Potato Donuts

Potato donuts from A Beautiful MessAh, donuts. My favorite food to make and my favorite food to eat, although I think I like making them so much because I know at the end of the process comes the eating. 🙂 Donuts can be a labor of love in that they take some effort to make. But that makes them all the more special. Besides, you wouldn’t want donuts to be too easy to make; that could lead to some serious weight gain (at least it probably would for me).

Potato donuts via A Beautiful MessThese donuts are denser than yeasted donuts, more like a cake donut. They are made with potatoes. We got a little basket of potatoes in our CSA share last week, and I’ve been wanting to try making potato donuts for a while now. So this was the perfect excuse.

Full disclosure: this recipe originally did not work for me AT ALL. The batter was too liquidy so I could not form donuts. I tried simply frying small balls of the batter to be more like a fritter. But the outside began to burn while the insides where still very liquid and uncooked. Yuck. 

I adapted that first attempt quite a bit and finally got a consistency that I was satisfied with. I’m excited to share the final recipe with you in case you’re in need of a crunchy, starchy, and delicious donut recipe. 

Emma Chapman making donutsPotato Donuts, makes sixty 2 1/2″ donuts. You can half this recipe fairly easily if you’d like.
Adapted from A Baker’s Field Guide to Doughnuts by Dede Wilson

4-4 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup cake flour, sifted
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 1/3 cups sugar
4 eggs
2 cups cooked, lightly packed potato
1/4 cup butter, melted and cooled
1/2 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
oil for frying

For the tops:
1 cup powdered sugar (plus more if you want some with just powdered sugar on top)
2-3 teaspoons whole milk
cinnamon sugar (make it as cinnamony as you like!)
finely chopped Heath bar (or Butterfinger bar)

Begin by baking the potatoes. You can do this in the oven by baking at 375°F for 45 minutes to an hour. You’re looking for the insides to be easily mashable. 🙂 Once baked, allow the potatoes to cool enough to handle. Then slice them in half and scoop out the insides. I pressed my potatoes through a potato ricer, but you could also pulse them a few times in a food processor. You just want them to be broken up enough that you can easily incorporate them into a batter.

Potato skinsIn a large bowl, whisk together the flours (start with 4 cups all-purpose flour), baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside. In another large bowl, whisk together the sugar and eggs until well incorporated (the color will become a bit more pale). To the eggs, add the potatoes, cooled (but liquid), butter, milk, and vanilla extract. Stir until just combined. Pour the wet mixture in with the dry mixture, and stir until a very soft dough forms. If the dough still doesn’t hold enough shape to roll out, then add another 1/4 cup flour.

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and roll out until it’s 1/4″ thick. You will likely need to do this in 3-4 batches, unless you have a giant work surface. 🙂 Cut out your donuts. 

In a heavy-duty pot, heat 2 inches of oil to 350°F. Cook the donuts in the oil for 30-40 seconds on each side. Remove to a plate (or cutting board) lined with paper towels to soak up excess grease. 

How to make the best cake donutsNow it’s time to glaze these donuts! Whisk together 1 cup of powdered sugar and 2-3 tablespoons whole milk. You can dip the donuts in just the glaze, or you can top them with cinnamon and sugar or chopped-up candy bars. I also dipped a few in just powdered sugar and that was also very delicious. So, you’ve got options here. 🙂

Potato donuts (click through for recipe) Cake donuts made with potatoThese, like most donuts, are best served on the day they are made. Make some donuts next weekend, guys; you won’t be disappointed. Enjoy! xo. Emma

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions

Potato Donuts

Servings 30

Ingredients

  • 4-4 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup cake flour sifted
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups cooked lightly packed potato
  • 1/4 cup butter melted and cooled
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • oil for frying

Instructions

  1. For the tops:
  2. 1 cup powdered sugar (plus more if you want some with just powdered sugar on top)
  3. 2-3 teaspoons whole milk
  4. cinnamon sugar (make it as cinnamony as you like!)
  5. finely chopped Heath bar (or Butterfinger bar)
  6. Begin by baking the potatoes. You can do this in the oven by baking at 375°F for 45 minutes to an hour. You're looking for the insides to be easily mashable. Once baked, allow the potatoes to cool enough to handle. Then slice them in half and scoop out the insides. I pressed my potatoes through a potato ricer, but you could also pulse them a few times in a food processor. You just want them to be broken up enough that you can easily incorporate them into a batter.
  7. In a large bowl, whisk together the flours (start with 4 cups all-purpose flour), baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside. In another large bowl, whisk together the sugar and eggs until well incorporated (the color will become a bit more pale). To the eggs, add the potatoes, cooled (but liquid), butter, milk, and vanilla extract. Stir until just combined. Pour the wet mixture in with the dry mixture, and stir until a very soft dough forms. If the dough still doesn't hold enough shape to roll out, then add another 1/4 cup flour.
  8. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and roll out until it's 1/4" thick. You will likely need to do this in 3-4 batches, unless you have a giant work surface. Cut out your donuts.
  9. In a heavy-duty pot, heat 2 inches of oil to 350°F. Cook the donuts in the oil for 30-40 seconds on each side. Remove to a plate (or cutting board) lined with paper towels to soak up excess grease.
  10. Now it's time to glaze these donuts! Whisk together 1 cup of powdered sugar and 2-3 tablespoons whole milk. You can dip the donuts in just the glaze, or you can top them with cinnamon and sugar or chopped-up candy bars. I also dipped a few in just powdered sugar and that was also very delicious.

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