Yummy (and easy!) Baked Doughnuts

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Lately I've been feeling the need to bake on Sunday mornings. This is a good thing because not only is it super tasty, I have to assume that "baby time" will overtake the available "baking time." Time to get some good, dedicated baking in while I still can! One thing I absolutely had to knock off of my list were homemade doughnuts!

I've been wanting to make doughnuts since I was about 8 years old. And yes, I am just now finally getting around to it. However, since I'm not really into frying things in my own home, I opted for a yeast doughnut that could be baked vs. a doughnut that needed to be fried. I also like to think that this made my doughnuts healthier, but with all of the butter and sugar, I'm probably just fooling myself (which I'm totally fine with...ignorance is bliss)!

These were so much fun to make. And easy. I think any novice baker could easily tackle them. The dough was so soft and gorgeous and just smelled like doughnuts! It was divine. And eating these babies right out of the oven (after dipping them in melted butter and a combination of cinnamon and sugar) was an amazing way to spend a Sunday morning.

Since we ended up with about a million and one doughnuts (ok, more like 18 plus doughnut holes) for just the two of us, we had quite a few leftovers. Not to worry. While they are not nearly a good leftover as they were fresh, these were still tasty a day or two later.

Baked Doughnuts with Cinnamon-Sugar
From the Brown Eyed Baker

Yield: 10 to 14 doughnuts (note: mine yielded quite a few more doughnuts!)

For the doughnuts:
1 egg
¼ cup granulated sugar
1 cup milk, heated to 115 degrees
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2½ to 3½ cups unbleached flour, divided, plus more for kneading
1 stick butter (4 ounces), cut into 1″ cubes

For the cinnamon-sugar coating:
1 stick butter (4 ounces), melted
1 cup granulated sugar + 2 tablespoons cinnamon, mixed together

In the bowl of your stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat the egg and sugar on medium speed for about 1 minute. Add in the milk, yeast, salt, and vanilla. Turn the mixer to low, and then add in 2 cups of the flour. Attach the dough hook and then on medium speed, add the butter one piece at a time until smooth. Reduce the speed to low, and then add the rest of the flour until the dough sticks to the hook and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. It should be soft and moist, but not sticky.

Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth. Place in a mixing bowl coated with cooking spray and cover with a damp towel. Let rise until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.

Punch down the dough and roll it out to about ½” thickness. With biscuit cutters, cut out 3″ circles with 1″ holes. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, place the doughnuts 1″ apart. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit on top of the preheating oven until almost doubled in size, about 25 minutes.

Bake until light golden in color, 5-8 minutes. Dip the hot doughnuts in the melted butter and then coat with the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Serve immediately; doughnuts are best eaten the same day they are made.

Working on Good Nutrition

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

For the past few years, I’ve watched what I have eaten pretty closely. I very rarely went out for lunch with co-workers and tried to avoid temptations as much as I could. I also have no problem repeating meals day after day, which makes it easier to watch what I eat (and easier to grocery shop!).

I knew that when I got pregnant, my eating habits might change. While I haven’t personally experienced any drastic dislikes or added anything wild and crazy into my eating habits, I have noticed changes. I went from eating a spinach salad every day for lunch like it was the best thing ever, to absolutely hating spinach. I was addicted to bagels and cream cheese for the first 2 months of pregnancy. I absolutely had to have a burger and fries from the fast food place next to my office at about 8 weeks pregnant, an immediate tip-off to one of my colleagues that I was expecting!

But overall, I’ve worked hard to try and keep my daily eating on the healthier side. It doesn’t mean that I don’t give into temptations (Oreo milkshakes are my friend and I definitely enjoy cupcakes!), but I’ve tried to find meals and snacks that are on the healthier side.

Before pregnancy, weekday meals looked like this:


  • Bowl of Kashi Go Lean Fit cereal with skim milk
  • Small glass of orange juice


  • 1 slice of whole wheat bread with peanut butter
  • Organic baby spinach with sesame oil
  • 1 Dannon Light & Fit Yogurt
  • Fresh pineapple chunks

Afternoon Snack:

  • 1 Banana


  • BLT sandwich made with whole wheat bread, tomato, lettuce, vegan mayonnaise and turkey bacon

This was an average day and was about 1300 calories. I’d also have a morning cup of coffee and drink water throughout the day.

During pregnancy, weekday meals look like this:


  • Bowl of Kashi Go Lean Fit cereal with skim milk
  • Small glass of orange juice
  • Another half glass of orange juice before I run out the door

Morning Snack

  • String cheese


  • Peanut butter sandwich made with 2 slices of whole wheat bread
  • 1 Dannon Light & Fit Yogurt
  • Fresh pineapple chunks
  • 1 or 2 clementines
  • Bag of chips from the vending machine, bowl of soup or other snack (popcorn, pretzels, a few cookies, etc)

Afternoon Snack

  • Banana
  • Organic fruit strip
  • Dannon Light & Fit Yogurt (if I’m really hungry)


  • BLT sandwich made with whole wheat bread, tomato, lettuce, vegan mayonnaise and turkey bacon
  • String cheese
  • Pickle
  • Small bowl of soup if still hungry

Evening Snack

  • Usually one of: clementines, dried fruit/nuts, yogurt, something sweet (if we have cookies or something fun on hand, which isn’t often), a small bowl of Kashi cereal

I’ll also drink coffee a few times during the week, but otherwise I’m drinking water throughout the day.

I still struggle with worry over not getting enough into my diet of what the baby needs. I am incredibly picky and don’t eat a lot of vegetables (I kind of hoped that pregnancy would automatically make me crave broccoli, but no such luck!). So I have worked hard to try and find meals and snacks that pack in some of the nutritional aspects that are recommended during pregnancy, while still falling under the heading of “Things I Actually Like.” A few favorites include:

  • Avocado Toast: 1 avocado lightly mashed with 1-2 teaspoons of olive oil, salt, pepper and a dash of crushed red pepper flakes (if you want a little heat!), spread on whole wheat toast. Can be a snack when you’re really hungry or a meal if you incorporate some healthy sides.
  • Raisins and Almonds: I keep a bag of raw almonds and raisins at my desk. This is a hearty snack and easy to keep on hand.
  • Black Bean Quesadilla: Canned black beans, cheddar cheese, any veggies you like (if you’re not a veggie hater like me!) and 2 whole wheat tortillas. Easy to prepare and beans are great for you during pregnancy!
  • Clementines: We buy a bag each week (while in season) and I keep quite a few in the fridge at work. I love that they’re small so they’re not too filling and they are much easier to peel than an orange!
  • Popcorn: Air pop some popcorn and toss with olive oil and sea salt. You can make a huge batch and have this as a snack for the whole week.

Analyzing my eating and drinking patterns has been incredibly helpful for me and also helps me feel really good about the decisions I have been making on a daily basis for the past 7 months of this pregnancy. I know that at the end of the day, I can’t feel guilty for what I may or may not have eaten, or if I don’t get that extra glass of water in. All I can do is try my best, make the decisions that seem right at the moment and know that I am doing whatever I can to give my baby what he/she needs. Even if I really, truly hate eating my vegetables!