I go through stages in cooking and baking where I become obsessed with a particular thing. In 2017 and 2018, it was smoothie bowls. Last year and the beginning of this year, it was laminate, aka buttery French pastries.
Now, I’m heading into my baked doughnut stage, and I couldn’t be happier. It all started at the beginning of the pandemic when I was stuck inside for days on end, and I wanted a simple baking project that would deliver delicious results.
I also wanted something that wasn’t laden with fat and grease. I love a fried doughnut as much (or more) than the next person, but I don’t like making big batches of them at home. They really only taste good on day one, and I feel gross if I eat a bucket full of them by myself.
That’s not the case with baked doughnuts. They are fluffy and light, and they pack a lot of flavor without drowning in oil and grease. Yes; they have a different texture than standard doughnuts, but that’s not a bad thing. They’re like a lighter cake doughnut that you can eat three at a time.
Which brings me to these apple cider doughnuts with maple glaze. I went to an apple orchard last week with my boyfriend and picked up a big jug of local cider. The first thing on my list to make with it were doughnuts.
The batter incorporates a healthy pour of apple cider, fall spices, and buttermilk, which gives it a tangy flavor that balances the sweet and tart flavors.
The maple glaze on top though is what really steals the show. Make sure you use good maple syrup because that makes a big difference in flavor.
I sprinkled some nonpareils on top of each doughnut. If you go this route, make sure you put the sprinkles on as fast as you can after you apply the glaze. The glaze sets quickly and you want to make sure the sprinkles adhere to the doughnut before it does.
Here’s a song to get you started on your apple cider doughnut journey.
Baked Apple Cider Doughnut with Maple Glaze
for the doughnuts:
2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup apple cider
1/4 cup buttermilk
for the maple glaze:
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
1/3 cup pure maple syrup
1 cup sifted confectioners’ sugar
pinch of kosher salt
Grease two doughnut pans and set aside. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in a large bowl. In another bowl, beat the eggs with the softened butter until smooth, then beat in the apple cider and buttermilk. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix until combined (do not overmix). Spoon or pipe the batter into the prepared baking pans.
Bake the doughnuts for 8-10 minutes or until the tops spring back to the touch. Remove them from the oven and allow them to cool in the pan for a few minutes before removing them and placing them on a wire rack to cool completely.
Once the doughnuts are completely cool, making the glaze. Melt the butter and maple syrup together in a small saucepan. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the confectioners’ sugar and salt. Dip the top of a doughnut in the glaze, place on a wire rack, and put sprinkles on top. Repeat with the remaining doughnuts. Enjoy!