This recipe puts the "fun" in funnel cake, and it tastes just like the one you would get at the county fair. It's deliciously crispy on the outside yet light and fluffy inside, and it has a powdered sugar topping that just melts in your mouth.
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My Take On a Classic Funnel Cake
Fair-style funnel cakes always bring back happy memories for me. Biting into warm and fluffy freshly fried funnel cakes topped with powdered sugar never fails to put me in a good mood!
That being said, making homemade ones can sometimes be a little intimidating because you typically need a lot of ingredients.
But that’s not the case when you make this recipe! And even better yet is the fact that it takes just over 15 minutes to make. So you can easily make this kettle corn to go with it for the ultimate fair food spread.
- Buttermilk pancake mix- this is the main ingredients and it makes up the batter.
- Sugar- for a little extra sweetness.
- Water- you'll need this for the batter. Depending on what mix you're using, you might need an egg.
- Vanilla extract- to enhance all of the flavors.
- Powdered sugar- for a topping that melts in your mouth.
- Vegetable oil- for frying.
By the way, you might want to pick up an extra box or two of pancake mix at the store. You can use it along with most of the other ingredients to make our air fryer oreos next! For a scratch version of this recipe, check out my other funnel cake recipe.
How To Make Funnel Cake With Pancake Mix
Step 1: Prepare. Take out a skillet and fill it halfway with oil. An 8-inch skillet is ideal, but you can also use a 10-inch one if that’s what you have. Put the skillet on the stovetop and turn it up to medium heat.
Step 2: Make the batter. Whisk the pancake mix in a bowl with the water, sugar, and vanilla extract. Don't be afraid to add the water in increments to make sure you get the perfect consistency. The batter should be as thick as a cake batter and shouldn’t be too runny or gooey. A good way to tell if it’s ready is if the batter falls from the whisk like ribbons. Anyway, add the batter to a piping bag.
Step 3: Frying. Add enough oil to the heated skillet to cover the funnel cake completely, and let it reach 375°F. Once you have hot oil, squeeze the batter into the hot frying oil in a circular motion. Start from the center and work your way out until you’ve got a 5-inch disk. Let it cook for about 1 minute or until the bottom is golden brown. Flip it over, and cook the other side for around 30 seconds to 1 minute or until the underside is golden brown too.
Step 4: Finish up. Repeat the frying process with the rest of the batter. Transfer each one to a plate lined with paper towels to soak up any excess oil. Sprinkle it with powdered sugar and serve warm with a side of fresh strawberries or your choice of fruit, and enjoy!
How I Recommend Storing These Funnel Cakes
If I have any leftovers, I'll put them in a ziploc bag with a sheet of parchment paper between each one and keep them on the kitchen counter for a day or two. To keep them longer, I'll just wrap each funnel cake in plastic wrap, store in a freezer-safe bag, and freeze for 3 months.
To reheat, my favorite way is to bake at 350°F for about 10 minutes until warm. About 20 minutes will do the trick if you're reheating the frozen cakes.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I have to swirl the batter?
No, you don't have to. I like to make a thick swirl, but you have a finer tip on the piping bag, you can also pipe the batter in a criss-cross pattern for that classic look.
Can I make this without a piping bag?
Yes, you can just put the batter in a ziploc bag and cut one of the corners with scissors.
- 1 cup buttermilk pancake mix
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- About ½ cup water
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Powdered sugar
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- Strawberries to serve
- Fill an 8-inch skillet halfway with oil, then turn it to medium heat.
- Add pancake mix to a bowl and whisk in the water, sugar, and vanilla.
- Batter should be the thickness of cake batter, not too runny and not too gooey. It should fall from the whisk like ribbons.
- Put the mixture in a piping bag.
- Quickly squeeze the batter in a circular motion into the frying pan, forming a 5-inch disk. Cook about a minute until golden brown on the bottom. Flip and cook on the other side for about 30 seconds to 1 minute, until golden brown.
- Remove from the oil and transfer to a plate lined with paper towels.
- Sprinkle it with powdered sugar and serve warm with strawberries.
Serving Size:1 funnel cake
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 501Total Fat: 6.8gSaturated Fat: 0.9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 17mgSodium: 1197mgCarbohydrates: 94gFiber: 5gSugar: 24.9gProtein: 13.4g