Easy Air Fryer Fried Dough

Use your Air Fryer to make up a delicious batch of fried bread dough or doughboys for a fast and delicious treat! Cover your Air Fryer doughboys in cinnamon and sugar for a sweet flavor or olive oil and garlic salt for a savory option.

What are other names for Fry Bread?

The funny thing about homecooked foods like this that have been around forever is that everyone seems to have a different name for them. I like doughboys—it’s cute. But you might have grown up calling it fried bread, fry bread, fry dough, fried dough, elephant ears, Utah scones, frying saucers, or even beaver tails!

This recipe is in partnership with Rhodes Bake-N-Serve one of my personal favorite products that I have been enjoying since I was a child.

Do you love using Rhodes Bake-N-Serve as I do? Check out our multiple recipes featuring Rhodes.

a bowl of bread dough fried in the air fryer and dipped in cinnamon and sugar.

There is nothing quite like the smell of bread, is there? Something about homemade bread makes everyone come running to the kitchen.

Although my mom didn’t bake, she did often have a package of Rhodes Bake-N-Serv frozen bread dough in the freezer. Mostly she used the dough to make up batches of fresh bread for snacks or breakfast. We LOVED it. We would smother it with honey or peanut butter and hoover it down.

a bag of rhodes dough ready for the air fryer

Sometimes she would let us fry up the bread dough into amazing little rounds of fried dough ball goodness. One of us would form the little round bundles of dough, another would fry them, and another would coat them with cinnamon and sugar.

The BEST assembly plant in the world. With 10 kids, though, you can assemble A LOT of stuff in a quick hurry. We could create a full 5-room fort in less than 15 minutes.

little balls of bread dough waiting for the air fryer.

I rarely make fried bread dough for my own family. Which is really a shame. But, I am not particularly fond of pulling out my skillet and going through the trouble and mess of deep frying.

But I found that the Air Fryer works like a charm to create the same little bundles of carb goodness without the mess of deep frying and without the huge amounts of oil.

I have NEVER created bread dough for the purpose of making fried bread dough. I always use Rhodes frozen dough. Their dough is just so dang handy and tasty. Plus, all of the good memories from my childhood need to stay strong and fresh in my mind.

In just 15 minutes and a spray of olive oil, my little bundles of bread are fried up to a nice golden color and ready for a quick brush of butter and sprinkle of cinnamon sugar.

Bread dough fried in the air fryer and coated with cinnamon and sugar.

I’m covering ours with cinnamon and sugar and serving them as a breakfast treat just like I had them as a child. But, you could totally swap out the butter and cinnamon and sugar for a coating of olive oil and garlic salt and serve them alongside supper. Those would be super tasty!

Some great toppings for your Air Fryer Fried Dough:

The sky’s the limit when it comes to toppings for your Air Fryer Doughboys. I love the classic cinnamon sugar topping, but you can keep it simple with just butter or add some honey, jam, maple syrup, chocolate sauce, Nutella, or anything else you come up with.

  • Sweet Toppings:
    • Cinnamon and sugar
    • Honey or maple syrup
    • Chocolate sauce
    • Nutella or other chocolate-hazelnut spreads
    • Fruit jams or preserves
    • Whipped cream and fresh berries
    • Powdered sugar glaze
  • Savory Toppings:
    • Garlic salt and olive oil
    • Grated cheese (like Parmesan or cheddar)
    • Cream cheese, plain or flavored
    • Pesto or marinara sauce
    • Shredded chicken or pulled pork
    • Chopped herbs (like parsley or cilantro)
    • Sliced olives or jalapeños
  • Unique Combinations:
    • Peanut butter and sliced bananas
    • Apple slices with caramel sauce
    • Bacon bits with maple syrup
    • Goat cheese and honey
    • Smoked salmon and cream cheese

How to Store:

  • Cool Completely: Allow the doughboys to cool to room temperature before storing.
  • Airtight Container: Store them in an airtight container to keep them fresh.
  • Refrigerate: If not consuming within a day, refrigerate for up to 3 days.
  • Freeze for Longer Storage: For longer storage, wrap them individually in plastic wrap and then place them in a freezer bag. They can be frozen for up to 2 months.

Reheating Tips:

  • Air Fryer: Reheat in the air fryer at 350°F for a few minutes until warmed through. This helps retain the crispy texture.
  • Oven: Preheat the oven to 350°F and warm them on a baking sheet for about 5-10 minutes.
  • Microwave: For a quick option, microwave them for 20-30 seconds, but be aware this method might not keep them as crispy.

Air Fryer Fried Bread Dough

| 16 doughboys
Prep Time | 5 minutes
Cook Time | 9 minutes
Bread proofing time | 1 hour
Print Recipe Pin Recipe
Use your Air Fryer to make tasty fried bread dough (or DoughBoys) in a quick hurry and without the mess of a skillet and oil!


We use a simple but fantastic little air fryer. Love this one!


  • 1 loaf Rhodes frozen bread dough thawed overnight in the fridge
  • cooking spray
  • cinnamon and sugar optional
  • melted butter optional
Check out our Kitchen Reference Guide for help with unfamiliar terms.


  • Seperate your bread dough into 16 pieces (simply cut in half and cut in half and repeat until you get 16).
  • Set the 16 pieces on a cookie sheet sprayed with cooking spray. Spray them again with spray and cover with plastic wrap to rise.
  • Let rise in a warm spot for 1 hour.
  • Form each of the pieces into small circles of dough and let rest for 10 minutes.
  • Preheat your Air Fryer to 350 degrees, spray the pan and sides of the Air Fryer basket with cooking spray.
  • Place the circles of dough in the Air Fryer. You want it to be full but still have room around each of the bundles of dough.
  • Spray the tops of the dough with cooking spray.
  • Fry in the Air Fryer for 9 minutes flipping the bundles after five. Repeat with remaining dough.
  • Optional, brush with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar.


“These were fantastic! I did 8 dough balls, so they were closer to the size of fairground elephant ears.
They looked very light after cooking, but once they were slathered in butter, cinnamon and sugar, they were perfect. “~Meg

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About The Author

3 thoughts on “Easy Air Fryer Fried Dough”

  1. We used to call them pizza boys because after the dough was fried we would put spaghetti sauce and grated parmesan cheese on them. Yummy!

  2. 5 stars
    These were fantastic! I did 8 dough balls, so they were closer to the size of fairground elephant ears.
    They looked very light after cooking, but once they were slathered in butter, cinnamon and sugar, they were perfect.

  3. Oh the memories! Thank you so much for this recipe, it brought back so many wonderful memories of childhood. These are such a treat. We called them doughboys here in RI. I miss the local Portuguese festivals where doughboys are an absolute must! I will be making these often 👍👍😊

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