How to Make Easy Elephant Ears Recipe

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elephant ear with brown sugar and cinnamon

Easy Elephant Ears 

I love when I can find a place where they are making elephant ears.  It’s my one favorite things to eat at a carnival.  Now you can make them at home easily.  Read below to see how you can make easy elephant ears for yourself, friends and family.

thawed bread dough

Do You Need To Make Your Own Dough?

You do not need to make your own down. These are easily made with frozen dough (that is thawed) and used to make these delicious elephant ears.

Can Puff Pastry Be Used?

It can. It is delicate, so watch it carefully while it is cooking. It will puff up, but be flaky and delicious.

bread disc

How Thin Does The Dough Need To Be?

Roll the dough to 1/8″ to 1/4″ thick for best crisp ears.

frying elephant ear

What Bread Recipe Can Be Used To Make These?

We have another recipe where we make our own dough to make these. You can also use your favorite bread recipe to make these as well.

Should Powdered Sugar or Granulated Sugar Be Used?

When you are topping your ears, you can use either sugar. Granulated white sugar will give you a crunchier taste than powdered.

cinnamon sugar elephant ear

What Toppings Can You Put On Them?

Fruit toppings are popular when at the carnival. You can easily get a favorite can of cherry pie filling, blueberry, apple or make your own. Cinnamon and sugar are a favorite to put on before the pie filling.

elephant ear with brown sugar and cinnamon
Print Recipe
5 from 2 votes

Easy Homemade Cinnamon Sugar Elephant Ears

Love carnival food? You can make easy elephant ears at home whenever you want. Enjoy fair food, without going to the fair. Read how.
Course: Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine: American
Author: Regina Sober




  • Spray a loaf pan with cooking spray and place the frozen dough into the loaf pan, covering with plastic wrap.
  • Allow to thaw and  rise, punching down at least once.
  • Once it is thawed, time to make elephant ears!
  • Cut the dough into  5-6 equal pieces.
  • Work the dough into small flat ‘pizza’ looking discs.
  • Work the dough as thin as you can get it.  It will rise up a bit when it cooks.
  • Have a plate with paper towels on it to use once the ears have cooked.
  • Pour oil into a pan so it’s about 1 inch deep (You’ll want a wide pan if you want to make more than one at a time), one at a time is easier to manage.
  • Turn oil on medium heat and allow oil to heat up.
  • Test a small piece of dough to see if it hot enough. It will begin to bubble and turn brown when the oil is hot enough. If it sinks, and no bubbles, oil is not hot enough.
  • Place one of the discs carefully into the oil and allow it to get golden brown (about 1-2 minutes).
  • Gently flip over with the tongs and allow to brown on the other side.
  • Remove from oil and place onto the plate and towels.
  • Sprinkle with 1-2 teaspoons of the cinnamon sugar mix.
  • Repeat until all ears are made.


YouTube video


Cooking Tips

  • Make the discs as thin as possible, they will puff a bit when cooking
  • It’s easier if you make one ear at a time, versus several
  • As the oil heats up, the ears will take less time to cook, so you will need to move quickly
  • If the oil is not hot enough and you put the dough in, they will taste like grease
  • Mix the cinnamon sugar to your liking
  • Before putting the the cinnamon sugar on, you could put melted butter on each elephant ear, and then the cinnamon sugar mix
Love carnival food? You can make easy elephant ears at home whenever you want. Enjoy fair food, without going to the fair. Read how.

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