These baked cinnamon sugar donuts are soft, light, fluffy, and absolutely delicious for breakfast or dessert!
Who doesn’t love cinnamon sugar donuts???
Whether served with a hot cup of coffee for breakfast or on their own as an afternoon snack, these ultra soft and fluffy baked donuts are always a fantastic choice.
Guests will think they came straight from a fancy bakery or café. And yet the recipe is so easy to make, right in your own kitchen!
You may also like this Brownie in a Mug
The best baked cinnamon sugar donuts
Forget those boxes of store bought Krispy Kreme and Dunkin Donuts. These homemade old fashioned cake donuts are baked, not fried.
I actually prefer them over glazed donuts for breakfast, because their taste and texture remind me of muffins or coffee cake. And they pair really well with coffee or tea.
The baked cinnamon sugar donuts (or doughnuts) are naturally egg free and can also be dairy free, gluten free, and vegan.
Cinnamon sugar donut ingredients
The donut recipe calls for flour, water, cinnamon, salt, baking powder, pure vanilla extract, sweetener, and a fat source or applesauce or mashed banana for low fat.
Flours that work include white or spelt flour, oat flour, or gluten free all purpose flour. Others such as whole wheat flour, almond flour, or coconut flour may work with some modifications, but I have not tried these and therefore cannot recommend them.
Sweetener options include pure maple syrup, honey, or agave. If you’d like to use sugar, increase the amount to half a cup and increase the water to two third cup.
Also make this Almond Flour Banana Bread
How to make baked cinnamon sugar donuts
Start by greasing a donut pan or mini muffin pan. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Whisk together the water or apple juice, white or apple cider vinegar, vanilla, oil or nut butter (or applesauce or banana), and the sweetener in a large mixing bowl.
Once the oven is preheated, stir in the flour, salt, cinnamon, and baking powder to form a donut batter. Do not overmix.
Place the donut pan on the oven’s center rack. Bake for eight minutes or until the baked cinnamon sugar donuts have risen and a toothpick inserted into the center of a cinnamon donut comes out mostly clean.
Let cool before removing from the pan and dipping in cinnamon sugar. I recommend spraying the donuts with oil so the topping adheres better, but it is not required.
Note: I have not yet tried making the donuts in an air fryer. If you experiment before I do, be sure to report back with results.
Homemade cinnamon sugar
This is possibly the easiest recipe you could imagine.
To make your own cinnamon sugar, simply stir two tablespoons of ground cinnamon into half a cup of sugar. You can use regular white sugar, unrefined coconut sugar, date sugar, evaporated cane juice, or granulated erythritol for sugar free.
Need less? Use one tablespoon of cinnamon and a fourth cup of sugar. Or half a tablespoon of cinnamon and two tablespoons of sugar.
The DIY recipe is easy to scale up or down as desired.
Baked cinnamon sugar donut holes
If you do not own a donut pan or prefer to make mini donuts, the first option is to bake the donuts in a mini muffin pan. For smaller donut hole munchkins, only fill the pan halfway up.
Or you can use a Donut Hole Baking Pan – yes, these things exist!
Pouring the batter into a cake pop machine or a donut maker machine should also work, although I have not personally tried these options yet.
Recipe storage tips
Let the cinnamon sugar baked donuts cool completely.
Then take any leftover donuts and place them in a container with a layer of parchment paper in between each donut so they do not stick together.
Cover the container, leaving a small opening to allow excess moisture to escape, which will guard against soggy donuts the next day.
Once in the container, donuts can be stored at room temperature for one or two days. I recommend covering fully and refrigerating or freezing after this time for freshness.
Thaw frozen donuts in the microwave or on the counter before enjoying.
Watch the cinnamon sugar donut recipe video, above
Baked Cinnamon Sugar Donuts
- 1/3 cup water or apple juice
- 1 tsp white or cider vinegar
- 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 3 tbsp oil, nut butter, or applesauce or mashed banana for fat-free
- 1/3 cup pure maple syrup or agave (here's a sugar free donut recipe)
- 1 cup flour, loosely packed
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp salt
- Cinnamon Sugar Coating: combine 2 tbsp cinnamon with 1/2 cup granulated sweetener of choice
- Whisk liquid ingredients in a bowl. Grease a donut pan or mini muffin pan. Preheat oven to 350 F. Stir in remaining ingredients. Bake 8 minutes or until donuts have risen and are cooked through. Let cool before removing from the pan. Dip in cinnamon sugar. I like to first spray with oil spray (or brush with oil or butter) so the cinnamon sugar adheres better.*The recipe works with white, spelt, oat, or gluten free all purpose flour. I have not tried almond or whole wheat so cannot recommend those.View Nutrition Facts
Have you made this recipe?
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Oh my goodness these looked so good when I saw them on your Facebook page that I had to make them this morning. They are wonderful!
Kate Monier says
Wow, these are amazing! I used apple juice, agave, gluten-free flour, avacado oil, and coconut sugar, and baked them in a mini-donut griddle. My very picky toddler kept coming back for more! A little crispy, a little chewy- perfection!
CCK Media Team says
This makes us so happy 🙂
Pam Peterson says
I love your recipes! My daughter has dairy and egg allergies and I am on weight watchers. Your desserts are the only tried and true ones I keep. My favorites are the make out pie, black bean brownies, and berry coffee cake muffins you made for Father’s Day (or your dad’s birthday) thank you much for making our family meals together yummy and healthy!
I do have a request. WW has a new program and there are some cooking blogs like hungry girl and pound dropper that you can push a button for WW personal points. This downloads directly into the recipe section of our app and calculates points. Wondering if you could set that up for all of your adoring WW followers. I also think it would benefit you from no longer having to figure out points. If you are able to I would love to send the word out on all the WW social media sites I’m a part of. Also can’t wait to try these donuts. I’m from New England so I’m going to use all applesauce and cider to see if I can get them to taste like cider donuts I miss so much.
CCK Media Team says
Hi Pam, we did hear they changed their formula but honestly have no idea how to calculate the new one (and since we are not members, we aren’t able to read up on it on their site in depth). The old system has a free online calculator that we didn’t set up ourselves; unfortunately that’s as tech-savvy as we get over here, but we will absolutely try to delve further into it. Bloggers wish WW would stop changing their system because it makes all the numbers we’ve included for the thousands of recipes on our sites outdated and we really want to offer information that will help people!
Hi! When you say nut butter, do you mean peanut butter? Thank you! Can’t wait to make these!
CCK Media Team says
Peanut, or something like almond or cashew or macadamia for a more neutral flavor 🙂
Tammy S says
I made these with whole wheat flour and they are delicious! I also made the recipe with 1/4 cup of cocoa to make chocolate Donuts, very good as well!
I used water and applesauce as well.
These donuts were delicious!
Well i woke up this morning having a craving for something cinnamon and came across your donut. I had everything except applesauce. Spelt flour instead and topped the beauties with butter and coconut sugar cinnamon. Light! Fluffy and just what i wanted to start my day off. What a treat!!!
Donna C. says
So EASY to make. NOT labor intensive. So DELICIOUS!!! As always Katie, your recipes are true to their word. Healthy, easy to execute, and delicious. Keep them coming. You are my “go-to-girl” for all things delicious & nutritious.
These are delicious. Very crumbly though. I suspect that my oat flour was too fine as the cookies I made last night were also very crumbly. (I used Bob’s Red Mill).
I look forward to trying these again. (I’ll just use homemade oat flour next time, see if that makes a difference).
Nicky P. says
First and foremost, I LOVE donuts! I have never tried to make them at home. I just made these and they are INCREDIBLE! As promised, they are light and airy and perfect cinnamon joy! I used granulated sugar in the dough and followed your modifications. PERFECTION!! I also love that I didn’t have to buy any additional ingredients, as I had everything in my pantry. Thank you for these gems!!
well, I researched how to make donuts without a donut pan before preparing the recipe. Unfortunately, the techniques don’t work for cake donuts. The batter is very tasty, though!
Forest Kreek says
Nice, They taste so good. How did you find it?
N. Sandoval says
We loved these. Followed the recipe EXACTLY for the first time. Used water, oil, and apple cider vinegar as that’s what I had in my pantry. Used the maple syrup. Only change made was more cinnamon in the topping. With so few ingredients I wasn’t sure what to expect. Vinegar in a donut? But I had faith and it was rewarded. Delicious and delightful donuts!
Small problem we have a LARGER eating family. Six at a time is laborious. Can this recipe be doubled?
CCK Media Team says
It definitely can! Thank you for making them 🙂