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Pumpkin Spice Mini-Donuts

My daughter has a severe peanut allergy, so grabbing donuts at the local bakery like most people doesn’t happen for us. The chance for cross-contamination of ingredients is too great. I’ve had this mini-donut pan in my cupboard for years. I bought it with the intention of making my own baked donuts for my daughter. I figured they would be healthier than those that are fried and obviously eliminate any chance of a stray peanut product sneaking into them. But after several attempts, I gave up searching for baked donut recipes that didn’t turn out as hard as rocks.

This recipe from Blue-Eyed Bakers caught my eye on Pinterest quite a while ago, and I’m so glad I broke out the mini-donut pan for it. Uh-mazing. The texture is lighter and fluffier than your typical cake donut. It’s more like a muffin, which I think is ideal for baked donuts. The pumpkin keeps the donuts tender and moist, while the fall-themed spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and cloves) are a perfect match for the season. But wait, we’re not done yet. The swooning begins once you coat them in butter and dust them with cinnamon-sugar. That really puts them over the top. Unfortunately my whole theory about baked donuts being healthier gets thrown out the window after the butter-dipping part, but life is too far too short to waste your calories on mediocre donuts.

I made these as an after-school treat for my kids last week. Judging by their reactions, you’d think they just won the lottery. I have to agree; I felt rich with love for these bad boys, too.

Pumpkin Spice Mini-Donuts
 
Author:
Serves: 36
Ingredients
Donuts
  • 1¾ cups flour
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon allspice
  • ⅛ teaspoons ground cloves
  • ⅓ cup vegetable oil
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup canned pumpkin
  • ½ cup milk
Cinnamon-Sugar Coating
  • ¼ cup melted butter
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1-2 teaspoons cinnamon
Instructions
Donuts
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease the mini-donut pan.
  2. Whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and cloves in a small bowl.
  3. Combine oil, brown sugar, egg, vanilla extract, pumpkin and milk in a large bowl. Slowly add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and stir until just combined. (Don't overwork the batter. No one likes tough donuts.)
  4. Pour batter into a large ziploc bag and snip a small corner off one end. (You're essentially making a pastry bag.) Squeeze batter into mini-donut pan forms, working in stages if necessary. Bake for 7-9 minutes. If the donuts gently spring back when you touch them, they are ready. Pop them out onto a wire rack to cool.
Coating
  1. Combine the cinnamon and sugar in a bowl.
  2. Working with a few donuts at a time, brush both sides of donuts with butter using a pastry brush (or dip them right into the butter.)
  3. Put donuts into bowl and coat with cinnamon-sugar.
Notes
If you don't plan to eat all the donuts right away, place the uncoated donuts in an airtight container until ready to use. Then proceed with the butter/sugar coating when you are ready to serve them.

26 Comments

  1. I made pumpkin pie oatmeal this morning – now you’ve got me wanting donuts! Anything pumpkin is so comforting this time of year.

    • Ooooh, pumpkin pie oatmeal! That sounds fabulous. Is the recipe on your blog? Will definitely check it out. So glad you stopped by!

  2. Can i used this PumpkinSpice Mini Donuts Recipes in my Mini Donut machine

    • Hi Bonnie, I’m not sure how to answer your question as I’ve never used a mini donut machine. I suggest trying it for the recommended baking time and see how they turn out. Keep me posted!

  3. where can I find a mini donut pan?

    • I’ve seen them at Target, but you can easily get them online (Amazon!)as well. Happy hunting!

  4. Do you add the milk and pumpkin with the rest of the wet ingredients?

    • Hi Kendall, I reread the recipe and realized it isn’t exactly clear when to add the pumpkin and milk. Yes, you do add those two items to the other wet ingredients. Thanks for clarifying, and enjoy the donuts!

  5. Hi Anna!

    Would you mind telling me the weight of the 1 3/4 cups of all-purpose flour in oz./gr.? I just want to make this donuts and I want it to be really perfect.

    Thanks for sharing.

  6. Thank you so much for this recipe! Just made them and they are delicious. To answer the previous commenter’s question, you can make them in a donut maker. It’s kind of like a waffle maker but for mini donuts if that makes sense. Also, we can’t have gluten and I found Cup4Cup to be an excellent substitute for the all purpose flour.

    • Thanks for the tips!

  7. could you use a non stick baking pan and and make more like sticks and bake untill done.I hate having to buy special pans ,or put into mini muffin pans?

    • I’ve never tried free-forming them into sticks, but a mini muffin pan would work great. Give that a try!

  8. I don’t have mini muffin pans so I would like to make them in regular sized pans. Any idea how that would effect the cooking time and the amount of donuts I would get. Thanks very much

    • Hi Sherrie, are you asking about regular size donut pans or muffin pans? I’ve never made them in large form, but I’m guessing it would make around 12 jumbo or 18 regular size donuts. And I’d add a few extra minutes on to the baking time. The donuts will be ready when they spring back lightly when touched. Enjoy!

      • Thanks so much for the info….I appreciate. The donut pans I have at home are regular size not jumbo.

  9. These donuts look yummy! I love pumpkin recipes. I wonder if you have the nutrition value for these donuts.

    Thank you!

  10. Hi Anna, thanks for sharing this recipe! This look amazing. Do you mind if I use/repost your donut photos?

    • Hi Bruce, glad you like the donuts! Would you mind sending a private message explaining a little more about what you are thinking? Thanks! garnishwithlemon @ gmail DOT com

  11. You gave me a great excuse to try out the mini-donut pan I bought in January. Great recipe! Moist with great pumpkin flavor. I used organic brown sugar, pumpkin and freshly grated nutmeg. And I dipped the tops of the donuts in the butter then tossed them in the sugar rather then brush the butter on. Because I thought I would use less butter – I have no idea if that was the case. :) Thanks so much for your recipe.

    • I love fall baking, and these donuts are some of our favorite treats. So glad you enjoyed them, Diane!

  12. Oh my! These are soooooo amazing! Although My brother is allergic to eggs and peanuts I use an egg substitute and they came out amazing! They were the first donuts he had ever had. Thank you for sharing this wonderful recipe. God Bless!

    • I’m thrilled, Renee! My peanut allergic daughter adores them, too, and it’s so fun to make food that they wouldn’t normally be able to enjoy. Thanks for sharing your experience with us!

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