Your kids will look forward to these hot and fresh Baked Apple Cider Donuts. You don’t need to wait for a trip to the orchard to pick up a dozen; celebrate the fall season with your family and make these baked donuts at home.
The season is starting to shift and the crisp breeze of autumn always makes me smile. Falling leaves, cozy sweaters, and hot apple cider — fall is definitely my favorite season. We recently discovered the joy of Baked Apple Cider Donuts when we received an advance copy of The Ultimate Kids’ Baking Book. These donuts are baked right in your oven (so much easier than wrestling with a deep fryer) and they have a classic cinnamon-sugar coating that is divine.
What I am loving about this new cookbook is that it empowers kids to take charge in the kitchen. The recipe instructions are written for budding bakers who want to take the lead. The book encourages kids to master everyday kitchen skills allowing them to become next-level bakers. In other words, my girls LOVE this book and I love watching how it engages them.
My kids made these must-try cinnamon sugar donuts this week. They were so delicious that I am 110% sure making them each autumn will be a fall family tradition moving forward. You’ve got to bookmark the cinnamon donuts recipe below, these are THE BEST Apple Cider Donuts ever. Below are three ways you can make breakfast special with these baked donuts this season.
3 Ways To Make Breakfast Special With These Baked Donuts!
Here are three ways you can make an autumn breakfast special for your family. If you’re ready to check out the apple donut recipe now, feel free to jump ahead!
1. Celebrate The Fall Equinox With Apple Cider Donuts
Celebrate the autumn equinox and the season change with these easy apple cider donuts. The official first day of autumn can shift from year to year falling between September 21 through 24. Don’t be beholden to your calendar; celebrate on the weekend if that works best for your family schedule.
Start by having your kids help make the donuts, after you pop them in the oven set a timer on your phone, and head outside. Play in the leaves or just throw down a blanket for a fall picnic with warm apple cider AND warm cider donuts.
Sometimes the simplest activities are the most memorable!
2. Apple Orchard + Apple Cinnamon Donuts = Fall Heaven
There’s nothing quite like biting into an organic apple straight off the branch. While some families head to the orchard to pick and buy massive amounts of apples, we go for an unbusy afternoon of connecting with the kids.
Truth be told, I’m not big on peeling and chopping apple after apple after apple in order to make apple recipes. I love that this apple donut recipe uses cider instead — so simple!
And the best place to buy cider?!? The local orchard, of course.
3. The Day After Thanksgiving Breakfast Idea!
You work hard in the kitchen on Thanksgiving, take a break on Friday. The kids are home for a long holiday weekend, and if you have family visiting like we do, you’ve likely got cousins staring at their phones and grandparents asking, “How can I help?” Be grateful for the offer — print the cider donut recipe below and send them to the kitchen!
Put the kids in charge of setting up Thanksgiving brunch or a breakfast bar. This, of course, includes Cider Donuts and other delicious leftovers from the holiday feast.
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BONUS TIP: Apple Recipes Make Any Autumn Day Special
The truth is, you don’t need an equinox, day-trip, or holiday to enjoy these Baked Apple Cider Donuts — they make ANY autumn day special.
Got rain in the forecast? Get out the ingredients.
Tough day at school? Connect while making this donut recipe.
Making fresh coffee? Oh my, you need a donut in your hand.
These baked donuts are sure to make your day better.
Baked Apple Cider Donuts
Get a printable copy of these delicious Apple Cider Donuts here. Again, a bit thank you to Tiffany the author of The Ultimate Kids’ Baking Book for letting us share her recipe with you today!
- 1 fresh lemon
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp nutmeg
- ⅓ cup apple cider
- ¼ cup buttermilk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 stick butter, softened
- ½ cup brown sugar, packed
- ½ cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 4 tbsp butter, melted
- ½ cup sugar mixed with ½ tsp cinnamon
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray 2 6-well donut pans with nonstick baking spray and set them aside.
- Wash and dry the lemon. Use a microplane zester to rub the lemon and remove the yellow part of the peel. This is called the lemon zest. Place the zest in a small bowl and set aside for later.
- In your large mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, spices, and the saved lemon zest. Whisk for 30 seconds to evenly combine. Measure the apple cider and buttermilk in a large measuring cup and add the vanilla extract. Stir them together.
- Add the butter, brown sugar, and regular sugar into a large mixing bowl. Beat them on medium-high until light and fluffy, 3 - 4 minutes. Crack the eggs into a small bowl to check for shells. Add them to the butter mixture and beat them until just combined.
- Add half of the flour mixture to the butter and beat it on low until combined. Add half of the cider mixture and beat it on low until combined. Repeat with the remaining flour and cider mixture.
- Pour the batter into a large zip-top baggie. Seal the bag and trim a small corner with a scissors. Pipe the batter into the prepared donut pans so each well is ⅔ full. Bake for 15 - 18 minutes or until the donuts bounce back when gently pressed.
- While the donuts are baking, prepare the topping. Place the butter in a microwave safe bowl and heat it for 30 seconds on HIGH or until melted. Then mix together the cinnamon and sugar in a shallow bowl.
- Turn the finished donuts out onto a cooling rack. Place the rack over a large piece of parchment paper. Brush each donut with melted butter using a pastry brush or carefully drizzle it and spread it with a spoon. Then dip each one in the cinnamon sugar.
- Let the donuts dry for 10 minutes before serving.
Can we circle back for a moment?
Slowing Down to Make Autumn Traditions
Our family has been making changes to lead an intentionally unbusy life. For us, that includes slowing down with our kids in the kitchen. Baking together offers an opportunity to not only cook but connect.
I love, love, love that The Ultimate Kids’ Baking Book provides recipes for all the major holidays, but also includes recipes like this that you can choose to use to celebrate everyday life. It empowers kids to be grateful for and celebrate the people they love through baking. This book is especially wonderful if your child’s Love Language is acts of service or gift-giving!
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I admit I am often suckered into flipping through a book by its front cover (how cute is this?!?!), but the back cover is what caught my attention. If you’re on your phone and the print is too small, pop over to Amazon to read the back cover. This book would make a great holiday gift for the little baker in your house.
If you’re looking for more ways to slow down and connect with the kids this autumn, be sure to check out our list of 20 Fun Fall Activities for Kids (That Moms Will Secretly Love).
Happy baking, my friend!
Love this Cider Donuts recipe? Sharing it would make our week. 💛
It would make our week if you took a second to share this Baked Apple Cider Donut recipe on your favorite social media spot. (That’s how we know we’re on the right track and should continue writing more posts like this!)
P.S. A huge THANK YOU to Tiffany Dahle for sharing an advance copy of this book, these pics, and this recipe with our families. I am so thankful to have this ahhhh-mazing baker as part of our lives. For more day-to-day recipe inspiration, find Tiffany and her family celebrating the everyday over on Peanut Blossom.