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Baked Doughnuts…Baked Goodness

Baked Donuts

I know, it seems very strange to put "baked" and "doughnuts" in the same sentence and then expect you to believe me when I say they were good…but they were! But why would I turn a completely good fried piece of Americana into a baked good? Well, for once I was curious to try another recipe after my first success last year. I also have the same reason as last year for trying baked doughnuts yet again. My parents are coming to visit for a while and they love waking up to the scent of nutmeg, cardamom, and cinnamon….and my dad can’t resist the attraction of a good doughnut. However, they both have health issues that I have to take ito consideration when baking and cooking (heart and diabetes). Thus, the reason why I wanted to make a healthier version, and made this other version as a test run.

Looking online you will find dozens of recipes for baked doughnuts but how would you know if they are any good? Well, first you can always send me an email and I will force myslef to help you out and make a few batches, just to be on the safe side. On a more serious note, among all the interesting recipes I found online, I recognized two bloggers I had already followed in marbled chocolate cake goodness so I felt confident they would not stir me in a bad direction. One thing neither of us will tell you is that they "are exactly like doughnuts". The obvious reason being that they are not frying involved and like my predecessors I went for the cinnamon sugar topping instead of a powdered sugar glaze….sounded lighter. The resulting treats were not as soft and buttery to the mouth as the ones you get at Krispy Kreme for example but they make a good substitute when the craving hits. They are a tad chewier and more like soft pillows of dough but they were quickly devoured by our guests sunday morning, which is always a good sign.

Baked Donuts

Baked Doughnuts, adapted from this recipe:

1 1/3 cups warm milk, 95 to 105 degrees (divided)
1 packet active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
2 tablespoons butter
2/3 cup sugar
2 eggs
5 cups all-purpose flour
A pinch or two of nutmeg, freshly grated
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon

Place 1/3 cup of the warm milk in the bowl of an electric mixer. Stir in the yeast and sugar and set aside for five minutes or so to let it proof. Stir the butter into the remaining cup of warm milk and add it to the yeast mixture. With a fork, stir in the eggs, flour, nutmeg, and salt – just until the flour is incorporated. With the dough hook attachment of your mixer beat the dough for a few minutes at medium speed. Adjust the dough texture by adding flour a few tablepsoons at a time or more milk. You want the dough to pull away from the sides of the mixing bowl and eventually become supple and smooth. Turn it out onto a floured counter-top, knead a few times (the dough should be barely sticky), and shape into a ball.
Transfer the dough to a buttered (or oiled) bowl, cover, put in a warm place, and let rise for an hour or until the dough has roughly doubled in size.
Punch down the dough and roll it out 1/2-inch thick on your floured countertop. With a 2-3 inch cookie cutter, stamp out circles in the dough . Transfer the circles to a parchment-lined baking sheet and stamp out the smaller inner circles using a smaller cutter. If you cut the inner holes out any earlier, they become distorted when you attempt to move them. Cover with a clean cloth and let rise for another 45 minutes.
Bake in a 375 degree oven until the bottoms are just golden, 8 to 10 minutes – start checking around 8. While the doughnuts are baking, place the butter in a medium bowl. Place the sugar and cinnamon in a separate bowl.
Remove the doughnuts from the oven and let cool for just a minute or two. Dip each one in the melted butter and a quick toss in the sugar bowl. Eat immediately if not sooner.
Makes 1 1/2 – 2 dozen medium doughnuts.

– as Heidi suggests, it is best to do them the day you plan on eating them and not too early.
– remove them from the oven before you think they are done, they will continue to bake a little.
– make sure the holes in the middle are cut out pretty big as the donuts contine to rise as they bake and tend to swallow them back.
– you can make your dough, roll and cut out the donuts the night before and let them do their second rising in the fridge, covered. Set them out on the countertop an hour before baking so the yeast can wake up again….and you by the same time.

P.S: Last month I woke up to an early Christmas present: a nice lady named Tammy Wood emailed me with a beautiful collage of my pictures as a banner/header for my blog. She took pity on my attempts at spiffying the blog and "just made it one night"….Turns out she had come here via a common acquaintance, Aimee from Under The High Chair. I was beaming, fidgeting, amazed at her generosity. She is a professional who took the time to help me out, just because….! I quickly put it up and after much internal debate on my part I asked her if it were possible to change the pics to some of my favorites, which she promptly did upon her return from vacation. So peeps, look up, the images are different….I like both but this one is my favorite. Thank you Tammy…It is with people like you that humanity still goes round.

