Donut Muffins

I enjoy eating a donut as much as the next person but generally avoid them as they are a dietary indulgence.  Not that I don’t indulge in dessert on a weekly basis, mind you!  But there is something particularly sinful about eating a donut which you know has been deep fried and rolled in sugar, filled with jelly, or slathered with frosting.

So, it was with particular interest that I set my sights on this donut muffin recipe which appeared in an issue of Fine Cooking.  The recipe was from the owner of a bakery in California.  She said that the bakery sold out of these muffins every morning.  Well, that sold me!

It just so happens that I am partial to cake donuts, and this muffin is just like eating a cake donut which has been rolled in cinnamon sugar.  Yum!  The fact that you brush the muffin all over with butter before rolling it in the cinnamon sugar mixture only adds to the yum factor.  The muffins have a really high dome on them and make a really nice presentation.

I made these donut muffins and brought them in to work as it was a co-worker’s last day.  I work with a lot of health conscious women, and I saw two of them cut a muffin in half rather than eat the whole thing.  Then I saw them go back and get the other half!

All things being relative, the fact that this treat is baked rather than deep fried has just got to be less of a sin than an actual donut, right?

Donut Muffins

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Ingredients for the Muffins

  • 12 oz. (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1-3/4 cups sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 6 cups flour
  • 1 tbl. plus 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1-3/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1-2/3 cups milk
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk

Ingredients for Dipping

  • 8 oz. (2 sticks) unsalted butter; more as needed
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 tbl. ground cinnamon


Put a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F.  In a stand mixer or a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar.  Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until just mixed in.  Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg.  Combine the milk and buttermilk.  With a wooden spoon, mix a quarter of the dry ingredients into the butter mixture.  Then mix in a third of the milk mixture.  Continue mixing in the remaining dry and wet ingredients alternately, ending with the dry.  Mix until well combined and smooth, but don’t overmix.  Grease and flour a standard-size muffin tin.  (I used Pam’s baking spray with flour in it.)  Scoop enough batter into each tin so that the top of the batter is even with the rim of the cup, about 1/2 cup.  (A large ice-cream scoop should give you the perfect amount.)  Bake the muffins until firm to the touch, 25 to 30 minutes.

To finish

Melt the butter for the dipping mixture.  Combine the sugar and cinnamon.  When the muffins are just cool enough to handle, remove them from the tin, dip them into or brush them all over with the melted butter, and then roll them in the cinnamon sugar.

Make Ahead Tips

You don’t have to bake all the muffins right away; the batter will keep, covered and chilled, for up to three days in the refrigerator.

Fran’s Notes

My pastry brush hasn’t shown up since we moved, so I had to dip the muffins when I would have preferred to brush the butter on.  As a result, I ended up using more butter than the  two sticks.

Source:   A Fine Cooking recipe

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