Donuts are a common request I get when I teach kids cooking classes. Who doesn’t love donuts? The challenging thing for me is while teaching virtual cooking classes I don’t feel comfortable having kids handling hot oil without me being there and I feel bad asking all the families in the class to use all that oil to make one batch of donuts. In person classes are different, I can use one pot of oil and fry off all the donuts for the entire class and use the oil a couple more times to make other things after. But I don’t want to introduce the unnecessary hassle of heating up oil (and then having to properly dispose of it).
Hence, the baked donut class. Did you know there are two different types of donuts? Cake donuts (ones that are baked) and yeast donuts (ones that are deep fried). Examples of cake donuts include: Old fashioned plain, chocolate glazed. Examples of yeast donuts include the honey glazed, chocolate dipped, jelly donuts and apple fritters. The texture is very different between the two with cake donuts having a tighter crumb and denser structure while yeast donuts have a more stretchy interior with larger air bubbles.
This donut recipe is a good introduction to the world of cake donuts. The only piece of specialized equipment you need is a donut pan (which are readily available at most houseware stores and Amazon these days. If you don’t have a donut pan, you can also use a muffin pan (but will need to bake them for a little longer).
- baking spray or oil to grease the pan
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup white sugar
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted (or vegetable oil)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
Cinnamon Sugar Topping
- 4 Tbsp unsalted butter (1/2 stick), melted
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Spray or grease a doughnut pan or muffin tin really well (you can use muffin liners if you are using a muffin tin).
- Mix together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.
- In another bowl, whisk together the egg, milk, melted butter (or oil), sugar and vanilla.
- Stir the dry ingredients into the wet mixture until just combined.
- Spoon the batter into the prepared donut pan, filling each one a nearly to the top. Bake for 15 to 17 minutes, until the donuts spring back to the touch or a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then tap the doughnuts out onto a sheet pan. (If using a muffin tin, fill each well three-quarters full and bake for 20 to 25 minutes until they spring back to the touch or a toothpick comes out clean).
For the cinnamon sugar topping:
- Melt the butter in the microwave or a small pot.
- Combine the sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Dip each doughnut first in the melted butter and then in the cinnamon sugar on one side (or both sides if you prefer).