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Mallow September 5, 2007 um 4:29 am

Those are gorgeous! I have been looking forward to trying that recipe the next time I have a group of people to feed in the morning!

Brilynn September 5, 2007 um 4:52 am

They look great!
Maybe if you called them something other than donuts, they wouldn’t lead to any false hopes about baked donuts being able to taste like the real thing. If you invent a name, they’ll just be good for what they are.

Rosa's Yummy Yums September 5, 2007 um 6:18 am

Wow, they look fabulous! I am going to try that original recipe as, although I love the deep-fried version, those doghnuts have aroused my attention. They are less messy to make and healthier…

Amy September 5, 2007 um 6:51 am

The banner looks great! 🙂 I’ve been eyeing this recipe for a while too! I love doughnuts but just can’t afford to eat krispy kremes all day. 😛

Peabody September 5, 2007 um 7:46 am

My mom used to make baked doughnuts…everytime it snowed. Then we moved to Arizona 🙁
Your doughnuts look devine.

Marta September 5, 2007 um 9:29 am

They look really wonderful. I’ll try to cook them soon.


Anonymous September 5, 2007 um 10:22 am

Great idea to dip them in melted butter….yum 🙂

Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) September 5, 2007 um 10:45 am

The new banner looks wonderful! As for the doughnuts, unfortunately there is no doughnut that’s healthy for diabetics, but for everyone else it’s great to have an alternative to the traditional fried pastry.

Madame K September 5, 2007 um 12:39 pm

Oh my gosh! I can just feel the crunch of sugar on my teeth.

Nicely done.

Anonymous September 5, 2007 um 12:50 pm

They look marvelous! I had first seen them in Heidi´s blog and was quite smitten with them, now I´ll just have to try them as soon as possible.

Anonymous September 5, 2007 um 1:06 pm

I’m not a fan of Crispy creme but I love beignets…and these look like them! Gotta give this a try. this will save me from thinking of how to dispose of the frying oil! 🙂

Unknown September 5, 2007 um 1:22 pm

I’ve always wondered if this were possible but had no idea where to begin. I just hate frying at home – it stinks up my kitchen and I just have not perfected the art of it. So this is lovely.

Mercedes September 5, 2007 um 1:36 pm

Oh, be still my heart, I’ve been wanting to make these ever since Heidi posted about them. I actually don’t like Krispy Kreme’s- more than one bite and I feel like I’m going into insulin shock, and I also think a lot of fried things can be successfully baked.
Have fun with your parents- I hope we’ll be seeing some of the lovely (and healthy) things you stir up for them!

Anonymous September 5, 2007 um 1:59 pm

oh my darling tartlette, i can just imagine myself with a ice cold glass of milk and a plate of these YUM!

when I was a teenager I worked at a dock selling doughnuts to the fisherman coming in at the wee hrs of the mornign. we fried them though, still so goot!

Deborah September 5, 2007 um 3:04 pm

Oh, you are killing me here!! I still have hours until lunch time and now I am hungry!

Anonymous September 5, 2007 um 3:17 pm

Oh my. I’m increasingly intrigued by yeasted things that are not exactly breads, and these are definitely going on that to-do list. Wonderful!

Belinda September 5, 2007 um 3:31 pm

They look so beautiful, with the sprinkling of sugar on top, and the cute little round shape…irresistible. Of course, everything you post about always looks impossible to resist! 🙂 Your parents are in for a treat when they wake up to the heavenly baking aromas from your kicthen, that’s for certain!

Warda September 5, 2007 um 3:50 pm

I love your first picture. Fried beignets are actually the only fried food that I enjoy eating without feeling bad about it. Now that donuts are baked, it’s even better.

Jim September 5, 2007 um 3:54 pm

Guilt-free doughnuts?!

This is madness!

Madness I intend to try ASAP. 🙂

Emily September 5, 2007 um 3:57 pm

These will definitely be on the table Christmas morning. Yum!

Elle September 5, 2007 um 5:01 pm

What great looking donuts. I like it that they are not fried. Cute, too.
Your banner is really beautiful & it’s great that Tammy included that caramel sauce over cheesecake…one of the yummiest in the blogosphere in my opinion.

Abby September 5, 2007 um 5:12 pm

I love doughnuts – growing up in the land of Krispy Kreme dontcha know – but I try to stay away bc of the calories! I saw Heidi make these back when and thought 'what a great idea.' Now that I’ve seen you make them with success I’ve gotta try it, too!

