If you’re a fan of traditional beignets, you’ll love these Haitian Beignets. Typically served during Carnival but they are as equally festive during the holiday season or special occasions.
Authentic Haitian Beignets
Due to some key differences in recipes and preparation between the two styles, Authentic Haitian beignets have a different look and taste, but they’re just as delectable.
Unlike any other beignets you’ve tasted, these Haitian Beignets are prepared with a slightly different technique. Instead of having the flour as the base of the beignets, the base of our beignets are ripe bananas.
The flour is only included to add some substance to the batter, but it is not included as equal parts.
Haitian Beignets are not deep fried as they are pan fried.
trust us when we tell you, you’ll love this twist on our favorite deep-fried pastry.
The ingredients in Haitian beignets differ from the ones we are accustomed to here in the United States.
Haitian Beignets are not “light and fluffy”. For example, there’s no yeast, instead baking soda is included to make them float while they fry.
Bananas: When choosing bananas, make sure your fruit is ripe. The darker the better. This will make mashing easier and give the beignets a sweeter flavor.
Vanilla & Almond Extract: For this recipe, we’re adding vanilla extract, as well as ½ teaspoons of almond extract as this will make a whole world of difference and will add a new dimension of flavor and complement the banana.
Cinnamon, rum, and milk: These are all optional for this recipe. However, we did use ½ teaspoon of cinnamon to add a burst of flavor, and we used Carnation milk to make the batter richer.
If you choose to add rum the alcohol will cook out of the beignets, making them safe, and delicious, for everyone to eat.
Sugar & Kosher Salt: The salt will balance out the sugar.
How To Fry Banana Beignets
Unlike traditional beignets, Haitian beignets are prepared into a batter, not dough. Because they’re a street style food, they’re much quicker to make, as a traditional beignet has to chill for a long period of time before frying, Haitian beignets do not need to chill.
It is best to use overly ripe bananas. IF you do not have over ripe bananas, you can ripen them yourself in the oven or use a food processor to help with the mashing.
Once you’ve mashed the bananas, sit the bananas aside and prepare the dry ingredients.
Once you are done mixing the dry ingredients, add in the wet ingredients one at a time.
You’ll notice that the batter will start to resemble a pancake batter but thinner. Again, that’s because the base of the batter is banana.
In a large skillet heated with 2 cups of frying oil, add one scoop of the batter to the frying pan. The oil should be very hot as these will only cook for 2 minutes per side.
Once you are done frying them, transfer the beignets to a paper toweled plate so that the oil can continue to drain.
Once they completely cooled, sprinkle them with sugar before serving.
The Fastest Way to Ripen Bananas
Although there are various ways to ripen bananas, the quickest way we find to ripen bananas is to pop them in the oven.
Using a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, place the bananas on the sheet. The cookie sheet will help catch the juices that the banana will release while baking.
Transfer the unripen bananas in the pre-heated oven at 300 degrees for 40 minutes.
When the bananas are done, they will look very dark and extremely soft when you touch them.
Allow them to cool, peel and transfer them to a bowl to mash.
Make sure your bananas are beaten until smooth, and your batter is well mixed. This will ensure the beignets cook evenly throughout when fried.
Fry your beignets until they are golden brown and be sure to get the oil hot enough before adding in the batter. The temperature should be no less than 325 degrees but no more than 350 degrees.
If the oil is too cool, it’ll take longer for them to fry and affect the texture. Part of what makes Haitian beignets so tasty is their fried dough!
The thickness of your batter will determine the thickness of your beignets. However, your batter should never be dense.
Make sure you drain the oil before serving, as leaving it on to soak will also affect the texture. This can be done by placing the beignets on paper towels.
They will be extremely oily. You can use peanut oil, canola oil, or vegetable oil to fry the beignets.
Eggs are completely optional but it does help to bind the ingredients.
