These Vegan Yeast Donuts are based on an old-fashioned recipe, using yeast. However, these delicious donuts are baked, not fried, and made with some whole wheat pastry flour. The end result is a tender donut recipe with a crispy crust, and either a vanilla or chocolate glaze with all your favorite toppings.
Celebrating National Donut Day
You 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.
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).
The Appeal of Donuts
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.
Vegan Yeast Donut Recipe
You can make this vegan donut recipe by having the following ingredients on-hand:
- plant-based milk
- vegetable oil
- maple syrup
- coconut sugar (or regular granulated sugar works too)
Those are the primary ingredients. I also highly recommend using a donut pan. However, if you don’t have a donut pan, you can roll these into dough balls and place on a greased cookie sheet. Once they’ve risen, just poke a hole in the middle of each, using your thumb. Stretch that hole out a little and return it to the baking sheet and then bake them.
It may seem like a lot of time is involved with this recipe, but most of it is what I refer to as “resting” time. That said, if you’d love to see examples of easier vegan donuts, check out my Vegan Blackberry Donuts. This recipe is so easy and doesn’t require yeast.
Are Vegan Donuts Good for You?
Vegan donuts are an indulgence for sure. So, even thought I wouldn’t call them health food, they can be incorporated in a healthy diet. Absolutely! And the beautiful thing about vegan donuts is that they’re cholesterol free, and because these are baked, they’ don’t have as much oil as most fried donuts. In addition, we’re using coconut sugar in this recipe with is better at reducing glycemic index than some sugars.
- 2 cups plant-based milk
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- ½ cup coconut sugar
- 2 ½ teaspoons active yeast (1 packet)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ¼ cup applesauce
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons plant-based milk * See notes for chocolate glaze
- Combine 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 for 10 – 15 minutes, until it is about 105 F. If you don’t have a thermometer, just dip your finger in. It should be about as warm as your finger.
- Once the milk mixture has reached the right temperature, stir in the yeast and let it sit for 5 – 10 minutes.
- In a large bowl, add all-purpose flour and the 1 teaspoon of salt. Stir until combined. Create a well in the middle and pour in the soy milk/yeast mix. Stir to combine. Cover and set aside so the dough can rise until its about double in size (about an hour).
- After the dough has risen, add the remaining whole wheat flour, applesauce, and vanilla. Mix well and then let the dough sit for about 10 minutes.
- This dough is very sticky. Flour your surface and create 2″ dough balls. Use your thumb to create a hole in the middle, to create a ring. Then place these in a greased donut pan. Once all the compartments in your pans are full, place a light-weight kitchen towel and set aside, until they have risen to double their size.
- Heat your oven to 350F.
- Place donut pans in the oven and bake for 15 – 17 minutes, until golden brown.
- While the donuts are baking, mix your glaze by combining the powdered sugar and milk in a bowl. If you prefer chocolate glaze, add the coconut powder too and stir.
- Once the donuts are done, remove from oven and let them cool enough so you can handle them. Dip each donut into the glaze. Icing the donuts while they’re still warms helps coat each donut evenly and will create a crispy crust on the icing.
- You can add favorite toppings like chopped nuts, sprinkles, coconut and more. Just be sure to add these before the frosting dries.