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Apple Donuts

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close up overhead shot of Apple Donuts with cinnamon sugar frosting piled on a dish
These delicious baked apple donuts are full of apple goodness and make the perfect fall treats.
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Table of Contents
  1. Apple Donuts Ingredients
  2. How To Make This Apple Donuts Recipe
  3. More Recipes You’ll Love
  4. JUMP TO RECIPE

These easy, delicious baked apple donuts are the perfect simple treat to enjoy any time of year. Made with yummy cinnamon applesauce, sugar, and warm spices, this old-fashioned favorite is moist and tasty.

close up shot of Apple Donuts with cinnamon sugar frosting stacked on top of each other

Apple Donuts Ingredients

Apple Donuts raw ingredients that are labeled

You’ll need:

For the Donuts

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup cinnamon applesauce
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • ¾ cup buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla extract

For the Topping

Cinnamon Sugar Topping

  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon

OR

Icing Topping

  • 1½ cups powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons milk

SUBSTITUTIONS AND ADDITIONS

APPLESAUCE: You could also use regular applesauce instead of cinnamon, or use chunky applesauce in this great recipe.

SPICES: Add ½ teaspoon of nutmeg and/or ¼ teaspoon of ground cloves for added flavor. You could also add a teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice or apple pie spice for a little bit of fall flavor.

MILK: If you don’t have buttermilk, you can substitute whole or 2% milk for this recipe.

TOPPINGS: There are two toppings offered in this recipe for both classic cinnamon sugar and icing. You could also drizzle caramel sauce on top for a really decadent caramel apple finish.

FLOUR: You could swap out gluten-free or whole-wheat flour for these homemade donuts as well.

PUMPKIN: You can add ¼ cup of pumpkin and adjust the cinnamon applesauce to ¼ cup for a pumpkin-flavored treat for the fall season.

SUGAR & SPRINKLES: You could make these for any holiday by adding colored icing, sugar, or sprinkles.

How To Make This Apple Donuts Recipe

For the Donuts

OUR RECIPE DEVELOPER SAYS

We recommend a Wilton 12-Cavity Mini Donut Pan, but if you don’t have one or can’t find any mini donut pans, this recipe makes fun apple donut holes in a mini muffin pan. Fill the muffin cavities ¾ full and reduce the baking time by two or three minutes.

STEP ONE: Preheat the oven to 400°F and prepare a donut pan by spraying it with nonstick spray.

STEP TWO: In a medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt, and stir the flour mixture with a whisk to mix.

Apple Donuts process shot of ingredients in a measuring cup

STEP THREE: In a large bowl, combine the applesauce, vegetable oil, buttermilk, and vanilla in a separate bowl and stir to mix.

Apple Donuts process shot of ingredients in a measuring cup

STEP FOUR: Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir until just mixed.

PRO TIP:

Be careful to not overmix!

Apple Donuts process shot of ingredients combined in a bowl

STEP FIVE: Place the batter in a gallon plastic bag inside a tall jar, folding back the edges. Twist the top of the bag and clip it closed. Hold the bag upside down and use scissors to cut off an angle at the corner of the bag.

Apple Donuts process shot of batter poured into a ziplock bag and the tip cut off of bag to make a piping bag

STEP SIX: Pipe/fill each donut cavity ¾ full of batter.

PRO TIP:

Clean up any spills in the middle before baking so that the centers turn out and don’t bake over.

Apple Donuts process shot of batter being poured into a donut pan

STEP SEVEN: Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.

PRO TIP:

Oven temperatures vary and may need to be recalibrated periodically to ensure they are accurate. Make sure to check your donuts at the lower end of the recommended baking time.

Apple Donuts process shot of donuts on a cooling rack

STEP EIGHT: Remove from the oven and let the mini donuts cool for five minutes before removing them from the pan to a wire rack.

For the Topping

Cinnamon Sugar Topping

STEP ONE: Using two separate bowls (big enough for a donut to fit), place the melted butter in one and then mix the sugar and cinnamon together in the second bowl.

STEP TWO: Dip the cooled donuts top side down first in the butter, let drip, then dip into the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Let the donuts sit for a few minutes and then dip again in the sugar coating to give even more texture.

