Sweet and Simple: How to Make Baked Doughnuts

Doughnuts warm from the oven, waiting to be glazed.
Doughnuts warm from the oven, waiting to be glazed.
Photos by Joanna O'Leary

Although I haven't lived abroad in a very long time, I still enjoy reading about improvising American foods in foreign countries where certain Western supplies are limited. One of my favorite sources of recipes is The Home Away, a fantastic blog for folks living overseas "at home but away from home."

Recently, I stumbled upon a recipe for baked doughnuts (full D-O-U-G-H spelling here reflects the texture of the confection!) contributed by my childhood friend Daphne, who is currently working in Cambodia with her husband and daughter.

The simplicity of the recipe plus the amazing photos was enough to persuade me to take a stab at the doughnuts, despite the fact that I consider the crispy fried exterior the best part of cake doughnuts (which are my favorite doughnuts). The recipe for one dozen baked doughnuts, slightly adapted, is after the jump:

Doughnut dough, pre-rise.
Doughnut dough, pre-rise.


  • 1 tablespoon fast-acting yeast
  • 1 tablespoon softened butter or oil
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 1/2 cups flour, well-sifted
  • 1 egg, beaten well
  • 1 sprinkle of nutmeg*
  • Pinch of salt

*Cinnamon, ginger and/or allspice might also be substituted.

Doughnut dough, post-rise.
Doughnut dough, post-rise.


  1. Dissolve yeast and 1 teaspoon of sugar in warm milk. Let set about 7 minutes or until the yeast is active and bubbling.
  2. Combine flour, salt, remaining sugar and nutmeg.
  3. Add in yeast mixture, butter/oil and beaten egg. Mix well with spoon, then knead.
  4. Knead the dough for about 10 minutes.
  5. Place dough in a greased bowl and cover with a towel. Let it rise until tripled in size.
  6. Roll out dough to a 1/2 inch thickness. Cut out circles and holes using doughnut cutter or two appropriately sized water glasses.
  7. Place doughnuts on greased baking pan. Let rise about 60 minutes or until doubled in size.
  8. Bake at 375 degrees F for 8 to 10 minutes.
  9. While doughnuts are still warm, brush lightly with butter/oil/vanilla glaze. Dust with ground topping of your choice.
Doughnuts with vanilla glaze, Oreo and graham cracker crumbs.
Doughnuts with vanilla glaze, Oreo and graham cracker crumbs.

Daphne's original recipe calls for a 45-minute first rise, but I waited two hours to ensure the yeast was fully activated.

I also took advantage of having a food processor on hand to grind some graham crackers and Oreos for toppings. Plain or decorated, the doughnuts are best consumed within 15 minutes of emerging from the oven.

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