Puff Puff (Nigerian Deep Fried Dough Balls) Recipe

Puff Puff recipe is very easy to prepare and is a well-liked African street snack.

Apart from Africa, am yet to find any culture in the world that does not have a recipe for this fried dough.

Nigerian puff puff is a version of fried dough that is chewy and soft with a yeasty center.

This Nigerian snack is one of the country’s favorite common snacks that are loved by everybody.

Most people have different spellings and name for it-the Hausa name is Panke and kids unknowingly call it kpof kpof (lol)

What Does Puff Puff Mean?

It is the simplest of recipes made up of wet bread dough, flour, water, salt, yeast, and sugar, then deep-fried.

This traditional snack is always included in the list of the top 3 snacks at Nigerian occasions.

The History of Puff Puff in Nigeria (West Africa)

It originates in West Africa from countries like Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Cameroon, and Ghana.

Similar to many other West African dishes like jollof rice, its genesis is normally opposed with many countries declaring to be the first to come up with the best recipe.

I cannot attest where it originates from, do you know? If yes, then let me know in the comment section. I take great pleasure in reading from you.

On the other hand, you can make this snack your own by using the following ingredients;

  • Milk and egg
  • Self-raising flour
  • Fresh pepper
  • Cinnamon
  • Baking Powder
  • Without yeast and beer
  • Onion and pepper
  • Vanilla and whole wheat.

Puff Puff Pastry Recipe

Different African countries have their special version of making this African dough balls.

We have the Nigerian, Ghanaian and Cameroon puff puff recipe, etc.

However, Puff puff can be prepared in a variety of ways;


  • ChocoPuff
  • With coconut
  • PizPuff
  • With banana
  • Using sausage stick
  • With minced meat

Recipe for the Nigerian classic Puff Puff


  • 2 cups (250 g) all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons of dry powdered instant yeast
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg (optional)
  • ½ cup granulated sugar (or to your taste)
  • A pinch of salt (optional)
  • Lukewarm water
  • Vegetable Oil

5 Things to Note on How to Make Puff Puff

  1. To test if the oil is ready for frying, put a little quantity of pastry dough into it. The formed dough will instantly rise to the surface of the oil, to show that the oil is ready for frying.
  2. The pastry will stay at the bottom of the pan if the oil is not adequately hot and will not go up. When this occurs and you continue to fry, the balls will soak the oil even before they fry appropriately.
  3. If you are using dry powdered instant yeast, then your dough will rise in about 30-45 minutes. But if you are using the traditional yeast that looks like a paste, mix it with lukewarm water and set aside.
  4. Then, add the yeast when you are adding water to the mix. On the other hand, if you want to get softballs, add 10 or 15 minutes to the normal rising time
  5. Lessen the heat if the oil becomes too hot, or else the balls will turn brown very fast without being properly cooked on the inside
  6. Finally, keep turning the balls continually so that they can fry properly on every side

How do I Make Puff Puff?

  1. Firstly, in a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients-flour, yeast, sugar, spices, and salt. Combine thoroughly,
  2. Secondly, begin to add the warm water into the mix slowly; mixing with your hands until the mix forms a smooth and consistent paste without lumps
  3. After that, cover the bowl with foil paper or a clean damp napkin in a warm place.
  4. Lastly, let the dough rise for about 30 to 45 minutes. You will notice air bubbles in it

How to Make Puff Puff Round

Making round puff puff is an art and it comes with practice. If you make once and they turn flat, check the yeast used.

If the yeast is good and not expired (I like to use instant yeast), then keep trying and you’ll sure get it right with more practice.


  1. Firstly, use your hands or an ice cream spoon to scoop some batter.
  2. Secondly, form small balls and deep fry in hot vegetable oil
  3. Then, turn the balls occasionally until golden brown
  4. After that, place the softballs on paper towels to drain the excess oil.
  5. Finally, coat with granulated or icing sugar (optional) and serve with any drink of your choice

Dough not Rising? Find Out Why

The most important ingredient is the YEAST. If the yeast is not or cannot be activated properly, the dough will not rise.

Therefore, your puff puff will be naturally flat since the dough did not rise.

Another tip is, you need a lot of oil with the right temperature. This is quite important because if the oil is not hot enough, then the puff puff can soak up so much oil.

Alternatively, if the oil is too hot, it can lead to puff puff being burnt on the outside but still raw on the inside.

  • Did you enjoy my recipe? Why not give it a try. Kindly click the share buttons and drop a comment below. I take pleasure in reading from you.

Thanks for visiting 9jafoods today.

Picture of puff puff
Picture of puff puff