Apple Donuts process shot of donuts dipped in cinnamon sugar frosting with a bowl of butter and the cinnamon sugar mixture

Icing Topping

STEP ONE: Mix together the icing ingredients until a smooth consistency. Add more milk if needed but only a little at a time. You can add food coloring or add colored sprinkles after dipping or drizzling the icing on the donuts.

How To Serve

Everyone loves these delicious apple donuts with a glass of apple cider or milk. Adults might enjoy dipping the warm donuts in a mug of hot coffee, with tea, or a homemade pumpkin spice latte for a cozy treat.

Try our classic applesauce cake for another irresistible sweet. Our donut recipes are always a hit, check out our pumpkin donuts as well.

Storage

ON THE COUNTER: You can keep these cake donuts on the counter at room temperature in a sealed container for up to three days. You can serve leftover apple donuts at room temperature or microwave for a few seconds before serving for a warm treat.

IN THE FREEZER: Freezing these mini apple donuts is not recommended.

close up overhead shot of Apple Donuts with cinnamon sugar frosting piled on a dish

Full of lovely apple flavor and the perfect, moist texture, these fresh apple donuts are sure to be a family favorite. Simple ingredients come together from scratch quickly and you only need about ten minutes of baking time before you’re ready for this simple, classic homemade treat.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What can I use if I don’t have a donut pan?

You can make this apple donut recipe in mini muffin pans or regular muffin pans if you don’t have a donut pan available.

Can I make these into apple donut holes?

You can turn this easy recipe into apple spice donut holes using a mini muffin pan, baking for about 10 to 12 minutes.

How to store apple donuts?

Baked donuts are the best the first day they are made, but you can store these in a single layer in an airtight container for a couple of days.

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close up overhead shot of Apple Donuts with cinnamon sugar frosting piled on a dish

Apple Donuts

5 from 2 votes
These delicious baked apple donuts are full of apple goodness and make the perfect fall treats.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 12

Ingredients
  

Donuts

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoons cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup cinnamon applesauce
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • ¾ cup buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla

Cinnamon Sugar Topping

  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon

Icing Topping

  • cups powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons milk

Instructions
 

Donuts

  • Preheat oven to 400°F and prepare the donut pan by spraying with nonstick spray.
  • In a medium-sized bowl, combine dry ingredients and stir with a whisk to mix.
  • In a large bowl, combine wet ingredients in a separate bowl and stir to mix.
  • Add dry ingredients to wet and stir until just mixed.
  • Place a Ziploc bag inside a tall jar, folding back the edges. Spoon the donut batter into the bag until full. Twist the top of the bag and clip it closed. Hold the bag upside down and use scissors to cut off an angle at the corner of the bag.
  • Pipe/fill each donut cavity ¾ full of batter.
  • Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.
  • Remove from the oven and let cool 5 minutes before removing from the pan.

Cinnamon Sugar Topping

  • Using two separate bowls (big enough for a donut to fit), place the melted butter in one and then mix the sugar and cinnamon together in the second bowl.
  • Dip the cooled donuts top side down first in the butter, let drip, then dip into sugar/cinnamon mix. Let the donuts sit a few minutes and then dip again in the cinnamon/sugar mixture to give even more texture.

Icing Topping

  • Mix together icing ingredients until a smooth consistency. Add more milk if needed, but only a little at a time. You can add food coloring or add colored sprinkles after dipping or drizzling the icing on the donuts.

Notes

  • We recommend a Wilton 12-Cavity Mini Donut Pan, but if you don’t have one or can’t find any mini donut pans, this recipe makes fun apple donut holes in a mini muffin pan. Fill the muffin cavities ¾ full and reduce the baking time by two or three minutes.
  • Be careful to not overmix the batter or it will be tough! 
  • Clean up any spills in the middle of the donuts in the pan before baking so that the centers turn out and don’t bake over. 
  • Oven temperatures vary and may need to be recalibrated periodically to ensure they are accurate. Make sure to check your donuts at the lower end of the recommended baking time.

Nutrition

Calories: 295kcal | Carbohydrates: 50g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 12mg | Sodium: 241mg | Potassium: 128mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 34g | Vitamin A: 151IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 58mg | Iron: 1mg
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  1. Cindia says

    5 stars
    Delicious and so quick! I added extra cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves for added flavor. Dusted with plain sugar. Very tender. Will make this recipe often.