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Homemade Apple Cider Donuts

Homemade Apple Cider Donuts
16 votes, 3.94 avg. rating (78% score)

As I said last year in my “C is for Cider Donuts” contribution to the Autumn A-Z package:

Visit an apple orchard this fall and you’re just as likely to see folks munching on golden-brown apple-cider doughnuts as you are actual apples. Beyond the standard cake doughnut, cider doughnuts have apple cider added right into the batter, lending a touch of sweetness and a subtle cider tang that most people find dangerously addictive.

This year I upped the ante and made a batch of homemade apple cider donuts myself using a recipe from Yankee senior lifestyle editor Amy Traverso’s The Apple Lover’s Cookbook, turning my autumn donut dreams (plus a rough dozen of my family and co-worker’s) into a reality.

apple cider donuts

Photo/Art by Aimee SeaveyFresh and sweet apple cider donuts.

Homemade cider donuts start with (what else?) apple cider. Boiled cider lends a stronger flavor, and to make it at home you’ll need to boil 1 1/2 cups of cider down to 1/3 cup before proceeding with the batter, which also gets an extra dose of tang from the addition of buttermilk. The batter (turned dough) will be very soft, so once you start handling it you’ll want to make sure your hands and every surface it comes into contact with are floured.

cider donuts

Photo/Art by Aimee SeaveyBoiled cider adds concentrated apple cider flavor.

Even with the flour, you’ll want to send the dough to the freezer or fridge as necessary to keep it chilled and firm for cutting and handling. Also, if you don’t have a traditional donut cutter (who does?), feel free to use two floured concentric biscuit cutters to cut out your donut shapes. Twisting the cutter as you release it will help get a cleaner cut. I kept a small, shallow bowl of flour nearby so I could dip the cutter in it as needed.

apple cider donuts

Photo/Art by Aimee SeaveyCutting out the donut shapes.

Next up is the tricky stage — the frying. I used my large, heavy Dutch oven and it took a gallon of oil to get the correct 3-inches of oil needed for frying. Just try not to think about it…

You’ll want a thermometer here to make sure the oil is hot enough before you start adding the donuts. The kind that clips right onto the pot is best. Once that oil gets hot it’s dangerous and you’ll want to minimize splatter.

apple cider donuts

Photo/Art by Aimee SeaveyCider donuts frying.

Then it’s time to fry up some donuts! Make sure you’ve got plenty of double-layer paper towels nearby to drain off the oil as you remove the donuts from the pot. I used a large slotted spatula to transfer them out and over.

Once the donuts have cooled enough that you can handle them, add a good amount of sugar to a bowl along with a generous few shakes of cinnamon, mix them together, and gave each donut a cinnamon-sugar bath. The donut holes you can roll in the sugar, but for the large donuts just settle them into the bowl, twist them, then flip and repeat.

apple cider donuts

Photo/Art by Aimee SeaveySweet, sugary cider donut perfection.

Of course, you could skip making the donut holes by repeatedly re-rolling the dough and only frying the circles, but sometimes a 2-bite donut hole is exactly the right amount of sugar and grease, so they’re good to have on hand.

apple cider donut holes

Photo/Art by Aimee SeaveyDonut centers make perfect 2-bite donut holes.

Finally, homemade cider donuts taste best when eaten on the day they’re made, or within 24 hours, so make sure you’ve got family and friends to share them with! I know my Yankee co-workers were glad to help me out…I bet yours would, too.

Happy apple cider donut season!

Homemade Apple Cider Donuts Recipe Links

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Aimee Seavey

Author:

Aimee Seavey

Biography:

Assistant Editor Aimee Seavey is a staff writer for Yankee Magazine and assists in the development and promotion of content for YankeeMagazine.com through blogging and social media outlets.

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2 Responses to Homemade Apple Cider Donuts

  1. Amy Catherine Adams September 22, 2013 at 8:05 am #

    hi aimee…i want to make these. i am ready. i am trying not to think about the gallon of oil. but after showing my husband the recipe because he is my number one fan, he asked me, what do you do with the oil after the frying?

    any information about the discarding of the oil is so appreciated.

    thank you for all you do and the inspiration!

    • Aimee Seavey September 22, 2013 at 6:14 pm #

      Hi Amy! Excellent question! After you’ve fried the donuts let the oil cool to room temperature, then pour into a container and discard in the trash. The original bottle is a handy thing to hang onto for this. We hope you make the donuts and enjoy them!

  2. Angela March 10, 2014 at 11:05 am #

    Hi, ladies. I saw this and had to comment. I make thing like this all the time and I never throw out my oil. I filter it with a coffee filter and store it in its container. Not to worry about bacteria, the next time you use it the heat will take care of any of that. It to expensive to throw it out!!!!!

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