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Round Colombian buñuelos
Alternative names Bimuelo, birmuelo, bermuelo, burmuelo, bonuelo
Type Doughnut
Place of origin Spain
Cookbook:Buñuelo  Buñuelo

A buñuelo (Spanish: [buˈɲwelo]) (alternatively called bimuelo, birmuelo, bermuelo, burmuelo, or bonuelo; Catalan: bunyol, IPA: [buˈɲɔɫ]) is a fried dough ball. It is a popular snack in Argentina, Bolivia, Colombia, Cuba, Guatemala, Mexico, Peru, Puerto Rico, Ecuador, Spain, Turkey, Greece, and Morocco, and is a tradition at Christmas, Ramadan, and among Sephardic Jews at Hanukkah. It will usually have a filling or a topping. It is also an "essential dish" in Mexican cuisine,[1][2] often served with a syrup made with piloncillo.[3]

Buñuelos are first known to have been consumed among Spain's Morisco population. They typically consist of a simple, wheat-based yeast dough, often flavored with anise, that is thinly rolled, cut or shaped into individual pieces, then fried and finished off with a sweet topping. Buñuelos may be filled with a variety of things, sweet or savory. They can be round in ball shapes or disc shaped.

Regional adaptations[edit]

Home-made Colombian Buñuelos
  • In Colombia they are made with a small curd white cheese and formed into doughy balls then fried golden brown. It is a traditional Christmas dish, served along with natillas and manjar blanco.
  • In Cuba they are traditionally twisted in a figure 8 and covered in an anise caramel. The dough contains cassava and malanga.
  • In the Dominican Republic, buñuelos are rolled into balls from a dough made of cassava (called yuca) and eggs. They are then covered in a cinnamon sugar syrup, often using coconut milk instead of water.
  • In Nicaragua buñuelos are made of cassava. The buñuelos are rolled into balls and deep fried and served with honey. They are eaten year-round, and are a typical side-dish or snack served during holidays.
  • In Puerto Rico, buñuelos are small and round. The dough is often made with milk, baking powder, egg, flour, apio or cassava, or grated corn that has been squeezed through a cheesecloth. They are often filled with cheese, ham, spices, and then baked. Sweet buñuelo dough contains yam or batata filled with guava and cream cheese and usually fried.
  • In Italy the Zeppole is a popular version of buñuelos made of dough balls about 2 inches (5.1 cm) in diameter, these doughnuts or fritters are usually topped with powdered sugar and may be filled with custard, jelly, cannoli-style pastry cream, or a butter-and-honey mixture. Their consistency ranges from light and puffy, to bread or pasta-like.
Mexican buñuelos

There are references to buñuelos in Majorca, Catalonia or Valencia; there are also buñuelos in Turkey, India, Puerto Rico, and Cuba; buñuelos in Russia. Jews in Turkey make buñuelos with matzo meal and eat them during Passover. They are also popular during Hanukkah.[citation needed]

In many Latin American places, this particular dish can be also made with flour tortillas, and covered in sugar and/or cinnamon.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Maria Herrera-Sobek (2012). Celebrating Latino Folklore: An Encyclopedia of Cultural Traditions. ABC-CLIO. pp. 176–178. ISBN 9780313343391. Retrieved 30 October 2012. 
  2. ^ Arlyn Hackett Quick buñuelos an easy treat for holidays Slice of History December 15, 2004 San Diego Tribune
  3. ^ Grodinsky, Peggy (6 September 2006). "Pump up the flavor with piloncillo". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved 23 January 2014.