter bag into the bag with the tip.
Carefully pipe a 5-inch strip of dough into the hot oil, using the scissors to snip off the dough at the end of the strip. Repeat 2-3 more times, being careful not to overcrowd the pan. (I would not recommend frying more than three at a time to avoid sticking together.) Monitor the temp of the oil; you want the oil to stay as close to 365°F as possible.
Fry until golden brown (about 3-4 minutes) turning occasionally. With a slotted spoon or metal tongs, remove from the oil and place on a paper towel to drain.
While still hot, roll the churro into the cinnamon and sugar mixture. Repeat with the remaining churros.