We live less than 20 minutes from some of the best apple cider doughnuts, ever (Davenport’s farm stand in Stone Ridge, in case you’re curious), so it almost seems silly to have contemplated making them at home. The thing with most apple cider doughnuts is that they’re fried. I love a good doughnut, so don’t get me wrong here.
While thinking about recipes on my bucket, my mind drifted to apple cider doughnuts. I’ve always wanted to make them but the first step, reducing the cider by about two thirds, was always a sticking point. When it comes to baking for the sheer joy, and not work, I like to be spontaneous. I want my apple cider doughnuts in 10 minutes, not 40. Add in the frying part, and well the odds were not in apple cider doughnuts’ favor.
There’s a little work around to this—reduce the cider in advance. Make the most of the time while you’re doing dishes, folding laundry, prepping dinner, basically anything that keeps you around the house so you can keep a watchful on eye on the cider while it’s cooking down on the stove.
It’s going to feel like forever, or at least it did to me, but pay close attention as it gets towards the end of the reducing process. The apple cider will quickly go from concentrated to a crusted burnt on mess in your pot in those last few minutes (gee, wonder how I know that?!). Once it’s reduced, you can store it in the fridge for up to a week (maybe more, but I haven’t tested keeping it longer than that).
I decided to add my spices to the cider while it was reducing to save a few seconds on the next step, which is making the batter. I’ve also chosen to fool myself into thinking these are a better treat for the kids since they’re baked and use whole wheat pastry flour. I mean, that pretty much makes them a health food, right?
Why make apple cider doughnuts when we can easily buy them at the local farm stand? Simple, because they’re much easier than I realized.
I had very stiff competition, and was a bit nervous to let the kids taste test. Isabella loves apple cider doughnuts. She also isn’t shy about telling me when she doesn’t like something. Virginia isn’t a fan of them at all, so I wasn’t expecting much from her.
The girls kept coming into the kitchen while the apple cider was reducing, asking “Mommy, what are you making that smells so good?,” so that gave me some hope. When the first batch was done, I put them on the table and let them have at ’em. Squeals of joy were heard after the first bite, from both kids, and my genius, best mommy ever status was intact. They didn’t even care that they were baked, and not fried. They tasted amazing, and that was all that mattered. I’ve since made this recipe a half dozen times, and their love for them is still going strong.
Favorite Recipes from Years Past
Seven Years Ago: Apple Cranberry Crumb Cake
Six Years Ago: Spice Scented Cranberry Sauce
Five Years Ago: Chocolate Chess Pie
Four Years Ago: Coconut Custard Pie
Three Years Ago:Homemade Pumpkin Syrup
Two Years Ago: Pumpkin Slab Pie
One Year Ago: No-Roll Pie Crust
Apple Cider Doughnuts
- For the Batter
- 1 cup apple cider (not apple juice)
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
- Scant cup (130 grams) whole wheat pastry flour
- ¼cup (50 grams) granulated natural cane sugar
- 1 teaspoon (5 grams) baking powder
- ⅛ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon (2 grams) sea salt
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons (28 grams) butter, melted
- To Finish
- Granulated natural cane sugar
- Ground cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons (28 grams) butter, melted
- Preheat the oven to 425ºF (220ºF). Spray a 6-count doughnut pan with cooking spray, or grease with butter (cooking spray really works best).
- Add the cider, cinnamon, and cloves to a small pot. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce flame to medium. Cook until the cider has reduced to 3 ounces (little more than ⅓ cup), about 20 minutes. Let cool a few minutes while you prepare the batter.
- In a medium bowl, add the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Whisk to blend.
- Add the egg, reduced cider, and melted butter. Using a wooden spoon, stir until it forms a thick batter, and there are no visible signs of flour. Spoon the doughnut batter into a pastry bag. Pipe into the prepared doughnut pan.
- Bake for 8 minutes.
- Remove from the oven, and let the doughnuts sit in the pan for 2 minutes. Turn the doughnuts out onto a wire rack to finish cooling for a few minutes.
- In a small bowl, one wide enough to fit the doughnuts for dipping, add some sugar and cinnamon. Brush melted butter on top of one doughnut, then dip it into the cinnamon sugar mixture. Place on a wire rack to set. Repeat with the remaining doughnuts.