We have the most wonderful farm and orchard not far from us here called Terhune Orchards. They’re open all year but fall is my favorite time to go for their apple picking, pumpkin picking and hay rides. They also have the most incredible pies and apple cider donuts. So I wanted to recreate their apple cider donuts right here at home for a fun weekend treat. They took a little time but oh boy were they worth it!
The most fun part was taking the hot apple cider donuts and shaking them in a paper bag filled with cinnamon and sugar. It was the perfect coating! Then I just served them immediately warm. Oh my goodness, I was in heaven. They were so warmly spiced and flavorful. The crunchy coating was amazing on the soft, fluffy donuts too. They were the ultimate fall treat! Oh, and I dipped them in my pumpkin spiced coffee too. Doesn’t get much better I tell ya. xoxo
Apple cider donuts are the ultimate fall treat! This version is simple to make and so incredible fresh out of the fryer with a cinnamon sugar coating.
- 1 cup apple cider
- 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour plus additional as needed
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon divided in half
- 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 pinch salt
- 1 cup dark brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons butter at room temperature
- 2 tablespoons apple sauce
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 2 whole eggs
- canola oil as needed for frying
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- First, pour the apple cider into a small pot and heat it on the stove over medium heat. Let it gently boil and reduce to concentrate the flavor until only 1/4 cup is left. Set it aside to cool completely. While it reduces and cools, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice and salt in a bowl. Whisk it all together to aerate the dry ingredients and set the bowl aside. Set up a stand mixer with the paddle attachment and combine the brown sugar, butter and apple sauce in its bowl. Beat that all together until it is fluffy.
- Pour in the cooled apple cider, almond milk and the eggs one at a time, letting them each get mixed in before adding the next. Then turn the speed to low and slowly add in the dry ingredients. Get out a cookie sheet and line it with a silicone mat. Dust the mat generously with flour and turn the dough out onto it. Press it out with floured hands to be about 1/2 inch thick and take up most of the sheet. Put the sheet tray of dough in the freezer to chill it for 20 minutes. While it chills line another sheet tray with a silicone mat and dust it well with flour.
- Use a donut cutter to cut perfect little donuts out of the chilled dough, keeping them as close together as possible to yield as many as you can. Transfer them to the second sheet tray as you cut them out, including the donut holes. Put the sheet tray with the cut out donuts and holes back in the freezer to chill again for 10 minutes. While they chill, fill a large stainless steel skillet with deep sides with about 3 inches of canola oil. Heat it up over medium to medium high heat and use a deep fry thermometer to make sure the temperature gets to (and stays around) 350.
- Stir the granulated sugar and remaining teaspoon of cinnamon together in a bowl and transfer it to a small paper bag. Set it aside. Then take out the donuts and fry them in batches in the hot oil for a minute on each side. They should get puffy and gorgeously brown. Remove them to a plate lined with paper towel and get the next batch in. Take the first batch of donuts while they are still hot and get them into the paper bag of cinnamon sugar. Close it tightly and shake it well to coat them. Repeat until all of the donuts are fried and coated. Serve immediately while warm, and seal any leftovers in containers. They will keep for a day or two!