Traditional beignets are known for their sugar top, as this elevates the flavor significantly. Haitian beignets, however, are often dusted with regular sugar instead of powdered sugar, and that’s what we’re doing for this recipe. This will add a lovely texture and make for a bit of a caramelized flavor.
You can use your hands or a spoon to dust the sugar. If you are using powdered sugar, we recommend using a sieve or a sifter will make for an even distribution and a pretty presentation. It’ll keep your hands cleaner, too.
These beignets are delicious on their own, but they can also be dipped in chocolate, topped with whipped cream, or more slices of banana. Typically, they’re just served as is, though.
You can also enjoy them for breakfast with coffee or tea. And they make a delicious, sweet appetizer when served with Haitian Kremas.
How To Store
The one downside to Haitian beignets is that they’re hard to save. They can be stored in an airtight container for a couple days, but they lose their temperature, and reheating is difficult. It’s best to eat these right after they’re fried, as that’s when they’ll taste the best.
If you do try to revive them, put them in your oven at a low temperature for a few minutes to heat them up, but note that this will cook the sugar, and, if in there for too long, change the texture.
MORE HAITIAN RECIPES TO ENJOY
If you are wondering what other Haitian recipes you can enjoy at home with your family, here are a few more options for you to try.
It warms our hearts to see the recipes you make from this site.
We’d especially would love to know if you tried this recipe, tag us on Instagram or Facebook so we can see your beautiful dish.
Also, we would appreciate if could give it a star rating below!
How To Make Haitian Beignets
- Large Frying Pan
- 3 Mashed Bananas
- 1 ⅓ Cup All Purpose Flour
- ½ Tsp. Baking Soda
- ¼ Tsp. Granulated Sugar Plus more for dusting
- 2 Tsp. Vanilla Extract
- ½ Tsp. Ground Nutmeg
- 1 Can Carnation Milk (12 Fl. Oz.) Or Water
- 1 Egg
- ½ Tsp. Almond Extract
- ¼ Tsp. Kosher Salt
- ½ Tsp. Ground Cinnamon Optional
- Mash the bananas with a fork (or food processor). Next add in the sugar, milk, eggs, salt, baking soda, nutmeg and cinnamon, vanilla and almond extract. Continue to mix well. Then fold in the all-purpose flour.
- In a large frying pan add in 2 cups of oil. Bring the temperature to no more than 350°F (Adjust the temperature as needed but do not lower it under 325°F).Use a ice cream scoop to add in the batter in batches. Fry for 2 minutes per side. Then remove from the frying pan and set aside on a paper toweled plate. Allow to cool and enjoy with dusted sugar on top.
- Make sure your bananas are beaten until smooth, and your batter is well mixed. This will ensure the beignets cook evenly throughout when fried.
- The temperature should be no less than 325 degrees but no more than 350 degrees. If the oil is too cool, it’ll take longer for them to fry and affect the texture. Part of what makes Haitian beignets so tasty is their fried dough!
- The thickness of your batter will determine the thickness of your beignets. However, your batter should never be dense.
- Make sure you drain the oil before serving, as leaving it on to soak will also affect the texture. This can be done by placing the beignets on paper towels.
- They will be extremely oily. You can use peanut oil, canola oil, or vegetable oil to fry the beignets.
My Haitian father used to make these for me growing up, anytime we had too many bananas. He’s passed but I can’t wait to make these. Thank you for providing the memories and the recipe. NOLA beignets are fabulous too but it goes to show how industrious the Haitian slaves were when they arrived in Louisiana and didn’t have a surplus of bananas.
Thank you so much. Sorry for the loss of your dad. We hope you get a chance to try this recipe.
I love the idea of using bananas as the base. Can’t wait to try them!
Thank you, Jess!
My family was impressed with these beignets!! So good! Thanks for the recipe!
So glad to hear that Toni!
I’m so excited to try these beignets! They look so delicious. Banana, nutmeg and almond are such a great combo.
Thank you. We hope you like it.
These were so delicious! I had never had beignets with bananas in them before! Boy do they make a difference!
Thank you so much, Mindee.