Donut 101

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Donut 101

By Paula Deen Test Kitchen

There is nothing like one of Paula’s Homemade Yeast Donuts for a special morning treat or afternoon snack. Paula says they are about as close to heaven as you can get that early in the morning! Let us show you how easy they are to make.

Homemade Yeast Donuts
Makes a dozen 2” to 3” donuts and holes

3/4 cup warm milk
1 packet active dry yeast
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour plus extra for dusting your dough and board
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 egg yolks
Nonstick cooking spray
Peanut oil for frying (Can substitute vegetable oil)

1 stick butter, room temperature
2 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 tablespoons hot water
Sprinkles for garnish



Step 1 (mixing the dough): In the bowl of a standing mixer, pour warm milk, sugar and yeast. Let stand until yeast starts to foam. About 10 minutes. Attach dough hook to standing mixer while yeast is activating. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour and salt.  Add flour mixture, butter and egg yolks to the yeast mixture and beat on medium speed until it comes together and forms a ball. About 3-5 minutes. Cover the bowl and allow the dough to rise in a warm place for 1 hour.


Step 2 (cutting out the donuts): Spray a sheet tray with nonstick cooking spray and set aside. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and roll out to a 1/2” thickness. Using a 2”-3” donut cutter (you can also use a drinking glass or biscuit cutter to cut out your donuts and a plastic bottle cap to cut out the holes), cut out donuts and transfer them and their holes to the prepared baking sheet, spacing them 1” apart. Spray the tops of the donuts and holes with nonstick cooking spray and cover with plastic wrap. Let stand in a warm place until they have almost doubled in size, about 30 minutes.


Step 3 (frying the donuts): Using a deep fryer or dutch oven, heat oil to 350ºF. Line a baking sheet with paper towels or brown paper and set aside. Working in batches, fry the donuts and donut holes until lightly golden brown, about 1 minute per side. Transfer to the paper lined baking sheet and let cool for 10 minutes before glazing.

Step 4 (glazing the donuts): To make the glaze: In a large mixing bowl using a hand mixer or whisk, mix all ingredients together. Mixture should be thin. Add more hot water if needed to thin out the glaze. Keep glaze warm until ready to use.

Dip the donuts, one at a time, into the warm glaze, covering the top half of each donut with glaze. Dip glaze side down into a bowl filled with your favorite sprinkles and place on a tray to set for 10 minutes. Serve immediately.

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Reader Comments:


I don't have a bread maker or a mixer of any kind. Can I still make these as well as Beignets with out a mixer??? I want to make some beignets for my husband who never got the pleasure of having them when we lived in Gulf Port Mississippi.PLEASE let me know. Paula both my husband and I LOVE you. And call you The Butter Queen. ( It's not bad ) and buy your cakes from Wal*Mart as much as we can. Also can you tell me how much Tobasco goes into pecan pie?

By MaryAlice on August 06, 2011


I would just like to know how long your donut stays soft after frying because most recipes I tried the softness of the donut only last 1hr exposed to room temp. I tried and bought donuts from dunkin and theirs stays soft even after 24hrs in room temp, how do they do that? what do they add to make it stay soft? Please help as I also want to sell doughnuts. Thank.

By Louelljoy Muyco on March 01, 2011

I also don’t have the standing mixer but I’m going to try this with the bread machine with mixing dough.  This recipe sounds great! And yes, maybe even the grandkids will enjoy.

By Chris Michelson on September 03, 2010

Paula, I have pans in the shape of donuts, but no receipes. I would like to make the filled donuts that can be baked, not fried. I would also like for them to taste good, we love the ones with the pudding type filling. Got any receipes for us?

By Pat Pattillo on June 10, 2010

I think I heard her once say her hair color was called silver lady.

By Chelsea on June 04, 2010

can this be done without the standing mixer we dont have one please let me know our kids want to make donuts tonight thanks mucho/much

By carolina on June 04, 2010

Hey Paula, I have seven Grandchildren and they Love donuts. When they come over Grammy’s house were always making something good to eat. They range from 3 to 14yrs. My question is, If someone don’t have a stand up mixer what would you sugest they use?

By Brenda Sue Denton on May 06, 2010

I’m voting with Rosie, even though I love your recipes and you dearly (you feel like an Aunt to me) I really want to know what ingredients are in the magic potion they use on your hair! I’ve been wanting to switch over my color for so long. It’s blond (but I know she’s gonna go gray in a few years!) Take care and God bless ya’ll!

By linda caldwell on May 05, 2010

I will be sure and try this recipe. I have yet to be disappointed on any of Paula’s recipes that I have tried. Yeast recipes always scare me, but this sound easy. Paula, will ever get over to this side of the coast for any of your tours?

By Penny Rieck on May 04, 2010

This is one I’m going to try! We have also been to the Lady & Sons Restaurant - twice!, but didn’t get to see Paula or the sons either time. The food was wonderful and if we are in Savannah again, we will probably stop in again.

By Linda Looney on May 04, 2010

Sorry..I found the printable recipe and can’t wait to try it….

Vi Farr of Ocala, Fl.

By Vi Farr on May 04, 2010

I like the sounds of this recipe but when I tried to print it the whole recipe didn’t print. I looked to see if there was a place where it said print but there wasn’t one. Is there some place else I can find a printable recipe of the Donut 101? Thank You…..

Vi Farr of Ocala, Fl.

By Vi Farr on May 04, 2010

I have a question that is not related to cooking, even though I could use all the help I can get.  I love you hair color.  I know you don’t do your hair ,but do you have any ideal what the color is called ?

By rosie loyd on May 01, 2010

Yummy!  I can almost taste them now!

By Susan Adkins on April 27, 2010

Yum Yum.  I’ll have to try these donuts.  Just wanted to tell Paula that I visited her restaurant a few years back and was so disapointed not to see her or her sons. But, the food was wonderful. We had such a great time. Hope to get back to Georgia some day.

By Sally Klinski on April 27, 2010

I think this Donut Receipe will be fun to make with my 11 year old gran daughter. She Loved donuts!!!!!!

By Linda Piraino on April 27, 2010

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