Is Fried Dough The Same As Funnel Cake?

Last updated on July 20th, 2022 at 08:58 pm

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Do you like desserts? If so, you have probably tried some fried dough. This dessert is made all over the world. It goes by different names but is all what its name describes it to be – fried dough. 

Fried dough is a popular sweet snack at fairs, festivals, and carnivals. Looking at the flat dough that has been fried and topped with powdered sugar and cinnamon, you may wonder if it is similar to funnel cakes sold at fairs and festivals because it looks similar. 

Is fried dough the same as a funnel cake?

Although they are both topped with powdered sugar, fried dough is different from funnel cakes. They are very much alike but are made differently. Funnel cakes are not made with real dough while fried dough is.

Is Fried Dough The Same As Funnel Cake?

Have you ever had a funnel cake at a fair? Maybe the day went a little like this. 

You were walking along checking out all of the colorful booths at a fair. The sun was shining brightly and a gentle breeze cooled the heat of the day down a bit. The more you walked and shopped, the hungrier you became. All the sudden a whiff of something sweet hit you. You glance over and see a food truck with a giant sign featuring a picture of a funnel cake. This funnel shaped dough-like dessert was topped with powdered sugar and looked absolutely delicious. 

You headed over to buy yourself one and satisfy your hunger. When you got your order, you took a bite of the doughy dessert savoring every bite of the sweet treat. Now, if you have enjoyed a funnel cake you know that it is doughy and delicious. 

Hearing the words fried dough may cause you to think of a funnel cake. But, they are in fact different things. We will discuss the differences between fried dough and funnel cakes as we continue on through this article because although they may seem similar in some ways, they are not exactly the same thing.

What Is Another Name For Fried Dough?

Fried dough is popular worldwide, coming in all kinds of different shapes. Some flat, some round, but all are fried dough. There are other names for fried dough that you may be familiar with. So, what are they?

Fried dough is also known by the names fry bread, fried bread, doughboys, elephant ears, scones, pizza fritte, frying saucers, and bunuelos. You have probably heard elephant ears a lot especially at fairs and festivals.

Depending on what region of the world you are in, fried dough goes by a different name. All the kinds of fried dough are pretty much the same except some are shaped differently. 

Fried dough has many names but it is all made the same way and that is by frying dough. All fried doughs are usually topped with sugar and/or cinnamon.

A doughnut is actually a version of fried dough. This is a piece of enriched dough that is deep fried and formed into a ring shape and when you get to their basic ingredients they are fried dough. 

What Is Funnel Cake Dough Made Of?

Elephant ears shouldn’t be confused with funnel cakes. Although similar, these are different deserts. An elephant ear is fried dough and funnel cakes are made a little differently. 

So, what are funnel cakes made of?

Funnel cakes are made from a batter of eggs, oil, sugar, vanilla, salt and milk. Fried dough is made from dough which is created from a flour and water mixture. That is why fried dough and funnel cakes are different.

Both fried dough and funnel cakes are typically covered in powdered sugar and cinnamon, but that is where the similarities end. They are made differently. 

Funnel cakes are made with a batter of eggs, milk, flour, salt, and baking powder and fried dough is made from dough that is well… fried. The batter for a funnel cake is poured through a funnel to make long and stringy lines. Elephant ears are made by flattening the fried dough and dropping it into oil. This is kind of like a flat cinnamon roll. 

Funnel cakes are lighter. As you can see, funnel cakes are different from fried dough because of how they are made. Funnel cakes are made with a different batter and shaped into long pieces of a dough-like dessert.

What Is Fried Dough Called At Fairs?

Fairs are a fun summertime activity. Carnival rides and vendor booths offer excitement for all ages. Then there is the food. Hot dogs, popcorn, and lemonade are all popular at fairs along with fried dough desserts. 

What is fried dough called at fairs?

At fairs, fried dough is often called elephant ears. It is dough which is flattened and dropped into oil to create a greasy and yummy dessert that is then topped with powdered sugar and cinnamon.

As we mentioned earlier, fried dough is also called elephant ears. Not to be confused with a funnel cake which we have already discussed is different from an elephant ear. These are sold at fairs all across the country. 

Different from funnel cakes, fried dough is a flat piece of fried dough topped with powdered sugar and cinnamon for a delicious treat. So, if you were to get fried dough at a fair, you would get an elephant ear.

Final Thoughts

So, fried dough isn’t the same as funnel cakes. Fried dough goes by several names, a popular one being elephant ears. Both are found at fairs and both are topped with powdered sugar and cinnamon but they are not the same thing. 

Fried dough is made with actual dough and funnel cakes are made with batter. Fried dough is flattened (sometimes rolled into balls or shaped differently according to where you get it) and funnel cakes are poured through a funnel to make long stringy pieces. 

Both fried dough and funnel cakes are delicious desserts, but they are in fact, different from one another and are not the same.

Hannah R.

Hey, I'm Hannah and I'm the founder of Get Eatin'.

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