Baked Pumpkin Donuts with Cream Cheese Frosting
Hey friends! I have a new fall recipe for you. Yes, I said fall. These baked pumpkin donuts with cream cheese frosting are going to get us ready for fall! So, yes we should finish eating the season’s heirloom tomatoes, use up the rest of those zucchini that grew wild this year (hello Chocolate zucchini cake!), and savor up the last of those summer peaches. When you are ready, these pumpkin donuts will be here for you. I know you will love them as much as my family did.
Believe it or not, we are getting to that time of the year soon. Leaves will be turning a vibrant yellow, crisp weather, and everything pumpkin is coming! Pumpkin lattes, Pumpkin Pie, and my all-time favorite, Pumpkin donuts. Most of the giant donut chains make a variety of pumpkin-flavored items, but to me, nothing compares to homemade donuts.
My kids are donut fans and frankly just love pumpkin everything. They request pumpkin treats for breakfast always. These Pumpkin Scones With Maple Glaze and Buttermilk Pumpkin Waffles are some of their favorite breakfasts. We are adding these pumpkin donuts to their list of favorites.
Okay, what’s the deal with these donuts? These Baked Pumpkin Donuts with Cream Cheese Frosting and Pecan Nuts are healthy-ish as they are baked and not fried but still as delicious. This recipe for perfectly spiced and moist pumpkin donuts will leave your kitchen smelling like fall. They are soft and cakey, perfectly spiced with cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice, and dipped in a creamy cream cheese frosting with crunchy pecans. Always a crowd-pleaser.
Let’s walk through how to make these donuts. If you are not interested in the step-by-step pictures, feel free to scroll to the end for the recipe.
To start, gather your ingredients and prepare your donut pan with baking spray.
Whisk together all the dry ingredients.
Do the same for the wet ingredients!
Beat until you have a smooth consistency to work with.
Pour in your wet ingredient into your dry ingredients. Slowly incorporate and stir thoroughly in between each pour.
You want to ensure all the lumps are gone.
It’s time to add the batter into the donut pan. This can be done in a few different ways. You can gently spoon the batter into the mold or use a bag to spread the batter into each mold evenly.
If you don’t bake regularly, you might not have a piping bag laying around; that is fine. A hack I have learned over the years is just to take a ziplock bag and after you pour the batter in, simply cut the tip of the corner, and now you have your very own professional piping bag.
Only fill up each mold about halfway to allow space for them to rise. With damp hands, gently press the batter down into a smooth layer to avoid spots burning on the top layer.
Place your pan into the oven and bake for 10-12 minutes. Once the edges and top are lightly browned, your donuts are baked to perfection. Allow donuts to cool in the baking pan for 5 minutes before moving to the cooling rack.
Our beautiful and cakey donuts are done, time to get to the fun part, frosting.
For the cream cheese frosting, combine all the ingredients and mix until blended. Cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract.
Dip each donut into the smooth frosting.
Sprinkle with chopped pecans. Voila! Your Baked Pumpkin Donuts With Cream Cheese Frosting is ready to be devoured. Serve warm and let the smiles happen.
These donuts are not only bursting with pumpkin flavor but will have your house smelling like grandmas after baking a fresh pumpkin pie. As with any type of donut, these are best served fresh and warm. If you do find yourself with leftovers, make sure to store them in the refrigerator, and you can warm them back up by popping them into the microwave for a few seconds.
No matter how you serve them, I am sure they will become a staple in your home during the fall season. I love hearing about you all recreating these recipes, how they went, what you thought, and any variations you tried. Please let me know in the comment section below and use #aclassictwist across social media if you share 🙂
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- ½ cup vegetable oil (like canola oil, melted coconut oil, or melted butter)
- ¾ packed brown sugar
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 cup fresh or canned pumpkin puree
- ⅓ cup milk (I used whole milk)
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the cream cheese frosting:
- 2 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 2 tablespoons butter, softened
- ½ cup powdered sugar, sifted
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons chopped pecan nuts
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Spray a donut pan with non-stick spray and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice and set aside. In another bowl whisk together the oil or melted butter, brown sugar, eggs, pumpkin puree, milk, and vanilla extract.
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until well combined.
- You can either spoon the batter into the donut holes or use a large piping bag or zipped-top bag which I highly recommend. Simply cut the corner off the bottom of the bag and pipe the batter into each donut hole, filling about halfway. With damp hands press them gently to smooth them out, this also prevents burning the tops.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the edges and tops are lightly browned. Cool donuts in the pan for 5 minutes then transfer to a cooling rack. Repeat with the remaining batter.
For the cream cheese frosting:
- In a medium-size bowl, combine the softened butter and cream cheese. Beat until smooth. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Beat until smooth.
- Spread the frosting over the top of the cooled donuts. Sprinkle the chopped pecan nuts over the donuts. Best served fresh.
- Store leftovers in the refrigerator.
- Cover any leftover donuts tightly and store them at room temperature for up to 2 days, or in the refrigerator for up to one week.
- You can freeze the donuts for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and
warm them up a bit in the microwave.
- If you don’t have a donut pan, make this recipe into muffins using a muffin pan. Bake
for 15-18 minutes or until lightly browned.
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