Fresh Amish glazed donuts, right from your own kitchen! Whip up a batch of these hot, soft, sweet yeast-raised donuts for your family to enjoy today.
Everyone loves a fresh glazed donut! In places with many Amish families and communities, the locals know the Amish bakeries are the place to go for the best donuts.
What can you do if you don’t live near one of these wonderful bakeries? You make the Amish glazed donuts yourself! The process of making homemade donuts is an enjoyable activity that results in a delicious and special treat.
One of the great things about making glazed donuts at home is that the ingredients are pantry staples. Here’s what you’ll need for the donuts:
- Whole milk & butter
- Sugar & flour
- Warm water
- Dry active yeast. Read all about baking with yeast here.
- Vegetable oil for frying
The glaze is easy also. It’s simply a mix of powdered sugar, milk and vanilla, plus a touch of corn syrup. The corn syrup adds a touch of shine to the glaze and helps it have a smooth consistency.
How Long Does it Take to Make Homemade Donuts?
- Mix Time. Mixing up the dough will be quick and it can usually be done in well under 15 minutes.
- Rise Time. You’ll need at least 30 minutes, but possibly up to 120 minutes (depending on the temperature of the room), to allow the dough to rise. Then after you cut the donuts, you’ll allow the donuts to rise for another 30 minutes.
- Fry Time. Plan about 20 minutes. Frying the donuts will take a little bit of time because you will fry the donuts in very small batches for a about 2 minutes per batch. The exact time will depend on the size pan you are using. It’s all worth it once you taste the amazing fresh donuts.
Your actual hand-on time in the kitchen between mixing up the dough, cutting out donuts, and frying the donuts? It might only take about an hour of your time. This is a recipe that is extra enjoyable when you’re working with a friend, and it goes even quicker that way!
What are the Steps to Making the Donuts?
Mix the dough.
We find it easiest to mix our dough in a stand mixer. If you don’t have a stand mixer, you can knead by hand. Even easier? If you have a bread machine, put in the ingredients in the order the machine suggests and use the dough setting. Easy peasy!
We prefer to use Red Star Platinum Instant Yeast. It works beautifully every time and there is no need to wait for the yeast to proof. You can use active dry yeast if you’d like. Just read the instructions on the back of the yeast packet you have to see how you should add it to the dough. Pay special attention to whether you need to proof the yeast and what temperature the milk/water should be.
Let the dough rise.
Now that your dough is made, you’ll place it in a greased large bowl and set it aside to rise until doubled. This could take up to 2 hours, but we find ours is usually ready in 45 minutes.
Cut the donuts.
Roll the dough out and cut out the donuts with a donut cutter or one small biscuit cutter and one large (see image below for an example):
Place your donuts on cookie sheets to be ready for frying. Allow them to rest and rise for about 30 minutes. They may not double and that is ok. They’ll rise slightly during frying.
Tips for frying donuts.
Frying your donuts might feel intimidating at first, but you can do this! If you’ve never deep fried before, it’s a really good idea to familiarize yourself with deep frying safety rules before you begin. Here are some helpful tips.
- Fry in a deep fryer or a large pot. If you have a deep fryer at home, use it! The benefits of using a small, at-home deep fryer are that it will be easier to control the temperature of the oil and deep fryers usually come with a basket that is handy for safely lowering the donuts into the oil and lifting them back out. If you do not have a deep fryer, you can use a large, heavy pot or Dutch oven on your stove top. A really good frying thermometer attached to the side of your pot will be essential!
- Watch the temperature! Maintaining the correct frying temperature is one of the most important elements of making homemade donuts. If the oil is too hot, the outside of the donuts will become dark or even burned before the inside of the donuts is cooked, leaving the donuts raw and doughy in the middle. If the oil is too cool, the donuts will end up greasy and tough on the outside. Either way, no good! 350º is perfect.
- Use the right tool. A heat-resistant metal skimmer, strainer, or large slotted spoon is best for gently lowering the donut into the oil. When flipping the donut, use the metal skimmer along with a pair of tongs to maintain full control of the donut while turning to avoid any hot oil splash.
- Drain well. As you lift the donuts out of the oil, be sure to allow all excess oil to drip off of the donut, then place them on a wire cooling rack for a few seconds before dipping in the glaze. The wire rack ensures the donuts don’t hold onto extra oil and end up greasy.
- Be careful! Deep frying requires extreme caution. This is not a job for children and small ones should probably not be in the kitchen while you fry.
Glaze for donuts.
When the dough is almost finished rising for the second time, make the frosting by whisking together powdered sugar, whole milk, corn syrup, and vanilla extract until smooth and creamy. Dip the warm donuts in the glaze, then allow them to drip on the wire rack.
