I love doughnuts. A lot. Yet I’m trying to eat a little better and eating lots of fried doughnuts isn’t exactly the best way to accomplish this goal. So I haven’t eaten a lot of doughnuts lately. I even went so far as to give up my precious glazed Old Fashioned Top Pot doughnuts from Starbucks. I make googly eyes at them every single time I see them in the pastry case, but I haven’t caved.
Last weekend, the many months without a doughnut finally got to me. I think it might have been the fact that I drove past Dunkin’ Donuts on the way home from work on Friday. Whatever the cause was, I needed doughnuts and wasn’t about to fry a batch of them myself or break down and head to Starbucks after so many months of good behavior.
Fortunately I remembered the Honey & Jam recipe for baked doughnuts that had been floating around Pinterest for a couple of weeks. Baked doughnuts? You’re probably thinking that those couldn’t possibly be good. You’re wrong, they’re delicious and a baked doughnut is better than no doughnut at all. One of my sisters was at my house when I made these doughnuts (okay, she and her husband actually stuck around for the doughnuts) and she thought they were better than fried! I won’t go quite that far as I do enjoy fried doughnuts but these were great and I will make them again.
They were also amazingly easy to make if you have a stand mixer. The dough came together in minutes and it wasn’t at all fussy to roll out either.
I would have prefered these glazed but I made them with cinnamon and sugar to appease my fiancé. He doesn’t eat any deep-fried food and probably hadn’t eaten a doughnut in 3 or 4 years, so I was willing to make them the way he likes them. Next time they’ll be glazed. Or half glazed and half cinnamon and sugar.
Baked Cinnamon Sugar Doughnuts
Recipe from Honey & Jam. That recipe was adapted from Doughnuts by Lara Ferroni.
Makes about 14 doughnuts (plus doughnut holes!)
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup whole milk, heated to 115 degrees F
- 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3 to 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour, divided, plus more for kneading
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, cut into 1 inch cubes
- 1 stick butter, melted
- 1 cup granulated sugar + 2 tablespoons cinnamon (more or less, depending on your taste), mixed together
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the egg and sugar on medium speed until blended, about 1 minute. Add the milk, yeast, salt and vanilla, and stir to blend. With the machine on low speed, add 2 cups of flour, about 1/2 cup at a time, and beat until the dough is thick and pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
- Switch to the dough hook. With the machine on medium speed, add the butter one piece at a time, and beat until no large chunks of butter are left in the bottom of the bowl, 3-5 minutes. Reduce speed to low and add the additional flour until the dough gathers around the hook and cleans the sides of the bowl. It will be soft and moist, but not overly sticky.
- Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead gently until the dough no longer sticks to your hands. Lightly grease a large mixing bowl.
- Transfer the dough to the bowl and turn to coat. Cover with a damp tea towel and let rise in a warm spot until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.
- Punch down the dough and roll out to 1/2 inch thick. With a doughnut or a cookie cutter, cut out 3 inch diameter rounds with 1 inch diameter holes.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the doughnuts at least 1 inch apart on the baking sheet. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit in a warm spot until doubled in size, about 25 minutes.
- Bake until the doughnuts are light golden brown, 5 to 8 minutes, being very careful not to over bake them.
- Immediately out of the oven, dip into butter and then dip directly into cinnamon sugar mixture.
- Best eaten fresh and warm.
And don’t forget, there’s one doughnut hole for every doughnut! I like them more than the doughnuts themselves.