Baked Cinnamon Sugar Doughnuts

I really like baking doughnuts because I can usually save some calories & fat from frying and splurge on the doughnut icing. I find that it’s usually the icing that makes the baked doughnut taste magnificent. But here…we have something different. A cake based doughnut with just a cinnamon + sugar topping. Will it be as magnificent?

You best believe! It might be the closest baked doughnut to a fried doughnut I’ve had. The cake part is imparted with flavor thanks to a combo of cinnamon  & nutmeg. And that spongey dense texture? I die. I’m sure the cinnamon-sugar binder (butter) helps!

I halved this recipe because….well…you know most people (namely ME) can’t be trusted with 12 cinnamon sugar doughnuts in their possession.

What else is new?

And we’re off!

 

Ingredient gathering tiiiiime.

Dry ingredients get mixed real quick. Stir to combine.

Buttermilk, egg & vanilla. STIR.

Wet is introduced to dry.

Batter goes into a prepared doughnut pan.

Topping gets whipped up. Melt butter, stir cinnamon in with sugar. Done did.

Doughnuts are out of the oven. Let them cool for a few minutes.

Brush the top of each doughnut and dip!

One at a time.

Until you have 6 doughnuts.

And before they even get plated, you have 5 1/2. This was designed to happen.

Now you’re ready to do a crossword puzzle, drink some coffee and….

EAT FIVE DOUGHNUTS.  Just go with it.

Oh, and if you want to make fried doughnuts you should check out my Farm stand Buttermilk Doughnut recipe. Amaze.

Baked Cinnamon Sugar Doughnuts

makes 6

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 extra-large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the topping

  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

For the doughnuts: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Use a baker’s spray to coat doughnut pan.

Sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in a mixing bowl.

Whisk together the egg, milk, melted butter and vanilla extract in a medium bowl or liquid measuring cup. Pour into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined.

Fill the wells of the doughnut pans a bit more than three-quarters full with the batter. Bake for 15-17 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the wall of a doughnut comes out clean and the doughnuts are puffed and lightly browned. Let them cool (in the pan) for 5 minutes, then gently invert the doughnuts onto a rimmed baking sheet.

While the doughnuts are cooling, make the topping.

Whisk together the sugar and cinnamon in a medium bowl.

Brush the warm doughnuts with the melted butter, then dip them into the cinnamon-sugar mixture on one or both sides. Serve warm.

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115 Comments

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  • February 13, 2013

    These look zo yummy! I am nog a big fan of donuts, but these I am gonna to ma defenitly! Love cake ;-) Now I just have to find donut-mold!

  • February 13, 2013

    Oh, they look amazing! I am really into cinnamon lately so these will be made :)

    Love your blog, it’s my favourite one!

    Greetings from snowy Germany,
    Valeska

  • February 13, 2013

    I love this recipe and would love to try it. Can you please let me know how much gram is in 1 cup? I have seen variations between 1 cup = 125g / 230G / 250g. Confused! :)
    thank you!!

    • February 13, 2013

      I had the same problem, in the end I just went out and bought a set of measuring cups as there were too many yummy foods I was missing out on with this confusion!

  • February 13, 2013

    Ive been following a similar baked donut recipe for a few years now and always just glaze it. But now, I want to cinnamon-sugar it! I love cinn-sugar and anything brushed with butter!

  • fusilliamy
    February 13, 2013

    OK OK, I give up. You’ve left me no choice… I will go out and buy a donut pan. These look so yummy! (and I love the b+w striped plate)

  • Krissy
    February 13, 2013

    You’ve done it. You have finally broken down my willpower. I’m going to buy a doughnut pan and than I’m going to eat five doughnuts. Do you have an Amazon affiliate program? If so, I’d like to make sure you get credit for my purchase!:) Thanks Shutterbean!!

  • Mel
    February 13, 2013

    You totally just made me buy a doughnut pan. And I see that I’m not the only one. That cracks me up!

  • February 13, 2013

    The taste/texture of a fried doughnut in baked doughnut form? I’M SO THERE.

  • Kali
    February 13, 2013

    I FINALLY bought a doughnut pan at Christmas so you better believe I will be making these. Thanks Tracy!

  • February 13, 2013

    I really wanna try this recipe – plus some of the other doughnut ones you’ve posted. Is there a way to make these without the special doughnut pan???

    • Tracy
      February 13, 2013

      muffin pan!

  • February 13, 2013

    I’ll echo that thought – What would be some interesting ways to make these without a special pan? Can you handle the dough easily enough to make shapes?

