If Apple Cider Donuts don’t say “Fall”, then I don’t know what does.
These donuts have a lot going for them: lightly tangy apple cider flavor, dense cake-y texture, and crunchy cinnamon sugar coating. There’s no wrong way to eat them, but trust me when I say that these donuts are at their best when eaten fresh and hot.
I’ve shied away from making fried donuts in the past because, frankly, I was a little intimidated. I stuck to baking my donuts in a donut pan. Not that there’s any shame in doing that. Baked donuts are great, too!
But I’m here to tell you that frying your own hot, crispy-on-the-outside, tender-on-the-inside donuts at home really isn’t a big deal! There’s a little bit of forethought involved, since you need to prep the dough, let it chill, and cut out the donuts. But once you’re past that, it’s pretty simple and everything comes together quickly.
First, you heat canola oil in a heavy bottomed pot (Dutch ovens work well here) until your candy thermometer lets you know you’ve reached the desired temperature. Gently add the donuts (avoid splashing the hot oil!), flipping them a couple of times over the course of 2-3 minutes so that they cook evenly on both sides. Let the cooked donuts drain a little before tossing them in a big dish of cinnamon and sugar. And there you have it!
Hot, delicious, homemade donuts.
This Apple Cider Donuts recipe is ever so slightly adapted from Table for Two.
- 2 cups apple cider
- 3.5 cups all-purpose flour
- 2/3 cup brown sugar, packed
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 3/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp ground cardamom
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp ground allspice
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- 2 eggs
- 6 tbs unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 1 quart canola oil, for frying
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1.5 tbs ground cinnamon
In a small saucepan, bring the apple cider to a boil. Cook over high heat until the cider reduces by half. Allow it to cool completely.
While the cider reduces, whisk the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, kosher salt, baking soda, and spices together in a large bowl.
In a medium-sized bowl or a large measuring cup, whisk the eggs, cooled butter, and cooled cider together.
Make a well in the dry ingredients then pour the liquid ingredients into the well.
With a spatula, fold the flour into the liquid ingredients. Once a sticky dough comes together, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours (overnight would be ideal).
On a plate or in a shallow container (I used a pie dish), thoroughly combine the sugar and cinnamon. Set aside.
Once ready, divide dough in half then on a well-floured surface, roll out the dough into 1/2-inch thickness and use a donut cutter to cut the dough (see notes).
Heat the canola oil in a heavy-bottom pot (I use a Dutch oven) to 375 degrees F.
Fry the donuts, 2-3 at a time, until they are golden brown (about 2-3 minutes on each side).
Place the fried donuts onto a paper towel to drain for a minute. Then immediately toss them in the cinnamon sugar mixture.
- I don't have a donut cutter, so I used two round cookie cutters of different sizes to cut the outline of the donut and then to cut the donut hole.