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Mexican Conchas (Sweet buns)

When I was looking for some Mexican-inspired desserts for Mike’s potluck, I ran across a recipe for Mexican Conchas. Have you ever heard of these? They are sweet buns. They looked so cute and fairly easy to make so I decided to go for it.

I love the shell designs on top and also the colorful topping. That is not something you see everyday.
Emily and I have really gotten a lot of use out of the new Kitchenaid mixer. We’ve made a lot of yeast dough recipes lately. And frosting. And some cookies. And on and on.
What should we make next?

Mexican Conchas Sweet Bread

Mexican Conchas Sweet Bread

Yield: 16 buns
Prep Time: 2 hours
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 20 minutes

Mexican Conchas are traditionally found in Mexican markets and are named for the shape of their topping, which looks much like a shell. Use your imagination to come up with the shell designs. Perfect for Cinco de Mayo celebrations.


Sweet Buns

  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm water, 110 - 115 degrees F
  • 1/2 cup lukewarm milk, 110 - 115 degrees F
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Sugar Cookie Topping

  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup margarine
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • gel food coloring


To Make the Buns

  1. Dissolve yeast in warm water in the bowl of stand mixer. Add milk sugar, butter, salt egg, and 2 cups of flour. Stir together until well combined.
  2. Switch to the dough hook attachment and add the rest of the flour. Knead on medium speed for 3 minutes until the dough pulls away from the side of the bowl. Add more flour, if needed.
  3. Place the dough in a large, oiled bowl and turn the dough over to coat both side. Cover with greased plastic wrap and place in warm place to rise until doubled in size.

To Make the Sugar Cookie Topping

  1. beat the sugar, margarine and vanilla until light and fluffy. Add flour and mix until thick. Divide dough into three equal pieces and place each piece in a plastic sandwich bag. Add a few drops of food coloring gel and squish the dough until evenly colored. You may need to add more flour if the dough is too soft.
  2. When the dough has risen, divide it into 16 even pieces. Form each piece of dough into a bun by tucking the corners under. (Do not roll between palms because this will make the dough tough.) Place the buns onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  3. Take the sugar cookie topping and divide into 16 even pieces. Take each piece of dough and press it between your palms until it forms a cookie disc shape. Moisten one side slightly and place it on top of each bun, wet side down. This will help the topping adhere to the bun. Use a cookie cutter or a knife to lightly score rings or swirls into the top of the cookie topping to resemble conch shells. Let buns rise in a warm place for approximately 40 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Bake buns for 18-20 minutes until lightly brown on the bottom.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 16 Serving Size: 1 grams
Amount Per Serving: Unsaturated Fat: 0g

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