What Do I Need To Make Baked Apple Cider Donuts
First things first, to make baked donuts youre going to need a donut pan. Luckily, theyre really inexpensive! You can get a set of 2 non-stick, six cavity Wilton donut pans on Amazon for less than $15. Heres the set I have.
It can also be handy to have a large round piping tip for adding the donut batter into the pan, but its not 100% necessary. You can always spoon the batter into the pan, just make sure the batter is even.
Once you have your materials, get your ingredients out and youre ready to get started. And, to be honest, making baked apple cider donuts is really similar to making muffins. Mix the dry ingredients in one bowl and the wet ingredients in another and then mix them together.
Vermont Apple Cider Doughnuts
Its a cider makers tradition to use some of the freshly pressed juice to make lightly tangy, apple-scented doughnuts like these. The cider adds more than flavor, though its acidity makes the doughnuts tenderer. I have two favorite spots for buying these treats: Atkins Farms in Amherst, Massachusetts and Cold Hollow Cider Mill in Waterbury Center, Vermont. When I cant be there, I make homemade apple cider donuts.
See how to make this recipe for Homemade Apple Cider Donuts with instructions and photos. Or check out our picks for the 5 Best Cider Mills in New England.
Total Time: 1.5Yield: about 18 3-inch doughnuts
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for work surface
- 1-1/4 teaspoons table salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk
- 1/3 cup boiled apple cider
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- Canola or safflower oil
- Cinnamon sugar or confectioners’ sugar
On To The Details Start With The Doughnuts
If you love a classic apple cider doughnut, these are for you. If you can make a basic cupcake or muffin, you can certainly make these. Theres nothing fancy about them.
The key to these doughnuts? Its all in the cider. I recommend finding the best spiced cider with no added sugars. If you can, pick up some fresh apple cider from your local farmers market. Or even better, go apple picking and pick some up! Nothing quite beats a really good apple cider. Its always so flavorful this time of year.
To help intensify the apple cider flavor throughout the doughnuts, I decided to boil down the cider on the stove until reduced. Boiling the cider will concentrate the flavors and make the cider that much more flavorful. Its an extra step, but one that I think is worth it.
Once youve boiled the cider, the rest is quick. Just mix the cider with apple butter, eggs, melted butter, vanilla, plus dark brown sugar. Then add in all the dry ingredients and stir in a chopped Honeycrisp apple. Adding the apple makes them kind of like apple fritter doughnuts.
Divide the batter between doughnut pans . As the doughnuts bake, the kitchen will start to smell like your favorite autumn candle, its perfection.
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This Trick Changes Everything
The trick to apple cider donuts is to flavor them with concentrated apple cider. Apple cider that has been reduced down on the stove is thick and potent, adding big flavor without excess liquid. Apple cider, either store-bought or this homemade apple cider, is certainly delicious to drink but it wont add enough flavor to baked goods. Taking 20 minutes to reduce the cider down transforms regular donuts into amazing apple cider donuts. If you like to keep things simple in the morning, reduce the cider the night before. That will save you cooling time, too, because the cider must cool for a few minutes before you add it to the batter.
To reduce your apple cider, simply follow these simple steps:
- Pour 1½ cups apple cider into a small saucepan. We will reduce this to ½ cup.
- Place on low heat and set a timer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Begin checking at 10 minutes, and then every 3-5 minutes after that until you have ½ cup of cider reduction .
- Remove from heat and allow to cool for at least 10 minutes before using in the batter.
Its that easy! If you have leftover apple cider, use it in my honeycrisp apple sangria or apple cider sangria or drink it plain.
Heres my reduced down apple cider:
Apple Cider Donuts With Apple Pie Spice
A few years ago, Will and I went on a trip around New England. This was basically my spooky, Gilmore Girls dream come true. On the top of my list for this trip was trying an apple cider donut! Im basic like that, ok? And yeah, I did have a PSL every time I saw one on the menu.
During our trip, we stayed in an airbnb above a general store in Vermont. It honestly was so picture perfect, it looked fake. The stoop was covered in pumpkins, there was a wood covered bridge opposite, I basically spent the whole trip just going LOOK AT IT THIS! UGH! JUST LOOK AT IT. On the last day in our airbnb, I asked Will to run back into the general store before we drove off to grab an apple cider donut for me. I had seen a sign for them earlier and thought it would such a nice way to end the trip. When he brought it back it was.. ok? Kind of dry? I was pretty disappointed and said one day I would make own, so here we are!
