It’s the last day of the month and I’m also pulling the birthday card, but I had to squeeze in one more pumpkin spice recipe. Since I’m not much of a birthday cake kind of gal, I opted for doughnuts instead! These aren’t your sugar filled fried doughnuts from the convenient store, but a lightened up version using way less sugar, baked instead of fried, and applesauce in lieu of oil.
The end result is more of a muffin-like consistency of perfectly pumpkin spiced fluffy rings that make for an easy on-the-go breakfast. As an added bonus, the entire house is filled with a delicious fall aroma of bread, pumpkin, and spices that no candle or air freshener could ever mimic.
(makes 24 doughnuts)
2 cups all purpose flour or white whole wheat flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp grated nutmeg
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1 (15oz) can of pumpkin puree
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/4 cup (half a stick) of unsalted butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 large eggs
Cream Cheese Glaze:
4oz light cream cheese, softened
6 Tbs powdered sugar
1 to 2 tsp milk (any kind)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and butter two 6-cavity doughnut pans. This recipe makes 24 doughnuts so you’ll have to do this twice.
In a medium sized bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, and spices. In a separate large bowl using an electric mixer, combine pumpkin puree, sugar, applesauce, melted butter, and vanilla extract. Beat in eggs one at a time until completely combined. Slowly add in flour mixture until just mixed.
You can spoon batter into the prepared doughnut pans, which in my experience gets a little messy, or you can use my trick. Add batter into an icing bag and squeeze into each doughnut cavity. Fill so that each one is about 3/4 of the way full. Smooth batter down if needed. Place in the oven to bake for 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Invert doughnuts onto a cooling rack, butter the pans once they’ve cooled, and repeat with remaining batter.
While you’re waiting on your doughnuts to bake you can prepare the cream cheese glaze. In a small bowl, whisk together cream cheese, 2 tablespoons of powdered sugar, and 1 teaspoon of milk. Continue to whisk in remaining powdered sugar one tablespoon at a time, and add another teaspoon of milk if glaze is too thick for you. Whisk until completely smooth.
Use a rubber spatula or the back of a spoon to glaze doughnuts once they’ve cooled. Add sprinkles or a bit of pumpkin pie spice if you like and serve right away. Doughnuts can also be made the night before and stored in an airtight container at room temperature. Just glaze them right before serving.