Start to Finish: 1 hour
Fresh, hot doughnuts make any morning a little more special, but you don’t have to rely on your local doughnut shop’s baking schedule. You’ll need special doughnut pans to achieve the characteristic shape, although you can substitute muffin pans if you won’t miss the hole in the center. This is adapted from a recipe published by Betty Crocker.
- Cooking spray
- 3/4 cup cake mix, any flavor
- 1 cup biscuit mix
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup milk — whole milk for a richer doughnut, or 2 percent for a lower-calorie version
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1/2 cup prepared frosting in your choice of flavor
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon water or flavored liqueur
- Food colorings, optional
- Sprinkles, chopped nuts, toasted coconut and other toppings, optional
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Coat 2 doughnut pans or muffin tins with cooking spray.
In a large bowl or a stand mixer, blend the cake mix, biscuit mix, sugar and salt until thoroughly combined. In a separate bowl, whip the eggs and milk together. Add the liquid ingredients to the dry and mix on low speed until these are combined as well. Whip on medium-high speed for 2 minutes to incorporate air into the mixture. This will help the doughnuts retain a light, fluffy texture.
Spoon the batter into the prepared doughnut pans. Do not overfill. The batter should come no more than 3/4 of the way to the top to leave room for rising. Bake on the center rack for 8 to 10 minutes, rotating the pans once halfway through cooking. The doughnuts are done when a toothpick inserted in the thickest part comes out clean, or when they spring back when touched lightly. If you use muffin tins, the doughnuts may take an extra minute or 2 to fully cook. Rely on the toothpick method to test for doneness rather than the time.
Cool the doughnuts in the pans for 10 minutes, then remove them to a cooling rack. Let the doughnuts cool to nearly room temperature.
While the doughnuts cool, mix the frosting and water in a wide bowl to form a glaze. Add food colorings if desired. When the doughnuts are cool enough to handle, dip the top half in the glaze and return to the cooling rack. Cover with sprinkles, chopped nuts, toasted coconut or other toppings as desired.
Experiment with various combinations of cake mix and frosting flavors.
Substitute flavored liqueurs for the water in the glaze for an adult take on classic glazed doughnuts. Coffee liqueur and chocolate work well together, as do vanilla frosting and orange liqueur.
For a gluten-free version, simply substitute gluten-free cake mix and biscuit mix. Depending on the brand of cake mix you choose, you may need to add an extra tablespoon or 2 of milk to the batter to achieve a consistency between cake batter and biscuit dough.
Be sure the doughnuts are fully cooled before eating to avoid burns.