    • Tracy
      February 13, 2013

      Probably not. The dough is wet. Just make muffins! You can use a muffin tin, easily.

  • February 13, 2013

    so excited for this recipe, i’ve been waiting for it since you mentioned it on the podcast! i think these may be in order for my valentine’s breakfast tomorrow.

  • Sarah
    February 13, 2013

    I was just thinking that cinnamon sugar baked doughnuts would be wonderful! Thanks for the recipe.

  • February 13, 2013

    I’ve never had a baked donut, don’t have a donut pan. Have you ever tried them in a muffin tin?

  • Lauren
    February 13, 2013

    I just bought a doughnut pan yesterday, perfect timing!

  • February 13, 2013

    WOW! They look so spongy and soft and warmmmmm! Cinnamon-sugar is my favorite topping and baking them definitely works with how I live and cook. My blog readers would kiss me and give me a crown if I gave them something like this!

  • February 13, 2013

    Tell me I’ve lead a sheltered life (or maybe things are just a little different in the UK?!) but I’ve never heard of baking donuts! I so need to try this!

  • February 13, 2013

    YUM!! Donut YOLO

    • Tracy
      February 13, 2013

      indeed

  • February 13, 2013

    At a bakery, I recently ate a donut that didn’t taste like a donut. I figured it was a baked one and that it was just a little cake with a hole in it. My boyfriend also just bought me a donut maker (like a waffle maker; boy didn’t know about the pans…), and I now have this fear of baked donuts not tasting like donuts. And then I went to your blog and this was the first thing and the exact recipe I was looking for. Bam! It was meant to be.

  • MiChal
    February 13, 2013

    My first-ever batch of homemade doughnuts is in the oven. My house smells glorious. Putting batter into the pan wasn’t easy — they look messy and overfilled. That just means I’ll have to eat all the evidence before anyone comes home.

  • February 13, 2013

    Hey girl! We totally eat alike. I made these donuts as well from Barefoot’s new cookbook. I actually received the cookbook for Christmas and whipped these up the next day for the kids. They loved them almost as much as Donut Alley (which is saying a lot). I have yet to put up my post on them. I halved the recipe like you the first time, but then they went so fast that I kept the original amounts the next time I whipped them up and just cooked up 2 batches.
    Ok, question for you, didn’t you think the photo in the cookbook was edited quite a bit (hmmm.. a lot) or a different donut entirely? Your’s look like the real thing. I mean baked donuts just don’t have that dark brown crispy look, they look kind of bland till you doctor them up with the sugar!
    Great job on these and love the closing photo, it totally sets the mood!
    BTW, have you tried the kale salad from the True Food’s book yet?
    Jackie ;)

    • Tracy
      February 13, 2013

      We totally do. It’s hilarious. Must be a Leo deal. My friend used to work at Donut Alley when we were young. Love that place.

      The photo in the cookbook has more cinnamon on it. I also think they wanted them to look more baked. I can kind of see why- it makes them more contrasty!

      Haven’t tried the kale salad, I suspect it’s a lot like the Tuscan Kale Salad I’ve made before. I’m sure I’m gonna eat the heck out of it!

  • krissy
    February 13, 2013

    I can’t wait to try this tonight! My brother,so sweet, got me a Babycakes doughnut maker for my birthday and I have yet to test it out. Yummmm!

  • February 13, 2013

    Tracy, do you know how to store or how long these can last (assuming they are all not eaten immediately)?

    I’m due with Baby in Aprtil and Cinnamon doughnuts are one of my top cravings! Baby wouldn’t mind, but I don’t think I should eat all 6 at once ;)

    • Tracy
      February 13, 2013

      I think they should hold up for at least a few days at room temp. You want to keep them covered, of course! And you might want to freeze them if 6 is still too many for you.

  • February 13, 2013

    These, and all of your donuts, look amazing! I can’t believe they are baked not fried!

  • Katya
    February 13, 2013

    Tracy, all of your doughnuts are amazing. I love them all and will be trying this recipe sometime soon. I do have a question: if I find a recipe for 12, can I literally cut it in half for a smaller portion? Or different ingredients get cut differently? Thanks.

  • February 13, 2013

    I think this is the tipping point for me getting a doughnut pan. Also, doughnuts, coffee, and a crossword puzzle sounds like my idea of heaven! I heart you Tracy

    • Tracy
      February 13, 2013

      heart you back!

  • Kathy T
    February 13, 2013

    I was hoping these would not be as good as your chocolate donuts, but they are so good. I’ve eaten 3 today. Now, I have 2 great donut recipes. Thanks for sharing.

    • Tracy
      February 13, 2013

      Wow!! You made them already??! GO YOU!

  • Diana
    February 13, 2013

    So glad you made these! I’ve been looking for a less cake-y baked donut!

  • February 13, 2013

    These look glorious. I could easily polish off all 6. I love the first pic with the crossword puzzle!

  • Lauren
    February 13, 2013

    These taste like churros! So yummy and super good dipped in coffee.

  • February 13, 2013

    Oh my, oh my, oh my. That top pictures is what my dreams are made of! NYT crossword, coffee and homemade doughnuts. You’re way great. Can’t wait to try these! I absolutely bought a doughnut pan because of you. So fun.

  • February 13, 2013

    Folks, I can give you my honest opinion on these doughnuts ….. they ROCKED!!! I was lucky enough to be a taste tester, and all it did was leaving me wanting more!!

  • Amy
    February 13, 2013

    You are a genius! Definitely going to make these!

    http://yummei.blogspot.co.uk/

  • February 13, 2013

    This recipe is similar to the doughnut cupcakes I made last year! Same batter, only in cupcake form, and the top is dipped in butter then cinnamon sugar. Yes, they were great!

  • SharonM.
    February 13, 2013

    All I can say is YUMMMMMMM!

    My favorite donut in the universe is the cinnamon sugar…

    Can’t wait to try this recipe, you’ve inspired me!

  • February 13, 2013

    So, I guess I am dumb and always wondered why my hot out of the oil doughnut had trouble with sugar sticking to it. Hmmm… I needed some butter! Duh! But frying is so time consuming and dangerous, I need to stick to baking. Beautiful and simple recipe.

  • Heather
    February 14, 2013

    K. I need a donut pan…..NOW

  • February 14, 2013

    Oh my YUM. Goodness. These sound perfect, as cinnamon-sugar donuts are my favorite from the donut shop… and I am beginning to think I *need* a donut pan. It’s totally justifiable with all these decadent donut recipes I’ve been seeing around the internet recently, right?

  • Madeline
    February 14, 2013

    I made these this morning as a Valentine’s Day breakfast surprise for my husband, we both loved them! I’ve been looking for a really good dense cake doughnut recipe for a while now, so glad I tried this one out. I think the buttermilk really makes these guys.

    • Tracy
      February 14, 2013

      Fantastic! Happy Valentine’s Day!

  • February 14, 2013

    I love doughnuts but I always feel guilty when I indulge in this fried treat. This baked version is going to allow me to enjoy guilt-free!

  • February 14, 2013

    Omg….waaaaant!!

  • val
    February 14, 2013

    Did you buy stock in doughnut pans? You should have! You are killing it–both the pumpkin and espresso recipes have been great.

  • Tracie
    February 14, 2013

    Thank goodness I don’t have a doughnut pan. These look fantastic!

  • Jenny
    February 14, 2013

    I think you are single-handedly helping this doughnut pan move up in sales rank on Amazon. I love how your recipes are always for 6 donuts because that is as much as I can handle and I only have one pan so its perfect. I was curious about this affiliate program that someone mentioned. I found a link if that helps!

    https://affiliate-program.amazon.com/

    • Tracy
      February 14, 2013

      Thank you!! I am now currently using the affiliate link program :)

      • Jenny
        February 14, 2013

        Awesome! It’s helpful for me to know what kind of baking tools you’ve tried and like. It makes me more likely to buy them.

  • February 15, 2013

    Yes yes and yes. Times one trillion.

  • February 15, 2013

    The cinnamon-sugar coating is gorgeous, it looks so crispy and sweet and fantastic. I love your commitment to baked doughnuts, they are rockking my world!

  • February 16, 2013

    I need to order a doughnut baking tray right now. By the way I love your blog Tracy. I only found it a couple of weeks ago when I discovered your podcast with Joy (which I am slowly getting up to date with – think I have about 60 more to go until the current one). So the podcast and all your recipes are making me very happy right now – definitely inspiring me to be more adventurous with ingredients.

  • February 16, 2013

    I have the feeling once I try this I won’t be able to stop.

  • Tracy
    February 17, 2013

    Just made these this morning – they are AMAZING!!

  • February 17, 2013

    I prefer baked doughnuts vs fried. There is none of that hot grease to deal with. Can’t wait to make these!

  • February 19, 2013

    I’m SUPER hungry for these. I dough nut know how I can live without them!

  • February 21, 2013

    Got my doughnut pan today. Cannot wait to start working my way through all your doughnut recipes!! And, of course, eating them.

