Navajo Fry Bread - Traditional

"This recipe for Navajo Fry bread is from the Rough Rock Demonstration School in Rough Rock AZ. The Navajo people developed this to use the commodities they received from the government. In some recipes you will find that dry milk is also used. Lard was the original fat used to fry the bread."
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Ready In:




  • Mix the flour, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. Gradually stir in the water and work it in, adding more water a little at a time, if needed.
  • Knead by hand until soft but not sticky. Form the dough into a round ball, cover and let stand for about 30 minutes. Shape into 2" balls.
  • Heat shortening or cooking oil in a 1 1/2 " deep frying pan until hot.
  • Flatten each ball of dough by patting and stretching into a pizza shape. Carefully place the dough into the hot oil.
  • Fry until edges of the bread are golden and turn to cook the other side. Makes 4-5 pieces.
  • Layer the beans, chilis, onion, tomato,lettuce, cheese and if desired sour cream dollops on top of each piece of fry bread to make Navajo (or Indian) Tacos
  • Fry bread may be served with stews or drizzled with honey or powdered sugar for dessert. Many Navajo cooks prefer to use "Bluebird" a high-gluten flour, in this recipe. Variations: The Navajo Nation in Window Rock serves a taco topped with chicken, chili beans without the beef and the remaining ingredients.

Questions & Replies

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  1. The only reason I have this 2 states is because the flavor was OK. Other than that my bread came out hard & dense. My search for fluffy fry bread continues...sigh
  2. I would give this no stars if I could. the flour was way too much and I ended up trashing the whole thing and starting over with 1/2 the flour requested in this recipe.
  3. I got a wild hair and felt like having Navajo Tacos--it's been a good 20yrs since having them in a school cafeteria. I chose this recipe of three I was eyeballing from here because it did not contain milk (I cannot have dairy products currently) and it comes from the region of the Navajo People. These were very tasty and I'm tempted to make up a batch at least once a week!! I only have standard all-purpose flour so I used 3c. flour, 1/8c gluten, and 7/8c red wheat flour. I think I should have put in a wee-bit more water than I did, but it turned out fine in the end. I fried in olive oil--I need to find a reputable source for lard (local). We found the frying experience to be more manageable by fork piercing prior to frying, otherwise we had great candidates for pitas. Thank you for sharing Colorado Lauralee!!
  4. Really great! I've had my eye on this recipe for a while now. My family really enjoyed it. Thanks for sharing!
  5. Made this bread for dinner today and it was not only extremely easy, it had great flavor and awesome texture. We used just regular taco toppings, and also butter and jelly. Will definitely be making this again.


Our picture was taken at Bryce Canyon NP when we celebrated our 47th anniversary. (It has now been 54 years!!) <br> <br>Of course, I love to cook and bake. Desserts seem to be my specialty, however my husband & I like Mexican, Southwest, Greek, and Italian cuisine alot. Healthy food(soy milk, tofu etc.), alot of raw vegetables and made from scratch comprise much of our diet. I have always had problems cooking fish, tho we do like to eat fish. We are both retired. <br> <br>I love Labrador Retreivers and have owned, trained and shown several very nice ones! <br> <br>My husband and I are both natives of Colorado, however somehow we ended up living in St. George Utah, in the South west corner, near Zion, Bryce, & Grand Canyon National Parks, which we enjoy alot. Before the price of gasoline took a jump, I volunteered at Zion NP. <br> <br>We celebrated our 53th wedding anniversary in the summer of 2008.
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