Happy Donut Day! Have You Had a Vegan Donut?

Happy Donut Day! Have You Had a Vegan DonutYou know how they say every dog has its day? Well, today is that day for donuts. It’s National Donut Day (or Doughnut Day – however you want to spell it). The first Friday in June has been donned as such since 1938 when donuts were served to soldiers in World War I. Today, many donut shops will even give patrons free donuts in honor of this day. There’s a  rumor that Canadians are jealous of this American holiday. Maybe we should ask Grace from her lovely La Mia Vita Dolce blog if she agrees with this.

Personally, I wish every day was a donut day. Why? Because this is the one food item that can saunter its way around me and I’m not remotely tempted to indulge. Well, I might be slightly tempted (I have a tendency to exaggerate sometimes).

Donuts for me are like coffee: smells intoxicating, but I don’t like to consume it. I wish I had this kind of willpower around more sweets, but I’ll take what I can get. I think my main beef with donuts is that after I eat them I feel rotten. It must be the combination of sugar and oil on an empty stomach that does it. The pleasure is not worth the pain.

But my life may have forever changed because I found a recipe for vegan donuts. Does that statement make you stop and ponder: what is in regular donuts that makes them non-vegan? Don’t worry, regular donuts don’t have pork particles in them, but they do have eggs. Vegans eschew eggs. The problem is eggs are a good binding agent in the doughy part of the donut, so finding a good vegan recipe hasn’t been easy.

However, I recently stumbled upon this delicious donut recipe which is not only vegan, but baked! That means the final product has a greatly reduced fat content (I don’t know about the sugar though; I think that part was left intact). Even with these changes, it’s not a guilt-free indulgence. First of all, they’re a little bit of work, and second I don’t think they can be listed as health-food. But they are definitely a healthier version of a tried-and-true favorite. So, Happy Donut Day to All – vegans included!

Happy Donut Day! Have You Had a Vegan DonutVegan Donuts

(Adapted from a recipe found at Vegan Verve)

2 cups soymilk
¼ cup vegetable oil
¼ cup maple syrup
½ cup sugar
2 ½ teaspoons yeast (1 package)
1 teaspoon vanilla
¼ cup applesauce
1 teaspoon salt
4 ¾ cups Flour, (1 C whole wheat)

Combine soy milk, vegetable oil, maple syrup, and sugar in a small sauce pan. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, remove from heat and let it cool until it is about 110 F. If you don’t have a thermometer, just wash your hands and dip your finger in the liquid. It should be about as warm as your finger. Please, wait about 30 minutes before doing this. I don’t want any second degree burns here! This cooling process can take an hour or more.

Once the soy milk mixture has reached the right temperature, stir in the yeast and let it sit for 5 – 10 minutes.

In a large bowl, add 4 cups of flour (I used 3 cups of white unbleached and 1 cup of whole wheat) and the 1 teaspoon of salt – stir these two together. Next, add the soy milk/yeast mix to the flour. Mix well and let the dough rise until its about double in size (about an hour).

After the dough has risen, add the remaining 1/2 cup of flour, applesauce, and vanilla. Mix well and then let the dough sit for about 10 minutes.

This dough is very sticky, but this will give you the results you want so work with it! I floured my working surface (and my hands) and began creating dough balls – about 2″ seemed to work best. You can make some of them smaller if you’d like to have donut holes. Place these on greased cookie sheets and be sure to allow room for expansion as these little fellas will grow to at least twice their size. Place a light-weight kitchen towel over your cookie sheets and place in your refrigerator overnight.

When you get up the next morning, turn your oven on to its lowest setting. Next, remove the cookie sheets from the fridge, wash your hands and use your finger to poke a hole in the middle of each of the mounds to give them a donut-like center. Next, put the cookie sheets in the oven and then turn the heat off and shut the door.

Give the donuts anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour to finish their growth spurt and then turn the oven up to about 350 and bake for about 10-12 minutes, until the tops are golden brown.

While the donuts are baking, mix your glazes. Once the donuts are out of the oven, let them cool enough so you can handle them, and then dip them directly into the glaze. Icing the donuts while they’re still warms helps the glaze settle into its new home. You can add sprinkles or nuts, whatever your favorite donut topping is today. Most importantly? Enjoy!

