Cider Doughnuts

After a filling Hannukah meal, no matter how much I've eaten, I always want some dessert at the end. Sadly, I never took to sufganyot, the Sephardic jelly-filled doughnuts traditionally served during the holiday, but I've always, always had a soft spot for homemade doughnuts, especially the apple cider kind.

These are a perfect ending to a late fall celebratory meal. Served warm, the cake donuts are delightfully festive, softly scented with reduced apple cider and dusted with sparkling cinnamon sugar. And if you feel like a whole doughnut will put you over the edge, there's always a doughnut hole waiting.

About the author: Olga Massov writes a popular blog Sassy Radish where she shares food stories and spruced-up comfort foods. Her Russian heritage makes sure she always has room for herring.

Cider Doughnuts

About This Recipe

Active time:1 hour
Total time:1 hour, 30 minutes
Special equipment:candy thermometer, deep pot


  • 1 cup apple cider
  • 3 1/2 cups flour, plus additional for the work surface
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • Shortening or vegetable oil for frying
  • 1 cup sugar mixed with 2 tsp cinnamon in a wide dish


  1. 1

    In saucepan over medium heat, gently reduce apple cider to about 1/4 cup by simmering for 20-30 minutes. Set aside to cool. In large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg. Set aside.

  2. 2

    Add butter and sugar to stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment. Cream on medium speed until the mixture is smooth and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add eggs, 1 at a time, continuing to mix until eggs are completely incorporated. Reduce speed to low and gradually drizzle in reduced apple cider and buttermilk, mixing just until combined, about 1 minute. Add flour mixture and continue to mix until the dough comes together. Do not overmix.

  3. 3

    Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper and sprinkle generously with flour. Turn dough onto one sheet and sprinkle the top with flour. Flatten dough to even 1/2-inch thickness with hands or rolling pin, sprinkling with flour as necessary.

  4. 4

    Transfer dough to the freezer until slightly hardened, about 20 minutes. Using 3-inch doughnut cutter, cut out doughnut shapes and donut holes. Place cut doughnuts and doughnut holes onto second sheet pan. Refrigerate doughnuts for 20 to 30 minutes. (You can re-roll scraps of dough, refrigerate them briefly and cut additional doughnuts from dough.)

  5. 5

    Add enough oil or shortening to Dutch oven or wok to measure depth of about 3 inches. Attach candy thermometer to side of the pan and heat over medium heat until oil reaches 350 degrees. Line large plate with several layers of paper towels.

  6. 6

    Carefully add doughnuts to oil a few at a time, being careful not to crowd pan. Fry until golden brown, about 60 seconds. Turn doughnuts over and fry until second side is golden, 30 to 60 seconds longer.

  7. 7

    Drain fried donuts on paper towels. Dip top of the warm doughnuts in cinnamon sugar and serve immediately.


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