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Baked Doughnuts without using doughnut pan

This soft and chewy baked doughnuts use yeast to rise and are baked without using doughnut pan. A healthier version than the deep fried doughnuts that you will surely love.This soft and chewy baked doughnuts use yeast to rise and are baked without using doughnut pan. A healthier version than the deep fried doughnuts that you will surely love. |


Who doesn’t like doughnuts? I believe everyone love them. In the Philippines there is a constant craze for doughnuts and I have seen people queue up in really long lines to buy boxes of them. But here in Germany, or at least in the area where we live, you are lucky if you happen to chance upon some in the groceries or bakeries. They have their own version of it though, the “Berliner”, only difference is they do not have holes. They are also deep-fried and usually filled inside with jam or marmalade and covered with powdered sugar. 

Late last year, I was really missing and craving for doughnuts but I knew I have to make them myself. So I searched the internet for recipes looking for the best (in my humble opinion) there is. But then I came across one that says baked doughnuts. Imagine that! So I do not have to fry them? That would be great, right? Healthier or at least less fat and not to mention greasy or oily. But as I go on reading through the recipe, I learned that it requires a doughnut pan which, of course, I do not have (yet), that was disappointing, right!. But now I am more determined and..Alas!..with some hard work and perseverance I finally found a recipe for baked doughnuts without using doughnut pan, this is what I found when I refined my search to ‘rolled and baked’ doughnuts, a recipe from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe.

This soft and chewy baked doughnuts use yeast to rise and are baked without using doughnut pan. A healthier version than the deep fried doughnuts that you will surely love. |



I already made doughnuts with her recipe several times and they really taste so good. I usually just make the half by dividing most of the ingredients into two. Later on as I got braver, I tried adding a bit of this and that. I also like my doughnuts to have chocolate frosting and other toppings. Original recipe from Mel, uses butter, sugar and cinnamon as topping, which is more simple to do but equally good and my husband is crazy about them.


I have updated the recipe and change the method a bit as some people are having difficulty with getting the dough to rise. I also learned that sometimes the dough would rise faster while at other times it takes longer, but it does pay to be patient. It may take another hour or so but just wait that the dough has double its size on both rising time. Unless of course the yeast used no longer works. Another reason that the dough will not rise well is too less kneading. This soft and chewy baked doughnuts use yeast to rise and are baked without using doughnut pan. A healthier version than the deep fried doughnuts that you will surely love. |

3.8 from 8 reviews
Baked Doughnuts without using doughnut pan
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
  • ½ cup + 2 Tbsp warm milk (95°-110°F/35°-43°C)
  • ½ Tbsp active dry yeast/ instant yeast
  • 1 Tbsp butter, melted at room temperature
  • ⅓ cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2½ cup flour
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract -optional
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder -optional
  • pinch of nutmeg -optional
  • 100 g chocolate (at least 40% cacao), cut into pieces
  • 50 g all-purpose or heavy cream
  • 100g white chocolate
  • 50 g all-purpose or heavy cream
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 2 Tbsp powdered milk (or coffee creamer)
  1. In a large bowl (or that of an electric mixer if using one), combine warm milk, sugar, and yeast. Stir until well blended. This is to proof the yeast. Let it sit for some minutes until foam forms on the surface, then you know that your yeast is activated.
  2. Add the butter, egg and flour and mix using a wooden spoon (or beat with the dough hook attachment) for 2 minutes in medium speed. Add the rest of ingredients and mix for another 1-2 minutes.
  3. Dump dough on the counter and knead for about 3-5 minutes, adding flour or milk if needed. Do not overflour. If still too sticky, just go on kneading without adding any more flour and it will become less sticky eventually. It should be soft, smooth and only slightly sticky.
  4. Form into a ball and place in a greased bowl and cover with cloth or towel and let rise for an hour or until it has doubled its size.
  5. Punch down the dough and roll it out on a floured counter up to about half an inch thick. Cut out circles using a doughnut or round cookie cutter. Transfer the cut doughnuts into the baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Cover the tray and let them rise the second time for about 45 minutes. You can cut smaller circles from the leftover dough and bake them with the holes as is or roll them all together one more time to make more doughnuts.
  6. Bake the doughnuts at 375°F/180°C for 8-10 minutes. The bottom should only be slightly browned while top is still pale. This makes it chewier.
  7. While doughnuts are baking, prepare the dip frosting. Combine the chocolate and cream in a small bowl. Heat in the microwave for 10 seconds and then stir until the chocolate melts completely. Heat for another 5-10 seconds if not warm enough but not more. Follow same for white chocolate, but only add the powdered sugar and milk after melting the white chocolate in the cream.
  8. Once the doughnuts and dips have cooled down to room temperature, dip the top half of the doughnut in the frosting then put them back in a tray as they might drip a bit. Design or top with whatever or however you fancy but be quick before the frosting starts to set.
Know your yeast. Some yeast needs to be proofed, meaning they should be mixed with the warm liquid and foam before using. Mine needs only to be added directly to the flour. To be sure proof your yeast before starting.
If you do not have a doughnut or round cookie cutter, just use a drinking glass or any round object that is at least 1 inch high. Be resourceful and creative.
For the Sugar-Cinnamon Topping, you will need:

