Beignets are those cute little desserts that’s smothered in powdered sugar, sweet on the outside and soft on the inside, whereas munchkins are those little donuts to pop in your mouth on the go, while driving I might say. At times, when I have ordered beignets, they remind me of a munchkin. So, what is the difference? I have tasted and made both and I can honestly say that beignets are the winner even though they are closely related. Beignets uses more yeast than a munchkin and is hollow in the center as you bite into these babies. Nothing is better than traveling to New Orleans to taste the beignets in the heart of the French Quarter. Café du Monde is one of the best places to get beignets, they even have this café in the airport! There are dozens of cafés, restaurants, and coffee shops where you can grab a few beignets while walking and traveling around New Orleans. Many of these places in New Orleans make them light and airy, while some might not take the time to let the dough rise enough to create that somewhat hollow, soft interior, but it is still SO GOOD!
Munchkins are those mini donuts that are heavier in weight than beignets and are made plain, or with a glaze topped with sprinkles or without and have a different shape. Even though, the beignets are considered the “donut” of Louisiana, to some New Yorkers it is not. It is more in the family of a zeppole and funnel cake, two different countries and shapes, but similar cooking methods and topping. Remember when you would go to the Flea Market and get this big paper plate filled with funnel cake and a ton of powdered sugar on it, these are considered our beignets in New York. Yes! Beignets are made of a sweet dough, at times made with yeast, rolled out and cut into squares and then deep-fried. Don’t move from the pot when frying as beignets cook in seconds and they will darken quickly.
Try my recipe on beignets and share a picture or two with me in the comments section. Good Luck! “Beignet…done that!”