Baked Sour Cream Apple Cider Doughnuts
Ok this is so nerdy but I was actually inspired to make these from a cute little love story/book I listened to on my cousin’s Audible account recently. (LOL, my mom, aunt, and I all mooch off her account, she buys like a million books!). The book is called The Recipe Box and it’s a cute little story about love and family and finding your place in the world. The family has a fruit orchard in scenic Michigan and they have a pie shop where they make all sorts of pies and cakes and treats featuring the fruits from their land. The book weaves several recipes throughout, which is actually kind of fun to listen to. One of the recipes is sour cream apple cider doughnuts, but they were fried. I have had my fill of making fried doughnuts for a bit, and I really wanted you guys to be able to make them and I know frying is scary/intimidating/annoying AF. So I created this baked version which is still so tender and moist (why have we not discovered a better, less gross word for this) and full of apple flavor and warm spices. The touch of sour cream in the batter gives them a nice tang and a tender crumb, sort of reminiscent of sour cream coffee cake. When I was testing these a few weeks ago, I held a poll on IG stories asking your opinion (as I often do) about whether they should be glazed or sugar/cinnamon coated. I was surprised that about 2/3 of you said glazed! But I also got several DMs adamantly exclaiming they MUST BE sugar/cinnamon as is tradition! I, myself am still so torn but I ended up going with cinnamon/sugar cause you don’t monkey with tradition (name that movie!).
A few notes on the recipe: if you don’t have some already, you’ll need some doughnut pans. Alternatively, you could make these in to muffins but come on, doughnuts are more fun! They’re pretty affordable and you’ll probably find yourself whipping up a quick batch of baked doughnuts on the regular once you have them. For the cider, I highly recommend you do reduce it. I know, I know. What a pain in the ass, right? But if you’re going to go to the trouble of making an apple cider doughnut, let’s actually make them taste like apple cider! Boiling the fresh cider down really concentrates the apple flavor and that’s what we want. You can buy boiled cider by the bottle if you’d rather but I didn’t want you to have to buy a bunch of things off the internet just to make these so it’s just as easy to buy fresh cider and spend a little time reducing it. We’ll also reserve a couple tablespoons for the butter mixture to dip ‘em in before their cinnamon sugar shower and that helps reinforce that apple flavor even more. I borrowed this idea from Melissa of The Faux Martha and it’s genius! I hope you give these a try and be sure to share on Instagram using #allpurposeflourchild and tagging me (@all.purpose.flour.child) if you do!
Baked Sour Cream Apple Cider Doughnuts
makes about 12 doughnuts
2 c all-purpose flour
1 t baking powder
1/4 t baking soda
1/2 t Himalayan pink salt
1 t ground cinnamon
1/4 t ground nutmeg
1/4 t ground cloves
1 1/4 c apple cider (preferably fresh), reduced to 1/2 c + 2 T (reserve the 2 T for coating)
1/4 c full-fat sour cream
2 T unsalted butter, room temperature
1 large egg, room temperature
1 t vanilla extract
1/2 c brown sugar
1/4 c organic granulated cane sugar
4 T unsalted butter, melted
2 T reserved reduced apple cider
3/4 c organic granulated cane sugar
1 t cinnamon
pinch of Himalayan pink salt
reduce apple cider
In a small saucepan, pour in the 1 and 1/4 cup fresh apple cider and let come to a boil then reduce heat to medium and allow it to continue to simmer until reduced to 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons. I poured it back into my measuring cup periodically then just eyeballed it when it was just a tad over the 1/2 cup line. Allow to cool completely before proceeding with batter. Yes, this is an annoying step but if you want these to taste apple-y, it’s a necessary one.
make the doughnuts
Preheat an oven to 350 F. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and spices and set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter and sugars and whip on medium for a minute or two, until fluffy. Add in egg and mix again to combine. Add in the sour cream and vanilla and mix again to combine. With the mixer on low, alternate adding the cider and flour mixture, starting with about half the flour mixture, then half the cider, repeating again until everything is in the batter. Mix just to combine. Add the batter to a large piping bag (no tip necessary) or a large zip-loc bag. Snip the end off and fill the prepared doughnut pans about 3/4 full of batter. Bake for about 10-12 minutes, until doughnuts spring back when you touch them and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow to cool for about 5 minutes in the pans then gently flip them over onto a cooling rack to finish cooling completely.
top the doughnuts
Add the melted butter and reduced cider to a wide shallow dish large enough to dip the doughnuts in and stir to combine. In a similar-sized bowl as the butter, combine the sugar and cinnamon. Dip both sides of the doughnuts in the butter then into the sugar mixture, coating all sides. Enjoy!