5 Ingredients or Fewer

Navajo Fry bread

February  9, 2015
0 Ratings
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

A classic native american treat! This version is the Navajo Version, but fry bread itself varies by tribe and even varies within the tribe. Mine is just a standard and simple take. —myknifeswork

What You'll Need
  • 2 1/2 cups All purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon Baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 cups oil for frying
  1. Combine all the dry ingredients in a bowl or mixer. Mix all together until it is all evenly distributed throughout.
  2. Slowly add the warm water a little at a time while kneading by hand or using an electric mixer fitted with the hook attachment. * With hand: Knead the dough 30-40 times gently turning to mix. Knead until the water is fully incorporated and dough in slightly smooth and sticky. * With Mixer: Mix the dough with an electric mixer on low speed while slowly adding the water. Mix on low for 5-10 minutes.
  3. Once it is all mixed, cover with saran wrap or a clean kitchen towel and let rest for 15-20 minutes. Meanwhile, heat the frying oil in a frying pan to about 350 degrees F.
  4. Divide dough into recipes yield (4 or 8). Roll or shape dough out into a round form about a ¼ inch in thickness. (*think mini pizza)
  5. Gently place dough into oil and cook until golden brown on the edge and flip to cook on the other side.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • myknifeswork
  • matt
  • ChefEagle

5 Reviews

LYNDA October 29, 2017
I live in No. Utah. I was taught one Fry Bread recipe in 1993 by a young married Navajo girl ready to have her first child. About all I can remember is the recipe contained 2 of each ingredient whether it was cups, teaspoons, tablespoons, etc. She also placed bricks on either side of the gas burner upon her stove, placed a small square grate atop the bricks and frid them over the open flame. She spoke fluent Navajo and had an infant flat board carrier she said her baby would spend his first year in. She was exceptionally traditional. It was so very interesting to me. Well, more to the point, I'll try this recipe hoping I get it right. I have bricks and a gas stove. I believe traditionally the First Nation people did not fry in oil and I feel it's still healthier today. TFS.
ChefEagle February 6, 2021
Traditionally we didn't eat wheat flour either. What you might have been shown is something called piki bread, which is a traditional bread originally made by the Hopi but both Navajo and Apache make it as well.
Fry bread is a post-reservation food created from commodity food that was given to the tribes placed on reservations (because the land that they were often placed on was arid and agriculturally poor...'cause ya know, it was in the Natives' best interest that the white settlers get to the plowable land).
That being said, fry bread has become a post-traditional food that you can find in just about every reservation throughout North America from Alaska to Florida, everyone has their own recipe tweaks, and everyone's mother makes the best. It is made with wheat flour. It is (shallow) fried in oil. It is delicious. Is it traditional? Nope. Is it ubiquitous throughout every Native kitchen a powwow? Sure is.
matt June 21, 2017
Love this recipe, was amazed how delicious something so simple could be, once I got the kneading right! Found a great topping for it too:
myknifeswork February 9, 2015
just a little note. We do everything as a family even at a young age. pictured is my baby girl at 6 months playing with dough and my nieces when they were young making fry bread for my mom to fry. When I was little I did the same thing by shaping the dough. Food is important and so is eating at a dinner table.
ChefEagle February 6, 2021
Aho! Teach 'em young.