Scroll underneath the post for more answers to your questions.
Amish Glazed Donuts
- 1 cup warm whole milk (about 115º Fahrenheit)
- 3/4 cup warm water (about 115º Fahrenheit)
- 1 packages Red Star Platinum instant yeast (.25 ounces)
- 1 large egg (at room temperature)
- 1/4 cup salted butter (very soft)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (plus additional for kneading)
- vegetable oil for frying
For the glaze:
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon corn syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- Pour the warm milk and water in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast overtop. This is instant yeast so there is no need to let it proof. If you use active dry yeast, allow it to sit for 5 minutes or so until it looks frothy.
- Add the egg, butter, salt and sugar.
- Add in 4 cups (save the other 1/2 cup and add only if you need it) of flour and mix using the beater blade just until the ingredients are barely combined. Allow the mixture to rest for 5 minutes so the flour has time to soak up the liquids.
- Scrape the dough off the beater blade and remove it. Attach the dough hook.
- Beat the dough on medium speed, adding in up to 1/2 cup more flour if needed to form a dough. Knead for 5-7 minutes or until the dough is elastic and smooth. **The dough should be tacky and will still be sticking to the sides of the bowl. That's ok! Don't be tempted to add more flour at this point. We generally add about 4 1/2 cups, but start with 4 cups.
- Spray a large bowl with cooking spray.
- Use a rubber spatula to remove the dough from the mixer bowl and place it in the greased large bowl.
- Cover the bowl with a towel or wax paper.
- Set the bowl in a warm place and allow the dough to rise until double. I like to turn on the oven to the lowest setting for 1-2 minutes. Then turn off the oven and place the dough to rise in there. It normally takes about 30-45 minutes for the dough to rise to double. It could take up to 2 hours.
- Sprinkle a pastry mat lightly with flour. Turn out the dough onto the pastry mat and sprinkle the top of the dough with additional flour.
- Roll the dough to about a 20×12" rectangle. (The size of the rectangle can vary…it does not have to be exact!) The dough should not be rolled too thin…about 1/2" should be good. If you roll it thicker, your donuts will be thicker and take longer to cook in the oil.
- Use a donut cutter to cut donuts. Use the scraps to roll out again to cut more donuts. You'll get about 12-15 donuts with this recipe. You can fry the donut holes or roll them back into the dough. The holes are fun though!
- Place the cut out donuts onto large cookie sheets and set aside to rise for an additional 30 minutes.
- Add vegetable oil to a large pot, Dutch oven, or deep fryer, about 2-inches depth. Heat the oil to 350º Fahrenheit.
- TIP: Use a cooking thermometer to manage the heat of the oil. If the oil is too cool it will not cook the donuts well and donuts will take in a lot of oil, or too hot and the donuts will cook too fast on the outside before the inside. You want it to stay around 350º F.
- Use a metal spatula or frying “spider” to gently lower a donut into the hot oil. Add donuts to the hot oil, being careful not to overcrowd them. We do about 5 donuts at a time. Fry donuts on the first side for about 45 seconds or until golden brown. Then flip and fry on the other side for no longer than 1 minute. Remove from the oil and cool on a wire rack with a baking sheet underneath to catch dripping oil. *If the donuts are really large they may take more time to cook in the oil.*
- Safety Tip: Be extremely cautious when frying! Research deep frying safety tips and be very gentle when adding donuts to the oil and flipping them.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine the powdered sugar, corn syrup, vanilla extract, and ½ cup of whole milk. Set this donut glaze aside.
- Dip the warm donuts into the glaze and return to the cooling rack for the glaze to set.
- These donuts are best served warm while they’re fresh. Store any leftovers in an airtight container.
Do I have to use a stand mixer?
Although it is not required, making homemade donuts is much easier with a stand mixer. The dough will be very dense by the time you add all of the flour and the mixing is really a job for a good stand mixer.
If you do not have a stand mixer, you can mix the dough with a hand mixer in the beginning stages of adding the flour. However, at a certain point you’ll need to switch to mixing by hand because the thick dough will be too much for most hand mixers (believe me…I broke my hand mixer attempting this recipe without my KitchenAid once!).
Do homemade donuts keep well?
The answer is yes and no. Glazed donuts just taste the absolute best when fresh. However, if there are any donuts leftover, you can certainly keep them for later. Store the donuts in an airtight container for up to two days at room temperature.
To reheat donuts: You can reheat the donuts in the microwave one at a time in 10 second increments. Be careful; they do get hot fast!
What do I serve with the glazed donuts?
While a donut by itself is never a bad thing, you’ll probably want to serve them with a little something more. Here are some perfect food and drink ideas to pair with your donuts: