Eva Kolenko

I was always intimidated by the idea of making sopaipillas at home. Maybe that’s because the restaurant I used to work at had an entire section of the kitchen devoted to churning out these delicious, airy treats. Once I put my big boy pants on and attempted a batch, though, I realized just how easy they are. Start here with this basic sopaipilla recipe and then turn the page for a few ideas about how to upgrade them! ~Jesse

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  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
  • 2 teaspoons sugar‍
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder‍
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt‍
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable shortening‍
  • Âľ cup whole milk, lukewarm (between 98° and 105°F)
  • Grapeseed or canola oil


  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Rub the shortening into the flour mixture with your fingers or a pastry cutter until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Stir in the milk until combined. Turn the dough out onto a clean surface and knead briefly (10 to 12 turns) to form a cohesive ball. The dough will be soft and slightly lumpy on the surface. Wipe out the bowl, then lightly coat it with a little oil. Transfer the dough back to the bowl, turn to coat all sides, then cover with plastic wrap and let stand for 20 minutes.
  2. Flour a work surface, then roll out the dough to a 10 by 15-inch rectangle about â…› inch thick. Use a sharp knife or pizza cutter to cut the dough into a grid with 4 spaces in one direction and 3 spaces in the other direction, for a total of 12 rectangles.
  3. Fit a large, heavy-bottomed pot or Dutch oven with a deep-fry thermometer. Pour in enough oil to reach a depth of 1½ inches. Heat the oil over medium-high heat until the temperature reaches 350°F. Line a baking sheet with paper towels and set nearby.
  4. Working in batches of 3 to 4 at a time, gently lower the sopaipillas into the hot oil and fry, flipping once, until golden and puffed, 50 to 60 seconds per side. Using a slotted spoon, carefully remove the sopaipillas from the oil and transfer to the paper towel–lined baking sheet, then fry the remaining dough pieces.

Reprinted from FOOD BETWEEN FRIENDS by Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Julie Tanous. Copyright © 2021 by Julie & Jesse Cook, LLC. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Random House, a division of Penguin Random House LLC.

Photographs copyright © 2021 by Eva Kolenko.

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