Jenny September 5, 2007 um 5:40 pm

Wow! Just when I started telling myself that I need to cut back on my "to bake list" you come out with these! Now the list got bigger!
Thanks! hugs and kisses

Katie September 5, 2007 um 6:36 pm

Those look fantastic! I have added it to my pile of 'to make' recipes. The blog headre looks very professional too, love the photos your chose.

Nora B. September 5, 2007 um 9:16 pm

They look just like the real thing! I would like to try making these, and maybe pipe in some custard or raspberry jam.

And the banner looks terrific!

eatme_delicious September 5, 2007 um 11:48 pm

Yum those look amazing! I was looking through Martha Stewart’s baking book the other day and saw "sugar buns" which seem to be baked doughnuts. I really want to try making those, and now must save your recipe too. 🙂

Lindsay Blau Portnoy September 6, 2007 um 2:51 am

These recipes are dangerous to have access to!

Karen Baking Soda September 6, 2007 um 6:49 am

Scorn! Don’t do that to me…I am on my second cup of coffee without having breakfast, reading blogs and then Ouch, this first picture!!
My kids loooove donuts (doughnuts?) I don’t but these are baked…so that means I will have to try them. Asap. At least that’s what I am thinking now… Doing the math..

Love your new look! Blog readers are just a great bunch of people! Kudos to Tammy!

Aimée September 6, 2007 um 12:45 pm

I little bird has been whispering in my ear recently about making donuts and seeing your photos confirms it: I must create some soon!

My jaw did drop when I saw Tammy’s name on your blog…and the whole www got a lot smaller. How nice of her to do that for you!!
BTW guess where she was vacationing? Here in Montreal with me-we ate up a storm!
LOVE the header.

Michelle Frae Cummings September 6, 2007 um 7:32 pm

thanks for sharing such mouth watering recipes! I love them all!

Erin September 6, 2007 um 8:22 pm

I want to make doughnuts quite badly, but I’m torn now between this recipe and frying them. I think I need to do both!

RedBessBonney September 6, 2007 um 9:20 pm

These look delicious, and I can’t wait to try to make them!

June September 6, 2007 um 10:23 pm

The doughnuts look so good and your pictures, throughout the blog, are amazing! I wish I was half has good as you!

Cynthia September 6, 2007 um 11:01 pm

I’ve bookmarked this recipe and will definitely try my hand at these soft pillows of dough.

I wish I could pop one in my mouth right now!

Anonymous September 7, 2007 um 2:29 am

Helen, these are absolutely gorgeous! And definitely worthwhile for me as I’m trying to cut all deep-frying out of my diet!

marissa | Rae Gun Ramblings September 7, 2007 um 3:52 am

I will definately be trying these this weekend mmm mmmm

Anonymous September 7, 2007 um 5:37 am

The donuts look so tempting! And the banner is fabulous…what a kind person 🙂

Barbara September 7, 2007 um 9:08 am

The banner looks great Helen. I avoidn donuts because they are fried. I guess I could eat these though.

Anonymous September 7, 2007 um 12:55 pm

Superbes Helen. Ca me donne envie d’en faire. Ceux de ma maman sont extras, et ca fait une eternite que je n’en ai pas manges.

Anonymous September 7, 2007 um 2:25 pm

ooohhh … I love donuts … those are so gorgeous… I could eat the whole bagful of it with tea or coffee.

Anita September 7, 2007 um 4:15 pm

They look just scrumptious! Thank you for doing all that rigorous testing:) to give us this gorgeous result!

african vanielje September 7, 2007 um 5:55 pm

Tartlette, I love your blog. I want to come and camp in your kitchen. I bet you’re one of those peolpe whao always smells of cinnamon and vanilla sugar. Yum! Thanks for putting up a link for TGRWT (apple & Lavender). I hope you are concocting something as we speak. Have a great weekend

Anonymous September 7, 2007 um 10:22 pm

Yeah! Doughnuts without frying. I have serious trouble with frying, so I’ll have to give these a go. Your banner looks fabulous!

Stella September 8, 2007 um 4:49 pm

GOsh, I’m practically biting my fingers just by staring at your doughnuts! They sound sensational!

MyKitchenInHalfCups September 9, 2007 um 1:57 pm

There is so much here Helene I don’t know where to start. I’m looking forward to all the goodies like this you come up with for your parents visit! I really like the looks of these doughnuts.
The thing I find most wonderful about the blogs is seeing that people are really beautiful all around the world! The banner is terrific!

