Your Shopping List

View Shopping List

Apple Cider Baked Donuts

Apple Cider Baked Donuts
Serves: Makes 18 donuts or 36 donut holes using mini-muffins
Ready In: 40 minutes

Why We Like It

It can be done!  We were presented with the challenge of "healthifying" donuts, and the result?  Delicious!  Try this great-tasting recipe to make apple cider donuts at home -- they are healthier and the perfect reason to get the whole family involved to celebrate fall!  Check out this coaching tip for more!

Reduce the Apple Cider (OPTIONAL - see quick tip):

  • 2/3 cup apple cider (or use 1/3 cup apple juice, see quick tip)

Place apple cider in a small saucepan and bring to a boiling simmer over medium heat.  Let simmer until it reduces to 1/3 cup.

NOTE: it takes 10-15 minutes for the cider to reduce to 1/3 cup.  This was almost exactly the time it took to get to the step where the reduced cider is added.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees

Grease donut pans or muffin pans (three 6 hole donut pans, or two 24 count mini-muffin pans).

Combine the Dry Mixture:

  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour (or white whole wheat flour)
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg

Add to a medium size bowl and whisk for 30 seconds to distribute evenly.

Combine the Cider Mixture:

  • 1/4 cup buttermilk (or milk of your choice such as almond, skim, or soy milk)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp lemon zest (grated lemon peel of one lemon)

Add to a measuring cup.  When the cider is reduced, add it to this mixture, or add 1/3 cup of apple juice now.  Stir to combine and set aside.

Mix Next:

  • 1/4 cup applesauce (natural, unsweetened)
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs (at room temperature)

Add the applesauce and brown sugar to a large bowl and use a hand mixer to combine until smooth, about 3 minutes.  Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well in between.

Finish the Batter:

With the mixer on low, add one-third of the flour mixture and half of the cider mixture.  Add another one-third of the flour mixture and the rest of the cider mixture, continuing to mix.  Then, add the rest of the flour mixture and mix until the batter is just combined.  Scrape down the sides as needed.

Prepare and Bake:

Carefully pour the batter into the molds or muffin pans.

Bake until the donuts spring back when touched, about 10-13 minutes for donuts and 8-10 minutes for mini muffins.

Transfer the donuts to a cooking rack or place on parchment paper.


Add the Topping:

  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup butter (unsalted butter, melted)
  • 1/2 cup sugar (granulated white sugar - see quick tip)
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Add the melted butter to one bowl.  In a separate bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon.

Brush the warm donuts with melted butter, and then dip the donuts into the cinnamon sugar mixture.  (We have found that dipping the donuts in the cinnamon sugar twice adds a thicker topping.)

Serve and Enjoy!

Quick Tips

Using apple cider adds more flavor, but apple juice will work as well if you want to skip the “simmering/reducing the cider” step.


Nutrition Information for 1 donut or 2 donut holes

  • Calories: 105
  • Fat: 3.5 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.9 g
  • Cholesterol: 30 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate: 18 g
  • Fiber: 1 g
  • Total Sugars: 10 g
  • Protein: 2 g
  • Sodium: 60 mg