Exploring Why Churros Are So Popular – Crispy, Sweet, and Loved

If you’ve ever bitten into a crispy, chewy churro, you know why this tasty treat is so popular. These light, golden pastries have long been familiar to the Americas, Europe, and Asian countries. But today, churros have surged in popularity as an indulgence food everywhere. 

So, what makes churros so popular? Churros are the perfect breakfast or light snack. People love them because they are fried to a light golden brown in simmering hot oil, making them crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside. Furthermore, their shape makes them perfect for stuffing with decadent fillings and munching on the go. 

Dive in to find out more on why churros are so popular!

1. Their Shape

The simple shape of the churro is one of the primary reasons that makes it so popular. You see, the traditional Spanish churro is thin and slender. They are piped through a star-shaped funnel, giving it the perfect ridges that lend to its crispiness. Making churros is much like making French fries; they need to be soft and chewy in the center with a crispy outer layer! This perfect blend is what makes a churro so heavenly.

Elongated churros are also excellent for snacking on the go. Their shape makes them popular as handheld snacks at amusement parks and fairs. Unlike other pastries, a churro isn’t messy and doesn’t leave too much sugary trail around your mouth when you bite into it!

2. Chocolaterías and Churrerías

Both churros and chocolates are a popular sensation in Spain, and the Spanish often blend them, dipping fresh churros into thick, dark chocolate. If you dote on chocolate as much as Spanish, you won’t want to miss out on visiting their famous Chocolatería San Ginés in Madrid (open since 1984), where they serve churros and mugs of chocolate.

Chocolaterías are fancy places, but churros are also found in chuerrerías, or churro stalls. The difference is that chocolaterías always have chocolate with their churros, and churrerías don’t. Whether in a churrería, a festival, or a fancy chocolatería, churros can always be found in Spain throughout the year.

Churros are associated with celebration, fun, fairgrounds, and good times, so it’s no surprise that people associate them with happy social gatherings. 

3. Disneyland

Disneyland in Anaheim, California, is a place filled with eternal secrets, surprises, and fun. Here, you can also find some of the most delicious and unique churros in the world! Wherever you are in Disneyland, you are never too far from a churro.

If you’re ever visiting Disneyland, you don’t want to miss out on tasting mouthwatering cinnamon and sugar churros. Besides, you would also need to keep your eyes open for the occasional, limited specialty Disneyland churros! In Disneyland, you’ll get to experience churros that are out of this world, such as Sleeping Beauty Churros, Pecan Pie Churros, Fluffernutter Churros, Maple Bacon Churros, Power Stone Churros, and S’mores Churros!

What’s more, in 2020, Disneyland revealed the recipe for the churros they sell at their parks. As you might guess, the world rejoiced, and the internet swooned with bloggers posting their attempts at making Disney’s Churro Bites.

4. Chinese Claims

When it comes to food, people tend to become possessive. Every country seems to want to claim the sweet churros as their own, and a quick Google search proves that the world is divided in this matter. 

Some claim that the churro is a descendant of the Chinese youtiao. Youtiao is a pastry deep-fried in oil that looks like two long breadsticks. However, unlike churros, youtiao isn’t accompanied by sugar or chocolate. It is said that Portuguese sailors brought back the youtiao to the Iberian Peninsula, where it was adapted and changed to become sweeter.

5. Egyptian Churros?

So, are churros a Chinese invention? Not all are convinced, and so they have looked further back in history for answers. Some people have concluded that churros originated in Ancient Egypt. Believe it or not, paintings in the tomb of Ramses III show people working in a process that’s very similar to the way churros are made. If this is true, churro’s actual origin could be over 3,000 years ago!

6. Spanish Claims

The most widely held belief is that churros are Spanish. The world knows churros as Spanish doughnuts. Any Spaniard will tell you that Spain is the home of churros. It is believed that Spanish shepherds made and used churros as a substitute for fresh bread on their long journeys through the mountains. Surprisingly, the name churro comes from the Spanish words Churra and Navajo Churro, which are sheep with wooly hair found in Spain. These sheep have curly brown horns, which the churros were named after.