Anonymous September 10, 2007 um 1:20 am

I love homemade donuts. These look delicious 🙂
I’m a new visitor to your blog. It’s so nice. The photos, writing, everything..just beautiful 🙂

Lis September 10, 2007 um 10:43 am

Holy cow those look wonderful. And something that could be accomplished in many home kitchens! I think I’d prefer the softer and slightly chewier version anyway.. YUM!


Anonymous September 10, 2007 um 5:43 pm

Helen, my mouth is watering! But a question for you: do you think these could be made with some apple cider substituted for the milk? I had some apple donuts recently that were outstanding and would love to try to replicate them (or at least get close). Please tell me if, in your professional opinion, you think this would work and, if so, in what proportions.
Thanks! Anne Marie

Helene September 10, 2007 um 5:50 pm

Anne Marie: I think apple cider donuts work well for fried donuts, but there is nothing wrong with experimenting for the baked ones. I would do half milk and half cider and see how the recipe holds up for rolling and shaping. Then on other batches, add more cider and see how the dough holds again.

KitchenNut September 12, 2007 um 3:15 pm

Oh, these look awesome! I have been on a hunt for a good baked doughnut! Thanks so much!!

Anonymous September 12, 2007 um 7:58 pm

To quote Homer Simpson, ummm doughnuts..! However, I have a question as well. Is adding nutmeg an absoulte must. I am not a huge fan and was wondering if it would take away from the flavor. Thanks.

Dwacon September 13, 2007 um 12:38 am

Yum, my favorite!

Anonymous September 13, 2007 um 5:23 pm

These look fabulous! Can I make them by hand (without a dough hook attachment)?

Helene September 13, 2007 um 5:49 pm

Silverbackg1: you can totally do away without the nutmeg and use any spice you like!

Brandy: kneadig by hand is perfectly fine!

Anonymous September 21, 2007 um 7:14 pm

OMG I really like ur blog!!!
U can visit me…pls??
See Ya…bb…

How To Eat A Cupcake October 9, 2007 um 12:36 am

Yay! I love baking and I love doughnuts. Hurray for both! These are going on my "Things-To-Bake" list!

Anonymous October 26, 2007 um 7:01 am

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Anonymous October 26, 2007 um 5:57 pm

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Anonymous October 26, 2007 um 7:10 pm

zaisEp Magnific!

Anonymous October 26, 2007 um 7:29 pm

Good job!

Anonymous October 27, 2007 um 7:08 pm

Please write anything else!

Anonymous October 27, 2007 um 7:50 pm

Wonderful blog.

Anonymous October 27, 2007 um 7:57 pm

Good job!

Anonymous October 28, 2007 um 2:31 pm

Nice Article.

Anonymous October 30, 2007 um 6:05 am

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Anonymous October 30, 2007 um 9:20 am

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Anonymous October 30, 2007 um 1:14 pm

Please write anything else!

Anonymous October 31, 2007 um 6:20 pm

GEMyXi Thanks to author.

Anonymous October 31, 2007 um 6:50 pm

actually, that’s brilliant. Thank you. I’m going to pass that on to a couple of people.

Anonymous November 6, 2007 um 2:07 am


KayKat January 8, 2008 um 8:29 am

Fabulous! I’ve never been a big doughnuts person, but I’m definitely trying these 🙂

thomastrails July 12, 2008 um 5:25 pm

I made your recipe today and per your suggestion, let them rise overnight in the fridge. They were delicious!

madhu April 22, 2009 um 11:49 am

Finally a doughnut that’s not fried!!! Thanks a million. Would like to share some observations with you. I find that American cakes recipes have vast amounts of sugar in the cake batter and frosting. I find that sugar drowns the delicate flavor of cakes, say a simple pound cake. Would love to hear your view on this. Let me know. Would love to share my pound cake recipe with you and get your opinion on it.

Emily September 1, 2009 um 11:08 pm

Ooh, these look delicious and way better for you than fried donuts. Quick question, I noticed you also baked the small circles of dough that you cut out from the middle of the doughnut. How long do you bake them for?

Anonymous August 20, 2011 um 6:44 pm

I cannot WAIT to try these!!

Jess August 28, 2012 um 3:00 am

Awesome donuts just made them! I let them sit overnight in the fridge since they didnt seem to rise all that much. They came out super fluffy! I ate one plain and they also make yummy sweet rolls.

Unknown February 22, 2013 um 1:56 pm

I will give these a try. I have been wanting to make doughnuts for ages. the idea of small ones really appeals and a squirt of jam…yum

Meagan January 17, 2017 um 12:21 am

I just made these this morning and YUMMY! So delicious! Thank you for the recipe!

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