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Delicious homemade Indian Fry Bread cooked to perfection in an air fryer! Also known as “Navajo tacos” and “Indian fry bread,” this Southwestern favorite can be served savory with traditional taco toppings or served sweet with honey and powdered sugar.
Growing up in Arizona, there was plenty of “Indian” fry bread to go around. It’s a menu staple among restaurants and food trucks throughout the Southwest and for good reason! It’s delicious.
This air fryer fry bread is perfectly crisped on the outside and soft and chewy on the inside. Fortunately, this recipe for fry bread is so quick and easy you can make it at home in a matter of minutes.
This simple bread tastes amazing with both savory and sweet toppings. Top with your favorite taco fixings for a satisfying entree or drizzle with honey and a sprinkle of powdered sugar for an addicting dessert.
What Is “Indian” Fry Bread?
“Indian” fry bread recipes date back many generations. The recipe originated in the Navajo Nation and is still a beloved food enjoyed throughout the American Southwest generations later. Traditional Native American fry bread recipes call for just a few basic ingredients to make the perfect vessel for taco toppings, sweet treats and so much more.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- This recipe is inspired by authentic Native American fry bread recipes.
- Great way to try a regional food you can’t get as easily anywhere else.
- Cooking fry bread in an air fryer cuts back on oils and mess.
- Fry bread is delicious topped with savory AND sweet toppings. The options are endless.
- Fried dough is always a kid-friendly food and adults love it too.
Ingredients You’ll Need
For Fry Bread:
- All-purpose Flour – is the main ingredient and the structure of this basic dough recipe.
- Baking Powder – is a leavening agent that makes bread rise.
- Salt – helps the dough rise evenly creating a cohesive, pita-like bread.
- Warm Water – adds moisture to the dry dough ingredients so they form into a firm dough.
- Vegetable Oil – Since we are air frying rather than deep-frying, vegetable oil coats the dough to achieve a lightly crisped and golden crust on the surface of each piece of fry bread.
For Savory Toppings:
- Taco Meat – Use your favorite taco-seasoned ground meat. This is a great way to re-purpose leftovers from Taco night!
- Shredded Cheese – like mild cheddar or a Mexican blend.
- Chopped Lettuce, Diced Onion, Diced Tomato – Use these classic taco toppings or a variety of your favorites.
For Sweet Toppings:
- Powdered Sugar
- Maple Syrup
How To Make Air Fryer Indian Fry Bread Recipe
1 – In a mixing bowl, combine all the dry ingredients.
2 – Using a bread hook, mix in the water and oil. Knead on medium-slow for 5-10 minutes until the dough forms a ball and no longer sticks to the bowl.
3 – Place dough ball in an oiled bowl, cover with a damp cloth and let dough rest for 2 hours.
4 – Cut the dough and form in golf ball size balls.
5 – Using your hands, compress the dough balls to form a small flat bread 1/4” thick.
6 – Place in air fryer basket and spray with oil. Cook on 330 degrees for 7 minutes, flip and cook for 3 more minutes.
7 – Top with taco meat, lettuce, cheese, onion and tomatoes.
- Avoid over-kneading the dough. Stir the dough ingredients until a firm ball of dough forms and then stop.
- Do not overcrowd your air fryer basket or overlap the balls of dough. For the dough to cook evenly, it needs to have room to rise. Depending on the size of your air fryer basket, you may need to work in batches.
- The high heat in the air fryer can cause the dough to curl up. To keep “Indian” fry bread flat, cut 1/8th of an inch slit down the middle of each piece of dough before cooking.
- Fry bread is best served fresh from the fryer (or in this case air fryer) but you can plop room temperature fry bread in the microwave for 15 seconds or so to warm it back up.
How To Serve “Indian” Fry Bread
Once fry bread is fresh out of the air fryer, you can go with savory toppings or sweet. Not in the mood for tacos? No worries. Try these savory options:
“Indian” fry bread is just as yummy topped with fajita chicken and vegetables.
Form dough into the size of “slider buns” to make bbq chicken sliders.
“Indian” fry bread is also the perfect dipping vessel for taco dip cups.
In addition to honey and powdered sugar, dessert-style fry bread is delicious drizzled with chocolate sauce, maple syrup, strawberry syrup, etc.
Storing & Freezing
Room Temperature – Wrap homemade fry bread loosely in plastic wrap and keep it on the countertop for 1 to 2 days.
Refrigerator – Once the bread has cooled, store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Freezer – Individually wrap each piece of fry bread tightly in plastic wrap and store them all in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 to 4 months.
Can I make fry bread dough in advance? You can, but keep in mind that fried doughs are best served fresh.
Why is my fry bread tough and chewy? This was most likely caused by over-kneading the dough. Be sure to stop working the dough as soon as the ingredients are mixed well.
Is Bannock the same as fry bread? Yes and no. While the ingredients for traditional Bannock recipes and fry bread are very similar, Bannock is usually baked (similar to a scone), and fry bread is fried. Also, Bannock traces back to European fur traders, and fry bread originated in the Navajo Nation.
Calories per serving (1 fry bread): 193
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 3/4 cup warm water
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 pound prepared taco meat
- 1 cup shredded cheese
- 1 1/2 cups chopped lettuce
- 1/2 cup tomatoes diced
- 1/2 cup onion diced
1. In a mixing bowl, combine all the dry ingredients.
2. Using a bread hook, mix in the water and oil. Knead on medium-slow for 5-10 minutes until the dough forms a ball and no longer sticks to the bowl.
3. Place dough ball in an oiled bowl, cover with a damp cloth and let dough rest for 2 hours.
4. Cut the dough and form in golf ball size balls.
5. Using your hands, compress the dough balls to form a small flat bread 1/4” thick.
6. Place in air fryer basket and spray with oil. Cook on 330° for 7 minutes, flip and cook for 3 more minutes.
7. Top with taco meat, lettuce, cheese, onion and tomatoes.
Different air fryer brands may cook at different rates, so be sure to keep on eye on food.
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Stainless Steel Mixing Bowls (Set of 6) Stainless Steel Mixing Bowl Set - Easy To Clean, Nesting Bowls for Space Saving Storage, Great for Cooking, Baking, Prepping
New Star Foodservice 42917 Stainless Steel Measuring Spoons and Measuring Cups Combo, Set of 8
Farberware Classic Wood Rolling Pin, 17.75-Inch, Natural
OXO Good Grips Silicone Basting & Pastry Brush-Small, Multicolor
Power Air Fryer XL 5.3 Quart
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 193Total Fat: 5gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 20mgSodium: 354mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 1gSugar: 0gProtein: 13g
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
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