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Baked Apple Cider Donut Holes
An easy recipe for Baked Apple Cider Donut Holes coated in either cinnamon and sugar or an apple cider glaze. Plus instructions for how to make Baked Apple Cider Donuts too!
Its officially October and theres a small hint of fall weather in the air. The stores are lined with tons of fresh apples and apple cider is everywhere now. This is by far my favorite time of year because I love creating fall desserts, especially anything with apples or apple cider in it.
These Baked Apple Cider Donut Holes were actually requested by a reader earlier this year. I loved the idea so I jotted it down in my little book of notes and held onto the idea until fall was finally here. Im so glad I held onto this recipe idea too because this may be one of my favorite baked donut hole/donut recipes to date.
These donut holes are jam-packed with apple cider flavor thanks to a little trick I use to really enhance the flavor. And because I couldnt just leave you with a donut hole recipe, Ive also included instructions for how to make baked apple cider donuts and an apple cider glaze. If you love apple cider, then this is definitely one recipe that you will want to try before fall is over!
Bring The Apple Cider Doughnuts To You
You may not be able to take a day trip to the apple orchard, but you can still bring those beloved treats home.
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Light and fluffy, bursting with tart cider flavor, and boasting an undeniable cinnamon-sugar aroma: Cider doughnuts are a fall staple at apple orchards and farm stands everywhere. But these sweet beauties are not just the stuff of day-trip dreams. Theyre achievable at home with this flexible baked, not fried recipe thats perfect as breakfast the day after Thanksgiving, or as a special treat to mark the changing of the seasons even if both are significantly different this year.
The batter is spiced with a hefty amount of cinnamon to amplify the cider theres more cinnamon in the sugary topping, applied after baking and nutmeg. But other warm fall spices could be added: Ginger, clove and cardamom would all be welcome.
As would boiled cider in place of the apple cider. While any kind of cider makes for a tasty doughnut, boiled cider cider reduced by about a third until its a maple syruplike consistency gives this recipe a concentrated apple flavor. You can buy it, or make it yourself by reducing 1 ½ cups of apple cider down to ½ cup.
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Baked Apple Cider Doughnuts
Apple cider doughnuts are one of my favorite autumn treats. A tasty baked version reduces the guilt- a little bit. This recipe was adapted from The New York Times, contributed by Erin Jeanne McDowell.
I made mini-doughnuts and madeleines. I must say that we were surprised by how much we enjoyed the apple cider madeleines which were absolutely amazing with crispy edges. The batter could also be baked in a muffin pan.
Yield: 12 mini-doughnuts and 8 madeleines
For the Batter:
- 1 3/4 cup/225 grams all-purpose flour
- 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
- 3/4 tsp fine sea salt
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
- 10 T unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 3/4 cup/165 grams light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup/50 grams granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup/120 milliliters apple cider
For the Topping:
- 1/2 cup/100 grams granulated sugar
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
To Make the Doughnuts & Madeleines:
Baked Apple Cider Donuts
Hello and welcome! For a sweet treat today, I have Baked Apple Cider Donuts. Falls favorite hand-held confection, Baked Apple Cider Donuts are cakey and soft. They are best enjoyed warm, preferably with a hot cup of coffee on a cool, crisp morning. I did buy a donut pan specifically for this recipe, but you can make these in muffin tins. Even though the muffin tin version is missing the characteristic donut hole, they come out like muffin tops. Lets get right to it!
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How To Store Paleo Apple Cider Donuts
This recipe makes nine medium-sized donuts, or 12 mini donuts.
If you and your family are able to resist eating them all in one go, you can store these donuts in a air-tight container on the countertop for 1-2 days. Alternatively, you could store them in the fridge for 4-5 days, however, it may change the texture of the donut. In any case, I have a feeling these donuts will be gone before then!
Recipe: Baked Apple Cider Doughnuts
Yield: 12 doughnuts or muffins
- 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 cup unsalted butter , at room temperature
- 3/4 cup light brown sugar
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup apple cider
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease 2 doughnut pans with nonstick spray. In a medium bowl, add flour, baking powder, salt, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and nutmeg and whisk to combine. Set aside.
2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream 10 tablespoons butter, brown sugar and 1/4 cup granulated sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time and mix until well incorporated after each addition, scraping the bowl as necessary. Beat in the vanilla extract.
3. Add the flour mixture and mix on low speed until incorporated. With the mixer running, add the apple cider in a slow, steady stream and mix to combine. Scrape the bowl well to make sure the batter is homogeneous.
