Gluten Free Apple Cider Donuts
These gluten free apple cider donuts are fluffy, soft, and bursting with fresh apple cider flavor! They are way better than any pumpkin patch or apple orchard. In addition, these gluten free donuts have a sweet cinnamon sugar coating. They are quick and easy and so delicious!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- These gluten free apple cider donuts are light and fluffy!
- The apple cider flavor is strong and delicious.
- They are just like the donuts at your favorite pumpkin patch.
- They have a soft texture.
- Great for breakfast, an after school snack or dessert.
- These donuts are NOT dry or dense!
- This recipe is gluten free and nut free.
- Check out these Almond Flour Apple Muffins for another fall recipe!
- For the vanilla version, these Gluten Free Donuts are delicious.
Ingredients & Substitutions
Use room temperature butter for best results. Cold butter does not cream well with sugar. If you forget to take your butter out prior to baking to soften, microwave butter for 7 seconds. I have not tried this recipe with coconut oil, but it is worth a try for dairy free.
Both brown sugar and granulated sugar add the sweetness to these donuts. Tightly pack brown sugar. I have not tried this with coconut sugar or a Keto sweetener but I imagine any granulated sweetener would be fine.
The eggs help bind the batter together. Additionally, the eggs add the fluffy cake like texture. Do not use a Vegan substitute, chia eggs or flax eggs.
A little vanilla extract adds some flavor.
Gluten free 1 to 1 flour or all purpose flour both work well. I used King Arthur Flour 1 to 1 flour.
Baking soda is the leavening agent that helps these donuts rise while baking. Baking powder works too.
The cinnamon and nutmeg add the classic fall flavors! These donuts taste like comfort food and they have a strong cinnamon flavor.
The apple cider obviously adds the most important flavor! Living in Maine, I am lucky enough to have access to farm fresh apple cider, but store bought works too. If you do not have any cider, apple juice can be used in its place.
Taste & Texture
These gluten free apple cider donuts have a strong cider and cinnamon flavor. The cinnamon sugar coating also has strong flavor.
These donuts are light, soft and fluffy. They are not dense or dry at all. They are cake like!
How to Make
First, preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray a donut pan with nonstick spray.
In a stand mixer, beat butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar for 2 minutes. Beat until no clumps of butter remain.
Then, add in eggs and vanilla extract. Stir to combine.
Add in all remaining ingredients except apple cider. Stir to combine.
Then, slowly pour in apple cider as the stand mixer is stirring. Stir until a thick batter is formed.
Add batter to a Ziplock bag. Cut off the corner of bag.
Pipe batter into donut cavities, filling each a little over halfway.
Bake for 12 to 14 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Allow donuts to cool for 5 minutes before inverting pan to release donuts onto wire rack.
Then, make cinnamon sugar coating. Combine cinnamon and granulated sugar in a shallow bowl.
Melt 2 tablespoons butter. Brush each donut all over with melted butter. Then, place each donut in sugar mixture. Spoon sugar all over each donut.
Expert Tips & Tricks
Use room temperature butter for best results. It is much easier to cream with sugars than cold butter.
Piping the donut batter into the donut pan is easier than trying to spoon the batter in. Since the batter is thick, piping works best.
Really grease the donut pan with nonstick spray. This helps them easily release from pan after baking.
Bake until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Do not over bake!
Allow the donuts to cool for 5 minutes in pan. Then invert pan and allow donuts to release onto a wire rack.
There are so many different types and brands of donut pans. They vary in size, shape and material.
I highly recommend the Wilton donut pan which has 3 ¾ inch donut cavities. I have tried the silicone nonstick donut pans but have not had success with them.
Cinnamon Sugar Coating
The cinnamon sugar coating is what takes these gluten free donuts from good to great!
The ratios used yield a sugar coating with slight cinnamon flavor. Feel free to add more cinnamon if desired.
Brushing the donuts with melted butter before coating in sugar mixture allows the sugar to stick. Do not skip that step!
How to Serve & Store
Serve donuts once they are coated! These are absolutely delicious served warm.
Store donuts covered at room temperature for up to 3 days. Or, store in fridge or up to 7 days.
Frequently Asked Questions
Use a gluten free 1 to 1 flour. I love King Arthur Flour gluten free 1 to 1 flour.
Sure! If you do not have cider, apple juice can be used instead.
Yes, apple cider is gluten free.
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Get the Recipe: Gluten Free Apple Cider Donuts
Apple Cider Donuts
Cinnamon Sugar Coating
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tbsp butter
- First, preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray a donut pan with nonstick spray.
- In a stand mixer, beat room temperature butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar for 2 minutes or until no clumps of butter remain.
- Then, add in eggs and vanilla extract. Stir to combine.
- Add in gluten free flour, baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir until a thick dough forms.
- Then, slowly stir in apple cider as you are stirring. Stir until a thick dough is formed.
- Add dough to a Ziplock bag. Cut off the corner of the bag and pipe batter into greased donut pan. Fill each cavity a little more than halfway.
- Bake for 12 to 14 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
- Remove from oven. Allow donuts to cool for 5 minutes in pan before inverting pan and releasing donuts onto wire rack.
- Then, make cinnamon sugar coating. Combine granulated sugar and cinnamon in shallow bowl. Stir to combine.
- Melt the 2 tablespoons butter. Brush each donut with melted butter all over. Then place each donut in sugar mixture and coat both sides. Repeat for all donuts.
- I use a Wilton donut pan that has 3 ¾ inch donut cavities. If yours are larger or smaller, baking time may vary.
- Make sure there are no clumps of butter in batter.
- Gluten free 1 to 1 flour or all purpose flour can be used. I used King Arthur Flour gluten free 1 to 1 flour.
- The donut batter will be thick.
- I suggest piping the batter into the donut cavities, but you can use a spoon as well. it may be more messy or difficult that way though.
- Bake until a toothpick inserted into donut comes out clean. Mine took about 14 minutes.
- Brushing the donuts with melted butter before tossing in cinnamon sugar allows the sugar mixture to stick to the donuts.
- Store donuts covered at room temperature for up to 3 days.
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