Have you ever been to one of the most festive cities in the United States and tasted a New Orleans beignet? It seems like every person that visits New Orleans doesn’t leave without trying these classic French donuts.
Many people adore beignets (also called “New Orleans donuts” or “Louisana-style doughnuts”), which are typically deep fried in unhealthy oil and loaded with multiple forms of refined sugar, but not this beignet recipe! This twist on a classic uses much healthier ingredients (like coconut oil), and it’s even gluten-free. Before we dig into how to make beignets, exactly what is a beignet?
What Is A Beignet?
The beignet was brought by French colonists to New Orleans in the 18th century. From then on, they have become quite entrenched in the cuisine of Louisiana. In fact, beignets became Louisiana’s official state donut in 1986!
Pronounced ben-YAY, this sweet treat is often described as a cross between a French pastry and an American donut. They are fried, raised pieces of dough, commonly around 2 inches in diameter or 2 inches square. This New Orleans pastry is often eaten as a dessert, for breakfast or a sweet treat at any hour.
As I already mentioned, typically, a beignet gets deep fried. It’s also usually made from choux pastry, which is a light pastry dough commonly used to make desserts with a European origin — like éclairs and profiteroles. This light and airy dough is ideal for sweets that involve a filling of some kind.
While that typical beignet dough may be tasty, for many people with a gluten allergy or gluten intolerance, beignets are a complete no-go. Not anymore because this beignet recipe is actually gluten-free!
One serving of this beignet recipe contains about:
- 133 calories
- 3.4 grams protein
- 5 grams fat
- 17.7 grams carbohydrate
- 2.3 grams fiber
- 8.8 grams sugars
- 10.7 milligrams sodium
- 1.2 milligrams iron (6.7 percent DV)
- 18 milligrams calcium (1.8 percent DV)
For a dessert, this beignet recipe is pretty healthy. Per serving, it’s not overdoing it at all when it comes to calories and more importantly, it’s not too high in sugar. It also has a notable amount of energy providing protein and healthy fat.
How to Make Beignets
Making beignets at home can be a lot healthier and easier than you think with a recipe like this one. Are you ready to make some homemade beignets?
First, sift the Paleo flour to remove any large clumps and set it aside.
In a bowl, mix together the water, yeast and sugar. Then, let stand for about 8 minutes.
In a separate bowl, whisk eggs, evaporated milk and salt together. Now, add the yeast mixture you set aside.
Add ½ the amount of flour and then mix. Add coconut oil, remaining flour and cinnamon.
Knead with hands to ensure all ingredients are mixed well and mold the dough into a large ball.
Place dough ball in the bowel and cover it with a towel. Let stand for at least 1–2 hours.
Heat coconut oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Right before you’re ready to fry them (to ensure they stay intact), form the dough tightly into 1–2 inch balls.
Fry the dough balls for 3–4 minutes on each side or until they are golden brown.
Cool on a paper towel and sprinkle with equal parts arrowroot flour and maple sugar for a powdered sugar substitute.
Take a bite of this beignet recipe and enjoy! Want extra sweetness? You can try dipping these in maple syrup for a little added flavor.
- ½ cup room temperature water
- 2 tablespoons active dry yeast
- ½ cup coconut sugar
- 3 cups Paleo flour
- 2 eggs
- pinch of sea salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ cup evaporated coconut milk
- 1½ tablespoons coconut oil
- coconut oil, for frying
- equal parts arrowroot flour and maple sugar for powdered sugar substitute
- Sift Paleo flour to remove large clumps and set aside.
- In a bowl, mix together water, yeast and sugar. Let stand for about 8 minutes.
- In a separate bowl, whisk egg, evaporated milk and salt.
- Add yeast mixture.
- Add ½ the amount of flour and mix.
- Add coconut oil, remaining flour and cinnamon.
- Knead with hands to ensure all ingredients are mixed well.
- Mold dough into a large ball and cover bowl with a towel. Let stand for at least 1–2 hours.
- Heat oil in a small saucepan over medium heat.
- Form dough tightly into 1–2 inch balls just before you fry to make sure they stay intact.
- Fry dough balls for 3–4 minutes on each side or until golden-brown.
- Cool on a paper towel and serve with powdered sugar substitute.
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