Navajo Tacos made with light, pillowy homemade fry bread are going to become a family favorite. Top them off with taco meat or chili and then pile on all your favorite taco toppings.
Navajo Tacos are one meal my boys would tell you I don’t make often enough. I think I might have to agree with them. Every time I do make them, we inhale them and I forget how much I love them!
And the best part about when I do make these, after we’ve filled up on eating the tacos, I fry up extra bread and we slather it in butter, honey, jam, cinnamon & sugar, powdered sugar, or whatever else you might be feeling.
If you’ve never had one, you’re missing out.
What is a Navajo Taco?
A Navajo taco is made up of a deep fry bread topped with taco meat or chili, and then topped with all your favorite taco toppings. I love that everyone can put on what they like, so even picky eaters will love these!
Tips for making Fry Bread:
- Make sure you keep your oil at a constant temperature. The best temperature is around 350-375° F. If you let the temperature get too low, the bread will be tough and not soft like a cloud. Opposite of that though it will become too hot and can easily burn on the outside while the inside does not cook.
- Before frying your bread, lay flat then cut a small slit in the center of piece of dough. This will help it from curling in the oil and will stay flat for your taco toppings.
- This recipe can easily be halved if you don’t need a lot of tacos.
Can I use frozen rolls to make the fry bread?
Of course you can, but if you do, I recommend you use the larger size rolls (like the Texas size Rhodes rolls). Also, make sure they are completely thawed before you try rolling or stretching them out. I definitely think it’s worth the little bit of extra effort it takes to make your own dough. It really is simple to make and is so, so good. But it’s totally up to you.
What is my favorite meat topping to use?
I think most people probably use taco meat for Navajo Tacos, but we love ours with chili even more. And to make it even more simple, I use Nalley’s canned chili. It’s our favorite. It’s a personal preference here, so use whatever you and your family will love the most. Go ahead and try both and see which one you like best.
One last thing, don’t forget to fry up some extra bread and make a sweet one. Raspberry jam and a little powdered sugar are probably my all-time favorite sweet variation to make.
- Total Time: 20 minutes
- Yield: 20–24 (depending on size you make them) 1x
Navajo Fry Bread:
- 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 3 cups warm water
- 6 tablespoons shortening
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 6 tablespoons nonfat dry milk
- 6 to 6 1/2 cups flour
- Oil for frying
- Chili or Taco meat
- Shredded lettuce
- Grated cheese
- Sour cream
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, dissolve yeast in the warm water. Let sit for 5 minutes. Add shortening, sugar, salt and dry milk. Mix until combined.
- Add flour one cup at a time to make a soft dough. Mix until dough is smooth and soft. Cover dough and let rest for 10 minutes.
- In a large heavy bottomed skillet, dutch oven or frying pan, heat oil (about 2 to 3 inches) over medium heat for about 5 minutes until the oil temperature reaches between 350 and 375 degrees F.
- Divide dough into equal pieces (a little smaller than the size of a baseball) and roll out on a lightly-floured surface into about a 5 to 6-inch circle.
- Gently place into hot oil, and cook until golden brown, then flip and cook opposite side until golden brown. Remove from oil and drain onto a plate or baking sheet lined with paper towels.
- Top with chili (or taco meat) and toppings of your choice.
- Prep Time: 20 mins
- Category: Main Dishes
Is there a substitute for the dry milk? Can you replace the powder and water for milk?
Hi Carly! I’ve never tried that so I don’t know how that would work. Dry milk can be found in the baking aisle of most grocery stores.