These lightly spiced and ultra moist Baked Apple Donuts are made with homemade apple butter and dipped in a sweet maple glaze for all the good Fall vibes. They are extremely easy to make and you don’t even need to bust out your frying pan!
If you’re not a big fan of hot oil splishing and splashing around in your kitchen, you will love how easy these Baked Apple Donuts are to make! Make sure you check out these Baked Matcha Donuts too.
How to make Baked Donuts from scratch
What do you need to make baked donuts?
The base of these baked donuts is really a cake batter. What makes them “donuts” is their shape, which you’ll need a donut pan to achieve.
Don’t have a donut pan? No problem!
- You can hack your own donut pan using this tutorial.
- Use a mini bundt cake pan.
- Just bake them into muffins instead using a standard size muffin pan.
- Or use mini muffin tins to make “donut holes”
The bake time may vary for any of these different pans, make sure to check the doneness of your donut using a toothpick.
Apple butter cake batter
These apple donuts get the flavor from my homemade apple butter. You can make them with store bought apple butter as well. The cake batter can be made easily in a mixing bowl with a hand whisk, no need for an electric mixer.
- Mix the wet ingredients: whisk together apple butter, egg, oil, vanilla extract and brown sugar until smooth.
- Mix the dry ingredients: sift together the flour, baking soda and baking powder. Stir in the kosher salt, since the grain is larger and will not pass through a fine mesh sieve. If you want to add extra spices, do it in this step.
- Combine dry and wet ingredients: whisk the flour mixture into the wet ingredients until just combined. You can also use a spatula to fold the ingredients in this step if the batter seems too thick for your whisk.
Baking the donuts
Prepare the donut pan by brushing the cavities with melted butter or spray it with nonstick spray. I like to use melted butter for extra flavor!
- Spoon 3 ½ tablespoons of batter into each cavity or put the batter into a pastry bag and pipe it into the pan. Don’t fill it all the way to the top, give them some room to rise.
- The donuts will bake in about 10 minutes. Allow them to cool in the pan 5 – 10 minutes before flipping them out onto a wire rack to cool completely
Maple glaze for the apple donuts
You can glaze the warm donuts if you want to serve them right away. Otherwise, wait until they cool completely before adding the glaze and allow the glaze to harden.
- Whisk together powdered sugar and pure maple syrup to make the glaze. You can adjust the amount of powdered sugar or maple syrup to make the glaze thicker or thinner to your liking.
- Dip the donut into the glaze and pick it up, let the excess drip back into the bowl. Place the glazed donuts on a wire rack set over a baking sheet to catch any glaze drips. Allow the glaze to harden.
Substitutions & Tips
➤ You can likely replace apple butter with applesauce in this recipe.
➤ These apple donuts get their flavor from the spices in the apple butter. Add extra apple pie spice if you want a stronger flavor or if you’re using applesauce instead. ½ tsp to 1 tsp of spice will be plenty.
➤ If you don’t want to add the maple glaze, you can roll the warm donuts in cinnamon sugar, or a mixture of sugar and apple pie spice. This way you can serve them right away, warm, instead of waiting until they are cool enough for the glaze.
➤ You could glaze the warm donuts and serve them right away, but the glaze will be drippy.
Store your leftover apple donuts in an airtight container at room temperature 2 – 3 days. If the weather is particularly warm, it is best to keep them refrigerated, they will last 5 days to a week. Serve them at room temperature.
Because these donuts are glazed, don’t stack them, give them some room to breath in your container.
More apple recipes
If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment, send me a photo, rate it and don’t forget to tag me @wildwildwhisk on Instagram. I’d love to see what’s cooking up in your kitchen. Cheers!
Baked Apple Donuts
- Donut Pan
- 1 cup all-purpose flour (130 g)
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¾ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ⅓ cup brown sugar (lightly packed, 60 g)
- 1 large egg
- ¾ cup apple butter (210 g)
- ¼ cup vegetable oil (50 g)
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Oil or melted butter for pan
- 3 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- ¾ cup powdered sugar (75 g)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Brush melted butter generously all over the cavities of the donut pan and set aside.
- In a medium mixing bowl, add the egg, apple butter, oil and vanilla extract, beat to combine. Add the brown sugar to the liquid mixture and whisk to combine.
- In a small mixing bowl, sift together flour, baking powder and baking soda. Stir in the kosher salt. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and fold until just combined.
- Spoon about 3 ½ tablespoon of batter into each cavity of the prepared donut pan; try to distribute the batter evenly in the ring shape cavity.
- Bake for 10 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the middle of donuts comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven and allow the donuts to cool for 5 - 10 minutes in the pan before flipping the pan over a wire rack to remove the donuts from the pan and let them cool completely.
- If you only have one donut pan, clean it out, butter it again and bake the rest of the batter.
- To make the glaze, whisk the maple syrup and powder sugar together in a small bowl until a thick glaze forms.
- When the donuts are cool enough, dip one side of the donuts into the glaze, let excess drip back into the bowl. Place the donuts back on the wire rack, set the wire rack on a baking pan to catch any drips. Allow them to rest until the glaze hardens.
- Add an extra ½ teaspoon of apple pie spice if you prefer a stronger spiced flavor. The spice in these donuts come from just the spices in the homemade apple butter.
- You can likely substitute applesauce if you don’t have apple butter. Add 1 teaspoon of apple pie spice in this case for more flavor.
- You could glaze the warm donuts and enjoy them right away if you prefer. Or simply roll the warm donuts in cinnamon sugar or a mixture of sugar and apple pie spice.
This post was originally published on 2/4/2015. The post has been updated and republished on 9/19/2020 with the latest improvements, and extra tips to help you in the kitchen.