Concentrated apple cider flavors these doughnuts from the dough to the glaze. Inside they're cakey and delicate and outside a bit crisp, especially while still warm. The recipe comes from Piper Davis, co-owner and cuisine director at Grand Central Bakery in Portland and Seattle. Davis's friend Julie Richardson, owner of the city's Baker & Spice bakery, shared her expertise and enthusiasm as a starting point for the recipe. You'll need a 2 3/4-in. doughnut cutter or 2 biscuit cutters (a 3 3/4-in. one for the doughnuts plus a 1/2-in. one for the holes).

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Credit: Thomas J. Story

Recipe Summary

1 hr
3 hrs
2 hrs
Makes about 18 doughnuts and holes (serving size: 1 doughnut and 1 hole)


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Make doughnuts: In a medium bowl, whisk together 3 3/4 cups flour, the baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. In a small bowl, combine buttermilk, cider reduction, and vanilla. Using a mixer, beat granulated sugar and butter in a large bowl on medium-high speed until fluffy and very light in color, 4 to 6 minutes. "You're beating air into the butter and sugar so you have a light, delicate texture," says Davis. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping bowl occasionally.

  • On low speed, beat in dry ingredients in 3 additions, alternating with buttermilk mixture and beating just until combined.

  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and dust generously with flour. Put dough on sheet and sprinkle generously with flour. Pat or roll dough into a slab about 1/2 in. thick. Cover with plastic wrap and chill until center feels firm enough to cut, about 1 hour.

  • Slip dough from parchment onto a flour-dusted work surface. Line baking sheet with a fresh piece of parchment. Cut doughnuts and holes, dipping a 2 3/4-in. doughnut cutter into flour each time and "releasing them with a strong flick of your wrist." Set on baking sheet. Gather scraps and reroll.

  • Heat 1 1/2 in. oil in a dutch oven to between 350° and 360° on a deep-fry thermometer. Meanwhile, set 2 cooling racks over empty baking sheets; set them near stove. Make glaze: In a medium bowl, whisk together cider reduction, powdered sugar, and vanilla.

  • Fry 2 or 3 doughnuts and holes at a time until a rich toasty brown, turning once with a slotted spatula or spoon, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes per side. Adjust heat as needed; "you want a lively bubble." Test the first doughnut and make sure it's cooked through (it will be light colored inside but shouldn't look wet).

  • Transfer doughnuts to racks over baking sheets. Let cool just until comfortably warm; at this temperature, rather than cool, "they suck up the glaze." Dip all over in glaze and set on racks.


Grand Central Bakery, Portland and Seattle

Nutrition Facts

361 calories; calories from fat 34%; protein 3.9g; fat 14g; saturated fat 4g; carbohydrates 55g; fiber 0.9g; sodium 277mg; cholesterol 32mg.