  • Anna
    February 22, 2013

    I tried these today…except I have a mini doughnut pan. I think that no one should ever buy the mini… They are hard to get the right amount so my doughnuts are more like mini muffins with a weird bottom. Since I had extra batter, I used individual bundt pans and that actually worked quite well in case you don’t have a regular doughnut pan!

  • February 22, 2013

    Having been lucky enough to sample one of these, I can definitely say they are as good as fried without the guilt! Need to buy donut pan stat!

  • February 25, 2013

    I couldn’t get these doughnuts out of my head last week but was out of patience by the time friday hit (and still haven’t purchased a doughnut pan!). anyway, i improvised and made donut holes with some leftover pizza dough (kind of a quick and dirty version of your genius): http://semiweeklyeats.blogspot.com/2013/02/donut-holes.html

  • Jess S
    February 26, 2013

    These are so wonderful! I made a double batch of them for my boyfriend and his family last weekend and they loved them! This will definitely be a recipe I use over and over again! Thanks Tracy!

  • March 7, 2013

    After looking at the many amazing doughnuts on your website, I did it. I went and bought myself a doughnut pan.

    May I just say… these doughnuts are amazing. But I only managed to devour one because my partner called dibs on the rest and they were gone within a couple of hours!

    • Tracy
      March 7, 2013

      Ahhh!

      1. YAY
      2. dibs?? don’t you get dibs for making them??
      3. keep up the good work!

      • March 7, 2013

        You’re starting your Friday list early for me! Which is cool cause it’s totally Friday here in Sydney.

        But Tracy, thank you – for all the amazing recipes. :)

  • Darci
    March 30, 2013

    This are fabulous but I needed up filling only half full as 3/4 full made for interesting muffin shape. These will be a lovely addition to my Easter brunch tomorrow…

    • Tracy
      March 30, 2013

      I wonder why!

  • David
    April 1, 2013

    I used this recipe this morning to make doughnuts for my wife, who is 7+ months pregnant and craving cinnamon and sugar goodness. We’ve had the doughnut pan sitting in the cupboard for months and hadn’t used it yet. This was the perfect opportunity. The doughnuts were great and completely satisfied the craving!

  • June 19, 2013

    Tracy, these are AMAZING! I don’t have a doughnut pan so I made little mini-muffin doughnuts, and my friends couldn’t stop raving about them! I wrote a little about my creations on my blog: http://ampersand-c.blogspot.com.au/2013/06/cinnamon-sugar-doughnut-mini-muffins.html

    Thank you so much for this recipe!! I am going to be a HIT at parties forever now!

  • MJ from NH
    August 30, 2013

    Ok, had to make a few adjustments as my husband has to watch his sugar intake but won’t give up his donuts. For the dough, I combined raw sugar with Splenda mixing it about 1/2 & 1/2 & for a full batch reduced it down to about 1 c total, & substituted olive oil for the melted butter. Since he likes plain donuts anyway, I eliminated the butter & cinnamon/sugar coating. Even with these adjustments he said they …”were the best donuts he ever tasted”… I have to admit, at first I was a little disappointed in them but they really grew on me. Now I can’t imagine going back to fried or store bought donuts. Since I only have 1 donut baking pan, I dug out my cast iron biscuit pan to make a full batch of 12. Need to watch the timing with that, as they came out a little dry but other than that – they were awesome.

  • Korena
    September 1, 2013

    Can I use milk or half and half instead of buttermilk?

    • Tracy
      September 1, 2013

      a good sub would be yogurt!

  • Sarah R.
    October 9, 2013

    Just made these. First of all, crazy awesome, thank you! My only modification was to sub yogurt thinned with a bit of milk for the buttermilk. They overflowed the donut pans and spread like whoah, and that was even after I filled up 5-6 mini muffins with extra batter. I’m wondering if the yogurt sub somehow gave it more volume or if the extra batter was due to a difference in donut pan capacity. They were still super yummy, just a little homemade looking! I also tried out the butter/ sugar dip & decided they didn’t need it because they’re sweet enough already.

  • Marie
    February 26, 2014

    Thank God I was making these to share with a couple other people! I don’t think I possess enough self-control to stop myself from eating more than two otherwise. These were unreal. SO good.

  • June 4, 2014

    Tracy, these doughnuts are amazing! In honor of national doughnut day, I made these a few days early. Next time I’ll have to double the recipe because there’s no way the batch I just made will last til Friday, lol. Serliously, delicious.

    • Tracy
      June 5, 2014

      OH!!! Fabulous! They’re addictive, huh?!

  • christina
    July 14, 2014

    I made these in mini muffin form and they were so good. People at my office were asking for the recipe! http://instagram.com/p/pVAuH1NImu/

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