4. Spoon the batter into prepared doughnut pans, filling them about 2/3 of the way. Bake until evenly golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center of the thickest portion comes out clean, 12 to 15 minutes. Rotate the pans halfway through baking.
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How To Make The Most Delicious Paleo Apple Cider Donuts
These Paleo Apple Cider Donuts get their flavor from concentrated apple cider, apple sauce, and cinnamon.
Concentrated apple cider is apple cider that has been simmered on the stove until it reduces in volume. Simmering down the cider really brings out the rich apple flavor. Whenever I make concentrated apple cider the whole house smells amazing, plus its a sign of the delicious donuts to come!
I also use unsweetened apple sauce for these Paleo Apple Cider Donuts. It adds subtle sweetness and more natural apple flavor.
And, of course, theres the cinnamon. The warm sense of cinnamon enhances everything about these AIP donuts, and it will get you in the mood for all the seasonal fall flavors these Paleo Apple Cider Donuts have to offer.
Cinnamon is filled with antioxidants that protect the body from oxidative stress and free radicals. Cinnamon also has anti-inflammatory properties and can help your body defend itself from inflammatory diseases.
How To Make Baked Apple Cider Donuts:
The first step to making these baked apple cider donuts is to reduce some apple cider in a saucepan. You might be annoyed with me for requiring the extra step of boiling the cider before it goes into the donut batter. I was annoyed myself, honestly, but enough recipes I looked at while researching indicated it was necessary so I gave in. Trust me when I say its worth it. The flavor concentrates and itll make your home smell like fall heaven.
Once your cider is reduced, youll add butter to it until melted the result with be syrupy in texture. Then youll whisk together 1/2 cup of the cider/butter mixture with an egg, sugar, sour cream, and vanilla until combined. In a separate bowl, youll whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt then add to the wet ingredients and mix until incorporated.
Now I have to admit, its a little tricky transferring the donut batter into the donut pan without making a huge mess. Thats why I suggest spooning it into a large ziplock or pastry bag and piping it into the donut cavities. I know it sounds a little odd, but its the easiest way to get the donut batter neatly into the donut pan. Plus, hello easy cleanup.
Once these beautiful little donuts are baked , they get a little bath in the reduced cider/melted butter mixture for some extra flavor, then dunked in apple pie spiced cinnamon sugar. DELICIOUS.
I hope you enjoy these as much as I have!
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Why You Will Love These Apple Cider Doughnuts:
- Easy to make cake doughnuts that are fluffy and coated in cinnamon sugar.
- Made with simple ingredients, readily available in your local grocery store and some you might already have in your pantry.
- They are baked not fried. No need for any yeast.
- They are light and fluffy and taste just like old fashioned apple cider donuts.
- They are infused with delicious apple cider.
Apple Cider Doughnut Ingredients
- Spices: Apple Pie Spice is a pretty standard item sold here here in Canada. If you dont have access to store-bought apple pie spice, you can make your own – with a blend of cinnamon, cardamom, and nutmeg. Or use a mix of cinnamon and nutmeg for the perfect amount of fall flavor. Adjust amounts to taste.
- Apple Cider: Fresh apple cider is best. Do NOT use apple cider vinegar as it is NOT the same thing as apple cider. If you have a little extra time you can reduce the apple cider for more depth of flavour – details about that in recipe notes.
- Flour: All-purpose flour – I usually use my go to Bobs Red Mill Organic Unbleached White All Purpose Flour – its always stocked in my pantry. They have all my baking needs covered always. If you wanted a gluten free option my favourite one is Bobs Red Mill Gluten Free 1-1 all purpose flour. Its also a staple in my pantry. Its the perfect simple reliable gluten free alternative.
- Cinnamon Sugar Topping: The topping helps create that authentic apple cider donut consistency and flavor. You can skip it to cut back on sugar, but the donuts will not taste the same.
- The rest of the ingredients are basic baking ingredients most of them are probably already in your pantry.
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The 9 Best Places In New York To Get Your Apple Cider Fix This Fall
We know this statement might ruffle some feathers with Starbucks fans who love pumpkin spice everything. But we dont think any beverage represents fall in New York more than apple cider. You can find it bottled on store shelves, or maybe you even like to mull some yourself in a slow cooker or on the stove. But theres something special about going straight to the mill and getting it right from the producer. Check out these great apple cider mills in New York that are perfect for warming up on a chilly fall afternoon.