No matter where churros were invented, we know that eating churros with chocolate only began in Spain. As you know, the Spanish introduced chocolate to Europe after the conquest of the Aztecs in 1519. Then, in the 16th century, chocolate quickly became popular among the wealthy. And you can guess that it didn’t take long for the Spanish to realize that churros tasted way better dipped into a thick warm chocolate sauce! 

7. They Are Cousins Of Doughnuts

Churros are a close relative of doughnuts. Doughnuts and churros share similar recipes, and churros are more like doughnut sticks, while doughnuts are round in shape. There’s no question that doughnuts are one of the most popular snacks in the world. And we’ve already seen why churros are way more convenient to eat than a doughnut due to their shape. No wonder churros are popular!

8. They Are Innovative

Like all other popular foods, churros are innovative, so they never get boring. The traditional churro stick was deep-fried in oil and eaten plain or rolled in cinnamon sugar. Now, a churro comes with all kinds of toppings, colors, and extraordinary tastes.

9. They Vary Through Culture

Churros are popular because they can be adjusted to the various tastes and available ingredients throughout the world’s cultures. For example, in China, youtiao is dipped in rice congee or soya milk. Mexicans often serve their churros with dulce de leche or cajeta. If you are in Cuba, you might get your churros stuffed with fruits like guava or cheese if you happen to be in Nicaragua.

10. They Make Good Snacks

No one argues that churros make a great snack. Whether you’re in Disneyland, walking in the streets of China, attending a Spanish fair, or in a fancy chocolatéria in Madrid, churros are the perfect food to snack on. Churros are the ideal way to fulfill your sweet tooth craving! In addition, they are also convenient street food, making them more popular.

11. They Are Good For Breakfast

If you consider churros as a snack, think again; the churros can also be a breakfast item for many Americans. Considering that these are a kind of light pastry that’s also delicious, churros indeed make an excellent addition to the breakfast menu.

12. They Are A Comfort Food

It’s a scientific fact that eating foods that bring back memories of good times gives a feeling of well-being and consolation. Research has shown that comfort foods evoke associations of positive relationships, making us less lonely. 

The emotional satisfaction we get from some foods is often tied to our childhood experiences. For example, chicken soup can make you feel loved and cared for, and hotdogs can remind you of baseball games. Similarly, churros are often associated with friends and family, Disneyland, festivals, and fairs, making them the perfect comfort food for those days when you feel low. 

13. They Are Fried

It sounds like a simple thing, but the fact that churros are fried in oil is one of the main reasons they are so loved. People have always had an obsession with deep-fried food, and anything deep-fried is so, so savory. Three simple reasons why fried food tastes good are that it is crunchy, melts in your mouth, and contributes to the overall flavor of the food.

14. They Are Easy To Make

Another reason why churros are popular is that they are easy to make. Today, tons of recipes and tutorials online teach you how to make the perfect churros at home.

15. They Are Delicious

Not all of us might agree on the history of churros, how they should look, or how they should be eaten. But no one argues that churros are the taste of heavenly goodness. You only feel happiness as your teeth crunch through the outside and sink into a soft, warm churro. More and more people are finding out about this delicious treat and trying it out, making it one of the most popular foods.

If you have never had the pleasure of sinking your teeth into a fresh, yummy churro, now is the time to treat yourself! Continuing to grow in popularity, churros are spreading more joy throughout the world. Indeed, churros are a great way to share love and enjoy life!

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This article was co-authored by our team of writers and editors who share one thing in common: their passion for food and drinks!

JC Franco
Editor | + posts

JC Franco works as a New York-based editor at Foodrinke, driven by his lifelong love for food. His culinary journey began in childhood, as he eagerly assisted his mother with her local sandwich and bakery business, relishing every opportunity to sample her creations. Known among family and friends as an easy eater, JC has a particular affinity for Chinese, Italian, Mexican, and Peruvian cuisine. At Foodrinke, he channels his passion for food into his work, sharing his enthusiasm and knowledge with readers.