Cinnamon-Sugar Churros with Cajeta

Churros require a relatively stiff batter to help them hold their ridged shape, leaving plenty of nooks for cinnamon-sugar. To prevent blowouts while piping the batter, be sure to double-line the pastry bags, which will also give you more control.

Cinnamon Sugar Churros Recipe with Cajeta
Photo: Greg Dupree
Active Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 30 mins
Yield:
14

Ingredients

  • 2 cups water

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted cultured butter (3 ounces)

  • 1 vanilla bean pod, seeds scraped, or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1 cinnamon stick

  • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest

  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (about 9 5/8 ounces)

  • 1 large egg

  • 2 cups granulated sugar

  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

  • Grapeseed oil, for frying

  • Cajeta or sweetened condensed milk, for serving

Directions

  1. Combine 2 cups water, butter, vanilla bean seeds and pod, cinnamon stick, orange zest, and salt in a large saucepan over medium; bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Let simmer until infused with cinnamon and vanilla, a few minutes. Remove and discard cinnamon stick and vanilla bean pod. Add flour all at once, and quickly stir with a heatproof spatula or wooden spoon until completely incorporated, about 20 seconds.

  2. Immediately transfer mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on medium speed until slightly cooled and the steam dies down, about 3 minutes. Add egg, and beat on medium speed until completely incorporated, about 20 seconds. Transfer some of the batter to a double-lined pastry bag (place 1 bag inside another) fitted with a 1/3-inch open star tip, refilling bag as needed.

  3. Pipe 14 (15-inch-long) straight ropes of batter onto 2 parchment paper–lined baking sheets. Alternatively, pipe dough in teardrop shapes, lightly pressing ends together to secure. Chill shapes at least 30 minutes or up to 2 hours. (Alternatively, freeze on baking sheets until hardened. Transfer to a large ziplock plastic freezer bag, and freeze up to 1 month. Cooktime will be the same)

  4. Stir together sugar and remaining 1 tablespoon cinnamon in a large bowl; set aside. Pour oil to a depth of 2 1/2 inches in a large Dutch oven. Heat over medium-high to 375°F. Working in batches, fry chilled or frozen churros, turning occasionally, until the churros rise to top of oil and turn light golden brown with a crispy outside and custardy center, 2 minutes and 30 seconds to 3 minutes and 30 seconds, returning oil to 375°F between batches. Toss hot churros in cinnamon-sugar, and serve immediately with cajeta or sweetened condensed milk for dipping.

Make Ahead

Piped churros can be chilled, uncovered, up to 2 hours or frozen on a sheet tray, transferred to a large ziplock plastic freezer bag, and frozen up to 1 month. Fry straight from the refrigerator or frozen (cook time is the same from frozen)

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