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DeeDee Begay’s Navajo Frybread

This recipe was shared with us by Tina Begay, whose family has roots in three different tribal communities in Montana.


  • 8 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/3 cup dry milk
  • Shortening, for frying


  1. Combine all the ingredients except shortening in a large bowl.
  2. Add enough very hot water to make a sticky dough, mixing just until combined. (If you overmix the dough, the frybread will be stiff.)
  3. Melt a few tablespoons of shortening in a large skillet (cast iron works well for this) just until smoking.
  4. Reduce the heat to medium. Pinch off softball-sized pieces of dough and roll into balls.
  5. Working with one dough ball at a time, pat the ball into a 1/2-inch thick disk. Carefully place the disk into the hot shortening and fry, turning once, until each side is golden brown.
  6. Remove the frybread to a paper towel to drain and repeat the process with the remaining dough balls. Serve warm.