Living in Arizona, I certainly get my fill of fry bread, but I never get tired
of it. There are vendors at every carnival, rodeo, street fairs, etc. And you can
get it topped any way you like or just eat it plain!
My favorite place to buy fry bread is from one of the vendors in the parking
lot at San Xavier Mission del Bac (White Dove of the Desert) Mission in Tucson.
They are fried in large iron kettles over a mesquite fire, and they are to die for!
I have recently seen some recipes for Indian Fry Bread that call for yeast. I
have never seen a Native American make fry bread with yeast, at least not in Arizona.
I can’t imagine that they would even taste remotely like the fry bread I know.
Each completed fry bread may be topped with refried beans, chili, confectioners’
sugar or honey. If making a savory fry bread, top the refried beans with diced tomatoes,
shredded lettuce and shredded cheese. It makes a complete meal. If desired, the
rounds may be folded over after topping and eaten that way. It’s really easier to
eat them if they are folded in half, but it’s all a matter of preference.
3 cups flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon shortening, lard or vegetable oil
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup warm water
Measure dry ingredients into a deep mixing bowl. Add shortening and knead
with hands until dough is in small pea-size pieces. Add warm, not hot, water
and knead with hands until dough is smooth and leaves sides of bowl. Knead at
least 5 minutes.
Cover with a clean dish towel, and place in a warm place to rise for 30
This is the secret for tender fry bread - kneading and resting.
Lightly coat bottom of air fryer basket with olive oil. Set air fryer to
360 degrees F and allow it to preheat for about 3 minutes.
Break off a golfball-size ball of dough and roll flat on a lightly floured
surface. Brush top of rolled out pieces of dough with olive oil. Place dough
pieces (2 or 3 at a time, so they aren't overlapping) into the basket of the
air fryer (oiled side down) and brush top of dough with oil. Cook for 3 to 4
minutes; then flip and cook about another 3 to 4 minutes (until puffy and golden
Repeat with remaining dough.
The cooked fry bread can also be frozen and then simply reheated in the microwave.