When I was a little girl, my sister and I would go to church every Wednesday night with my grandparents, then spend the night at their house afterwards. On the way home from church, my grandparents would stop at the local donut shop and let my sister and me pick out a dozen donuts to bring home. Looking back, I realize this was probably some form of bribery to get us to 1) attend church service and 2) behave during the service. I don’t know if we actually behaved during church, but I do remember that my sister and I would always argue/fight/annoy each other when we got back to my grandparents house. I used to blame my sister for always picking on me, but maybe it had something to do with all that sugar we consumed from the donuts…
Each week I looked forward to scanning the racks of fresh donuts and picking out my favorite flavors; powdered sugar creme-filled, chocolate frosted and maple frosted. Not many people choose maple frosting on their donuts but it has always been one of my favorites. Now a few decades later, just the aroma of maple frosting can bring back childhood memories of our weekly trips to Jolly Pirate donuts.
Since this week marked the beginning of my 12 week clean eating and exercise program, you might be wondering why I am blogging about donuts.
Well last Friday I spent the entire day in my pajamas, snuggling with my sick little boy who had a fever and an ear infection. After several hours of playing with cars, watching all recorded episodes of Scooby Doo on our DVR and administering various medicines, I figured we both deserved something special to make us feel better. That is when I remembered the cutest little donut pan that I got for Christmas (thanks Mom!)
Since this was my first time making doughnut batter, I went straight to a few of my favorite food bloggers to search for recipes. I decided to break in my new doughnut pan with a recipe from Averie for Cinnamon Bun doughnuts with Vanilla Cream Cheese Glaze because I loved the idea of a doughnut tasting like a cinnamon bun.
I also loved that I could have fresh-baked doughnuts ready in less than 30 minutes. This version is also healthier than anything you will buy at your local donut store. Those two facts alone should be enough to send you rushing to Bed, Bath and Beyond RIGHT NOW to get your own donut pan.
As much as I wanted to share a picture of my first batch of doughnuts with you, they didn’t stick around long enough to make it in front of the camera. Who can resist warm donuts right out of oven? Sophia, Tallen and I had donuts for dinner that night, which I claim is totally acceptable on stay-at-home sick days.
The next morning I woke up, still riding high on a sugar rush and was inspired to try to create my own recipe for homemade donuts. I used to be intimidated to try to create new recipes in my kitchen, especially ones that involved baking. Baking involves such precise measurements and leaving out ONE ingredient can result in a total failure, like the time I baked chocolate chip cookies for Christmas a few years ago that were as hard as bricks. Apparently, including eggs in your recipes is BIG DEAL.
Or so I thought until I whipped up my own creation of maple cinnamon batter and poured it into my new doughnut pan, then realized the egg that was supposed to go into my batter was still sitting on the counter! Knowing there was a high probability that my doughnuts might not turn out, I put them in the oven anyway and mixed up a maple glaze.
Although I made a small mistake by slightly overfilling the donut pan, these turned out to be amazing! Apparently egg in the batter was not missed either. These donuts came out soft, dense and decadent with just a tough of cinnamon. The maple glaze was drizzled over the donuts while they were still warm, making these donuts taste waaayyyy more sinful than 160 calories and 2 grams of fat each! So of course I ate two of them and immediately started mixing up another batch. Mmmmm… Jolly Pirate has nothing on me. Too bad they closed their doors last year and I can’t challenge them to a donut bake-off!
Maple Cinnamon Donuts with Maple Glaze
Prep time: 10 min Bake time: 8-10 min
- 1 cup of white flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- 1/2 teaspoon maple flavoring
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup + 2 Tablespoons of buttermilk*
*I was out of buttermilk so made my own by mixing 1 Tablespoon of white vinegar in almost one cup of 1% milk. I let it sit for 5 minutes to sour, then stirred before using it in this recipe.
- 1/3 cup powdered sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon maple flavoring
- 1 to 2 Tablespoons milk (I used 1% low-fat milk)
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. While oven is heating, stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugars, cinnamon and salt in a medium size bowl.
- Add cold butter and cut it into the flour with a fork.
- Stir in maple flavoring and vanilla extract. Pour in 1/2 cup of buttermilk into your flour mixture and mix well. If batter is too dry, add additional buttermilk, 1 tablespoon at at time until batter is thin enough to pour.
- Spray donut pan with non-stick spray. Spoon batter into a pastry bag fitted with a large round tip (or plastic bag with the corner cut off) and pipe the batter into the pan. (I can usually spoon batter into the pan if I am careful to be very neat).
- Bake for 8-10 minutes or until the donuts spring back when touched.
- While donuts are baking, pour powdered sugar into a small bowl. Add maple flavoring, then whisk milk 1/2 tablespoon at a time until you reach desired consistency.
- Allow donuts to cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a serving plate and drizzle with your glaze.
*Warning – I cannot accept responsiblity for the inflated ego you might receive from making these donuts. Apparently after baking my first batch, I was under the delusion that this simple recipe had transformed me into a master donut maker who could challenge a business with over 30 years of donut making experience. Good thing my second recipe for chocolate donuts with chocolate glaze turned out too chewy and bland, which knocked me back to reality. Sure, they look pretty but the recipe needs a few tweaks and I will not share until it reaches perfection. Wipe your mouth, you’re drooling on the keyboard…