1/4 cup butter, melted

3/4 cup granulated sugar mixed with 1/2 Tbsp Cinnamon

Once the doughnuts are cool enough to handle, dip them in the melted butter and then toss them in the sugar-cinnamon mix. Best served while warm.


This soft and chewy baked doughnuts use yeast to rise and are baked without using doughnut pan. A healthier version than the deep fried doughnuts that you will surely love. |

baked donuts are also great holiday giveaway to friends..



Bebs here! I love to cook and try new things and DIY projects! And although I think of myself as a homebody, I like seeing other places from time to time.
If you are looking for a recipe and it ain't here, make a request and I will try my best to make it for you!

This Post Has 40 Comments
  1. Thank you so much for the great recipe!
    I am trying to perfect the rising parts. I let my yeast bubble and it took a couple of hours or more for the dough to rise.
    After I cut them I think I’ll try proofing them in a warm oven because they always stay the same after cutting and turn out hard and small.

    1. Hi Amanda, you might also want to proof your yeast before using it if they are still good.
      This also sometimes happens to my dough when I use too warm water…it kills the yeast I think ?

  2. My dough did not rise either time, and it taste more like a soft pretzel than a doughnut and I followed the directions. It also has the density of a bagel, so I don’t know what happened, lol.

  3. Awesome recipe!

    Mine rose just fine in the oven after slightly warming the oven on 50 C for a few minutes then turning it off. The second rising made them huge! Taste as good as baked donuts can get. Love it, thanks!

  4. Hey I just wanted to say that I doubled the recipe but used fresh compressed yeast because I didn’t have dry yeast, I used like 7 grams and they rised wonderfully! I also mixed a few of chocolate chips and confetti into some of the dough. Ah, and I activated it the same way you did here. Also thank you for the recipe! <3

    1. Yes, I know some are having problem making their dough rise, although I never had this problem. I now adjusted the recipe and added another teaspoon of yeast. Let the dough rise somewhere warm like preheating your oven at the lowest temp. Then turn it off and place your bowl of dough covered in damp towel inside the warm oven…I do this all the time too..

    1. Hi Maisie, as others are also having problem with their dough not rising, I doubled the quantity of the yeast. As I told others, make sure it is also warm enough for your dough to rise.

  5. I tried this recipe today and it look really good it just doesn’t taste like donuts, it’s more like bread.?The dough raised very well and I followed th recipe step by step, I just don’t know what happened.
    My 7 years old brother liked it, but he eats every thing anyway, I prefer the fried ones.

    1. Hi Dana. I am pretty sure that the fried ones taste better, doughnut-wise! I also love them!!! 🙂 This recipe is for those who wants to have doughnuts less the oil you get from frying them or those who doesn’t have doughnut pans to bake them with. They do taste better when covered with choco or white-choco ganache and sprinkled with nuts and other stuff. I do not know why other people can easily get them to rise while others seems to have difficulty. Mine always rise very well specially after the second time, it could be the yeast (is it fast rising or maybe needs time to rise) or the temperature.

