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How much do we love donuts? They’re the perfect complement to a cup of coffee, a cheerful pick-me-up on a bad day and the hit of any breakfast gathering.
They’re a pain to make at home, though. The dough needs to rise before baking, and unless you have your own deep fryer, your kitchen could become an oil-splattered mess.
Thank goodness for air fryers. These trendy countertop appliances function like tiny convection ovens, cooking foods with quickly circulating hot air. They only need a fraction of the oil used in stovetop or oven recipes — and some foods need none at all.
Air fryer devotees have devised all sorts of ways to make their favorite guilty pleasures slightly less guilt-inducing. Now, donuts are getting the air fryer treatment, and the results look delicious.
Food blogger Jill Selkowitz of This Old Gal shared her air fryer recipe for cinnamon-sugar and glazed donuts, and they’re super easy to prepare on a whim.
Instead of making dough from scratch, Selkowitz uses store-bought, canned biscuit dough. She punches out a hole in each round of biscuit dough to make the donut shape. And a bonus — the extra dough makes for great donut holes!
She includes instructions for a simple glaze or cinnamon-sugar topping, but since making these air fryer donuts is so easy, you could go wild topping them instead.
The recipe isn’t oil-free. Selkowitz recommends using a quick swipe of coconut oil on the cooking tray of the air fryer before cooking. She also spritzes a little oil over the food as a final prep step.
Still, this is a lot less oily than deep-frying!
Another blogger, Valentina at Cooking on the Weekends, worked up an oil-free way to make pumpkin spice donut holes.
This air fryer donuts recipe is more labor intensive — Valentina makes her dough from scratch— but if you’re into pumpkin spice anything, it’ll be worth the trouble.
The formed donut holes are placed on parchment paper, or in tiny paper muffin cups. While they bake for 10 minutes in the air fryer, you can whip up a simple glaze to drizzle over the finished donut holes.
Just brew up a pot of joe as an accompaniment and you may have created the perfect morning. All of a sudden, I’m super excited for some weekend treats!