Beignets are like a little donut pillow. A soft dough, cut into squares and fried until it puffs up and is golden. Delicious warm and with powdered sugar, we kick things up a notch with a delicious sauce. These pecan praline beignets are a delectable treat!
Tips for Delicious Beignets
- Proofing Yeast: To proof the yeast it is important to use warm water that is between 100-110 degrees. This creates an environment where the yeast can grow. If your liquid is too hot then it will kill the yeast. For more tips on cooking with yeast, check out my recipe for honey wheat bread.
- Make Ahead: The dough needs to rise for an hour before frying. But the great news is that it can be made several days in advance! Just wrap your bowl tightly and place it in the refrigerator. When you are ready to use it, place the bowl on your counter 30 minutes before rolling out, so that your dough is soft enough to work with.
- Rolling It Out: Roll the dough 1/4 inch thick, then cut into 2-inch squares. This size is important as it helps to keep the dough from flipping over in the oil.
- Shortening vs. Butter: This recipe calls for shortening, as this ingredient helps to create the whole in the middle that we look for in beignets. You can substitute butter, but it may result in losing the hollow center.
Frying the Dough
Oil temperature is critically important in making perfect beignets. If your oil is too cool, the beignets will be dense and chewy. If your oil is too hot then the outside will be dark before the inside has cooked. Use a candy thermometer, and check the temperature before each batch to ensure that the oil is ready.
It only takes a few minutes to fry into perfectly golden puffs of dough. Remove the beignets from the oil using a slotted scoop, and place onto a paper towel-lined plate. Pile on the powdered sugar, and they are ready to enjoy!
Pecan Praline Beignets Are Even Better Than Plain!
Hold up, maybe wait just a moment before you eat those beignets! They are delicious when coated in powdered sugar, and out of this world amazing with pecan praline sauce! Drizzle some praline sauce over the top of your beignets, or served as a dipping sauce on the side.
Frequently Asked Questions
They taste like a donut, but a little less sweet. That’s why they are so good with powdered sugar and praline sauce. These additions sweeten them right up!
We love to make cinnamon rolls with leftover beignet dough. Roll out the dough 1/4-inch thick, like you are making beignets. Spread melted butter, cinnamon, and sugar over the dough. Roll up and slice into 1 1/2 inch thick slices. Place in a greased baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes.
Yes, another great thing to do with extra beignet dough is to freeze it! Roll out and cut the dough like you are getting ready to fry them. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and place the dough on the parchment. Freeze overnight. The next day, remove the dough from the cookie sheet and place in an airtight, freezer-safe bag or container. These will keep in the freezer for 3 months. The day before you plan to use them, place them on a cookie sheet in the refrigerator to thaw.
If you have ever been to New Orleans, it is likely you have fallen in love with beignets from Cafe Du Monde. Our homemade beignet recipe is perfect with gumbo when you need your N’awlins fix. Just put on some jazz music, and take a virtual trip!
Beignets with Pecan Praline Sauce
- 3/4 cups warm water (100-110 degrees)
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 1/4 tsp dry active yeast
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 3 1/2 cups bread flour
- 3 tbsp shortening
- 1/2 tsp table salt
- Powdered sugar
- 4 cups oil, for frying
Pecan Praline Sauce
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar
- 1/3 cup milk
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 cup pecans
- In a small bowl, stir together warm water, sugar, and yeast. Let sit for 10 minutes, until it is bubbly.
- Meanwhile, using the paddle attachment for your mixer, beat an egg on medium speed for 2 minutes.
- Add milk and vanilla to the eggs, and mix well. Then add 2 cups of the flour, and continue mixing until combined.
- Pour in yeast mixture into the egg mixture. Mix on low speed for one minute.
- Add shortening, and continue mixing.
- Add remaining 1 1/2 cups of flour and salt. Exchange the paddle attachment for your dough hook, and knead on low speed for 2 minutes, or until dough is smooth.
- Cover and let the dough rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.If making at least 2 hours ahead, let dough rise in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.
- If refrigerated, bring dough out to room temperature 30 minutes before you are ready to cook.Punch dough down and turn onto a well-floured surface. Roll dough into a 1/4-inch thick triangle. Slice into 2-inch by 2-inch squares.
- Fill a wide and deep pan with 4 inches of oil, and heat on medium-high until it reaches 350 degrees.
- Working in batches of 4, fry dough squares until they are puffy and golden brown, 2-3 minutes each side. Using a slotted scoop, transfer to a paper towel lined plate and immediately dust with powdered sugar.
- Check the oil to ensure it has returned to 350 degres, then continue with remaining batches.Serve immediately.
- Place sugars, milk, and butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Once the butter has melted, cook and stir for 5 minutes.
- Remove from heat. Add vanilla and pecans.
- Drizzle over beignets to serve.
- If sauce has cooled and thickened it can be reheated. Add additional milk to thin to desired consistency.