Vanilla Glaze

1 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons soy milk

Chocolate Glaze

1 cup powdered sugar
⅓ cup cocoa
3 tablespoons soy milk

Updated by Marly · Permalink

20 Responses to Happy Donut Day! Have You Had a Vegan Donut?

  1. Ryan woke me up this morning to tell me it was Donut Day, but like you, I have never been a big fan of donuts…so instead of donuts, we made pancakes. But after seeing this recipe for vegan donuts, I’m tempted to give them a try! I love the thought of using maple syrup to sweeten the dough, and how can you go wrong that chocolate glaze? Yum!

    • Hi Monet
      I think you’ll like these. They’re not too heavy and the chocolate glaze is my favorite! And the great news is, no stomach ache afterward!

  2. Hey Marly, I love doughnuts! I’ve never had fast food ‘donuts’ though, so I don’t know about the stomach ache of which you speak (smile). And I’m pretty good about sharing sweets, hence a whole sweet of any kind doesn’t usually hit my tum. I’m going to try these soon. I like the way there is no solid fat component like margarine, etc.
    Hey, you don’t drink coffee? Whoaaaa…I can’t even get up without it.

    • I don’t do caffeine very much at all. Sometimes I’ll have some green tea. Occasionally I’ll have a diet soda that has caffeine. I’m weird that way I guess. I think coffee smells so good. I wish I liked it, but I figure it’s one habit I don’t need to pick up. Hey, you need to show me how you do that sharing sweets thing. It’s probably good for the waistline, eh?

  3. Happy Donut Day!! I am definitely going to celebrate this day! I LOVE how this recipe is vegan too!

  4. I’m the same way with coffee: I love going to the coffee shop and basking in the aroma, but I always drink tea. Thanks for sharing this recipe – I’ve been intimidated by donuts for the longest time because I don’t like to make fried foods. But now I can make these baked donuts!

    • They are a bit messy in the making, but the end product is worth it. I had one (ok, actually two) yesterday and they didn’t weigh me down. I loved it! I have to confess to liking the chocolate glaze a little more. I also wish I would have added some sprinkles. Wouldn’t that have been fun? Next time!

  5. I don’t know about the rest of the Canadians but I am extremely jealous. I absolutely love donuts and could eat a whole dozen myself. You would think having a Tim Hortons on every corner that we would also honour this day. I may just have to write them a nice little letter.

    These look absolutely delicious Marly, you are tempting me into leaving my bridal shower baking and making some of these instead!

    • I had a feeling this would be the case! Hey everyone, Grace confirmed the rumor. Just so you know, these donuts are a lot easier to eat by the dozen because they’re not so heavy. Problem is, they’re not calorie free. Some willpower is required!

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  7. Donuts don’t taste the same to me as they did when I was a kid. Back then they were akin to heaven – I can easily resist them now. But I love this baked version of overnight donuts! Terrific for a holiday or special occasion.

    • Yes, it’s true! If you have family staying or a big group of kids, these would be perfect! I actually froze half our batch because, like any pastry, they’re not as good when they sit on the counter for a few days. Hope you enjoy the recipe!

  8. My mom used to make homemade donuts, what a special treat for us kids. But, I like your version and I always have soy milk on hand. I’m pretty good about sharing sweets but sometimes I just want to hoard something I’ve baked or something that has been given to me, it could be something like homemade pickles. Sometimes you just don’t want to share but I think hoarding homemade donuts would probably not be a good idea!

    • Hi Patty – hope you like the recipe. I give you permission not to share these with anyone…unless you want to. In fact, you can even double the glaze recipe and double dip all you want! I would add sprinkles too and then eat them in front of your family and friends. By the way, this is NOT the way to win friends and influence people. And, this is not the way to stay on a diet. But it can lead to a fairly satisfied sweet tooth!

  9. Hi, I would like to try this recipe, but I don’t have maple syrup would agave work

    • Hi Gaby. Absolutely – agave nectar works just fine in this recipe.

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  12. I don’t think you mentioned when to add the salt… It normally goes in w the yeast, but you have it listed so far down that maybe you add it in with the flour?

    • Great catch, Lisa! I fixed the directions to include adding salt to the flour. I haven’t made this recipe in awhile…I think it might be time to try it again!


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