  6. i echo the last review. My dough didn’t rise either and I think more specific ingredients while making the dough would have been helpful for those of us who don’t use yeast that often.

    1. Hi Robin, so sorry that your dough didn’t rise. It could be attributed to the yeast not activating for several reasons like, milk being too warm or not warn enough or too much flour. I know that too much salt can kill the yeast and apparently so does cinnamon, although, I never had the problem before. Here is an article I found that gives some pointer about working with yeast and fixing the dough:

      Another thing I can think of is, perhaps you didn’t knead the dough enough. Usually the longer I knead (without adding any more flour) the dough the less sticky it becomes. The recipe calls for a sticky dough, but too sticky and it will not rise as well or at all.

      Thanks for your comment and will take your advice and add some more notes on this post. Hope you do get them to rise on your next rise.

  7. I don’t know what happened. I am an experienced cook and baker, however after trying this recipe twice, following the directions exactly both times I had produced hockey pucks. Very heavy, very dry very not good. Any idea what I could have done wrong.
    I tested my yeast and it was not dead. I really wanted a recipe for doughnuts that you don’t have to fry or have a doughnut pan for cooking. Guess I’ll have to buy a doughnut pan and try another recipe.

    1. That is weird, never had this problem whenever I make these doughnuts before. What kind of flour do you use? I just use AP(All-purpose) type 405. Did you let it rise 2 times? Or it could be that you did not allow them to rise enough. If your kitchen is cold, it might take longer for them to rise, or you can try: warming your oven a bit but not too hot, about 50°C, for 2 minutes then turn it off put the bowl of dough covered in kitchen towel in your warm oven and leave it to rise. Repeat for the second rising. It could also be the setting of your oven. Are you using fan-forced oven? If so, try dropping the temperature by 20°C. Hope one of these tips help. Let me know how it goes and good luck! 🙂

  8. Hello! I found this via Pinterest 🙂 Do you know how long these would last for? And they wouldn’t have to be refrigerated, correct? I’m wondering because my boyfriend LOVES donuts and I thought maybe I could send him a few in the mail (he lives a few states away during the school year). Thank you!

    1. Hi Abby, quite frankly I haven’t had the chance to test how long they would last, usually they are all eaten up a few hours after I make them. But there was a time we had them for 2 days sitting on the counter only covered with a food cover and still tasted good. Maybe they would last for another few days but you should wrap them to avoid drying out. Goodluck and I hope your boyfriend gets to enjoy these donuts like my husband does. Keep me posted of how it goes.

    1. Hi Pravena, we had our donuts sit on the counter for 2 days and they were still great, another day won’t hurt I think, put them in a paper or plastic bag to keep them from drying out. . A week if refrigerated, I would say.

  9. Hi there!

    I have a couple of questions – is the milk in the recipe whole, skim, 2%, or 1%?

    Also, is the butter salted or unsalted?

    Thank you!

    1. Hi Kari, I usually just use fresh whole milk (3.5%) because that is what’s in our fridge ;-)( hubby does not like to drink anything else) but I think other milk should also be fine. As for the butter, I use unsalted one. But if you want to use salted butter then just omit the salt from the recipe.
      Thanks for dropping by and I hope all goes well!

  10. I was worried the yeast wouldn’t be activated yet by mixing it like that so I premixed it with milk and some sugar… It seems like my dough hasn’t risen in nan hour so I’ll try your way of mixing it next 😉

    1. Hi Elvie, there are different kind of yeast that requires different method to activate them..I used the instant active yeast that can be directly added to flour. What kind of yeast did you used? Also everytime I make these doughnuts, the dough does not rise so much on the first rising unlike that of bread for example, I think because of its consistency (softer and bit stickier) but does better on the second rising when they are already cut into shape. Consider also the temperature, when it is too cold in my kitchen I place the dought, covered in towel, in the oven and turn it on at 100°C for 3 minutes and off again. Hope these tips help you next time!

      1. They actually came out amazing and indeed rised better on the second proofing! Thanks a lot, hit on fathers day 🙂

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