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Enjoy this funnel cake recipe you can make at home! No fairgrounds needed, just extra powdered sugar and a craving for something sweet.
Homemade funnel cake fries up perfectly golden, crispy, and practically melts in your mouth. Try experimenting with different fun toppings like apple pie filling, fresh berries, and whipped cream or chocolate sauce. Or set up a funnel cake bar with options and let your friends and family load theirs up.
Funnel Cake Ingredients
You only need 7 pantry staple ingredients to make the simple funnel cake batter. I bet you have everything you need on hand!
- Milk – You can use whole, low fat, or nonfat milk.
- Vanilla extract – I recommend using pure vanilla extract but you can also use imitation vanilla flavor
- All-purpose flour
- White granulated sugar
- Baking powder
How to Make Easy Funnel Cake at home
The batter is easy to mix up, they cook in less than 5 minutes, and you don’t even need to be scared of the frying portion. I break it down into simple steps.
Preheat the Oil. Start by preheating 2 inches of the oil in a heavy, deep skillet. Heat over medium until the oil reaches 300 degrees F. While the oil is heating, mix up the batter.
Batter. Whisk together the wet ingredients (milk, eggs, and vanilla) in a medium bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt). Add the wet ingredients to the dry and whisk until combined and there are no lumps.
Fry. Scoop up some of the batter in a measuring cup and drizzle the batter into the hot oil. Drizzle the batter around in an overlapping, swirl to make the classic drizzled pattern. Cook them for about 2 minutes per side – until golden.
Drain. Remove the cake from the oil (I like to use tongs or a slotted spatula) and allow the excess oil to drip off. Place on a paper towel to soak up the excess oil.
Repeat. Repeat with the rest of the batter and serve with your favorite toppings!
In my opinion, the toppings are the best part! While dusting with powdered sugar is the classic choice, there are so many fun options!
- Fruit – Fresh berries such as sliced strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, or a combination.
- Pie Filling – You can even use canned pie filling, such as cherry for an easy topping. Or if you have the time, this homemade blueberry pie filling is incredibly delicious.
- Chocolate Sauce – Drizzle with your favorite chocolate sauce. You can also top the chocolate drizzle with fresh berries too!
- Caramel Sauce – Store bought or homemade caramel sauce is the best sticky, sweet combination.
- Powdered Sugar – Grab a fine mesh sieve to dust the powdered sugar for a beautiful presentation!
- Ice Cream – Use as the base for an amazing sundae! Homemade Chocolate Ice Cream would be amazing or a quick No Churn Cookie Dough Ice Cream.
Expert Tips and FAQs
- Best served fresh – If you don’t want the full batch, you can easily cut the batter recipe in half to make just 2-3 cakes.
- Best oil for frying – Make sure to use an oil with a high smoke point and neutral flavor. I like to use a vegetable oil or canola oil.
- Use a thermometer – Use a deep fry thermometer to check the temperature of your oil. It’s important that the oil is the right temp – if the oil isn’t hot enough, the finished cakes can get greasy and if it’s too hot then they may overcook.
- No funnel needed – While the name comes from pouring the batter through a funnel to spiral the batter into the pan. You can get the same results without using a funnel! I like to just use a measuring cup to drizzle the batter into the oil, but you can also put the batter in a zip top bag and snip the corner.
- Want to use a funnel? If you want to use a funnel for a traditional, carnival experience you can. Start with a clean funnel that has about a ½ inch opening. Use your finger to plug the opening and add your batter. Then hold the funnel over the oil, remove your finger, and move the funnel in a criss-cross, spiral pattern.
- Make the Batter in Advance – While they really are best served fresh, you can store extra batter in the fridge, covered, for 1-2 days.
More Fair Style Favorites
- 2 cups of milk
- 3 eggs
- 2 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract or imitation vanilla flavor
- 3 cups of all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup of granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons of baking powder
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- Vegetable oil for frying
- Optional: powdered sugar for dusting
- Preheat 2 inches of vegetable oil in a deep-frying skillet over medium heat until it reaches 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
- In the meantime, whisk the milk, eggs and vanilla together in a medium size bowl then set aside.
- Add the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a separate bowl and whisk once again to combine.
- Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and whisk just until there are no more lumps.
- Add the batter to a measuring cup and drizzle the batter around into the pan.
- Let it cook for about two minutes on each side or until golden in color.
- Drain the funnel cake from the oil and let it cool completely on a plate fitted with a paper towel to soak up any excess oil.
- Repeat the process with the remaining batter then serve the funnel cakes with a dust of powdered sugar and caramel or chocolate sauce.