Spiced Apple Doughnuts

Well, I warned you in my last post, but I have a hell of a lot of apple bakes coming your way. First up: Spiced Apple Doughnuts. I really tried to stay away from my usual apple bakes, because there’s already a lot of apple baked goods on here. Apple Cake, apple cinnamon rolls, apple crumble, apple crumble bars, apple pancakes, tarts and pies! You would think that I’m fed up with apple by now, but no. Besides, the apple tree in our garden waves at me every time I look outside, forcing me to get creative.

Since my first foray into the world of doughnut making a few months back, I’ve been dreaming of different flavours. Admittedly, spiced apple doughnuts were never quite at the top of the list, but needs must. One day last week, I called my family to come help us eat a tray of freshly baked doughnuts, stuffed to the brim with a spiced apple filling. In fairness, we didn’t really need help, but six doughnuts between two a bad idea.

Let me be one of the first to tell you: doughnuts are so ridiculously easy to make, and they only involve a small bit of actual hands-on work. Which, quite frankly, is dangerous to know if you’re a doughnut addict like me. The only truly hard bit of the process is when you have to wait for the dough to rise. Taking that into consideration, we were eating freshly baked doughnuts about two & a half hours after I started.

A few things. The filling got some mixed reviews. They ranged from “oh-my-god-this-is-the-best-apple-sauce-I’ve-ever-had-in-my-whole-life!” to “this is too clove-y”. I personally liked it – it tasted of autumn – but bear this in mind if you aren’t too keen on cloves. The doughnuts themselves got absolute rave reviews. Little pillows of happiness. Warm, squishy, fluffy, airy. All of the good words you can describe a doughnut with, truly. Spiced Apple Doughnuts, perfect for autumn.

As an aside, please excuse these lack-luster photos. I loaned my camera to Boyfriend’s brother, and was forced to take these images on my phone. Sigh.

Spiced Apple Doughnuts

Seasonal doughnuts, perfect for the holidays. Pumped full of spiced apple compote.
Yield: 6 large doughnuts
Author: Vicki


for the dough

  • 200 g plain flour
  • 50 g salted butter, cold and cubed
  • 7 g sachet dried yeast
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 80 ml lukewarm full fat milk

for the filling

  • 4 apples, peeled, cored & chopped into small pieces
  • 3 tbsp caster sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick, broken in two
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 1 vanilla pod, cut in half
  • splash of water


  • 1 L vegetable oil/sunflower oil
  • caster sugar, in a bowl, for coating


  • Lightly grease a large bowl with some of the sunflower oil; set aside.
  • Place the flour in a different large bowl & use your fingers to incorporate the butter until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Stir through the yeast & the sugar & make a well in the centre of the bowl.
  • In a small bowl, mix together the egg & the milk. Pour the egg/milk mix into the centre of the large bowl & quickly mix together until a soft dough forms.
  • On a lightly floured surface, carefully knead the dough for about 5-minutes, until it is smooth & supple. Place the dough into the lightly greased bowl, cover the bowl with cling film, & leave in a warm place for 1-hour, or until it has doubled in size. (It was freezing cold the day I made these, so I left the dough to rise in our oven that had been on earlier in the morning, but was still cooling down.)
  • While the dough rises, make the filling. Place all of the filling ingredients together in a large pot & cook it gently over a low heat, until the apples are soft.
  • Remove from the heat, & take out the cinnamon stick, the cloves, & the vanilla pod. Using a food processor, blend the apple mix into a smooth puree. Pour into a different bowl & set aside to cool.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper & set aside.
  • After the dough has risen, remove from the bowl & knock it back. Divide the dough into six evenly sized pieces & roll each into a smooth ball. Place the balls onto the prepared baking sheet, spaced well apart, covered with a layer of lightly oiled cling film, & leave to rise in a warm space for a further 45-minutes, or until doubled in size again.
  • Prepare your doughnut station. Set up a cooling rack with some kitchen paper towel laid across it. Have the bowl of caster sugar nearby. Spoon the spiced apple filling into a piping bag fitted with a medium sized nozzle, & have nearby.
  • In a large, deep pot, heat the sunflower oil (don’t overfill it – only 1/3 full) to 170C. Fry the doughnuts one at a time for 1-minute on each side, until a deep golden brown in colour & cooked all the way through. Once fried, place on the cooling rack until you have finished all the doughnuts.
  • While the doughnuts are still warm, cut a little slit into the side of each and pump as much filling as possible into the centre. Once full, gently roll the doughnuts in the caster sugar & coat completely. Serve warm!

Did you make this recipe? I’d love to know! Please leave a comment & a rating below, or tag me on Instagram @imvcki. Thank you so much for supporting Passionate Baker!

*inspired by the GGBO: Christmas Book.

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