Baked Cider Doughnuts (made with almond flour!)

Doughnuts.  Donuts.  I've marked many stages of life with these magical creations.

They're special to me, more than the requisite birthday cakes, more than morning muffins, more than croissants. Even more than a crois-friggin-sant.  

You see, this is my evolution of the doughnut:

I remember my first house growing up in Los Angeles and my grandparents' weekly visits, oftentimes with doughnuts.  Then I remember moving to our second house, and my dad bringing our favorites home for each of us every Saturday morning.  I'd get the boston cream, my sister a rainbow sprinkled, my mom an old fashioned buttermilk and my dad...his mandatory Canadian maple.  

My parents clearly were on the cutting edge of nutrition.

Then there were Tim Hortons on our trips to Canada to see relatives.  I still make the obligatory visit every time I'm up there.



I remember tapering off fried dough in my teenage years, when awkwardness was in full swing.  Because lack of such things would help, right?

Oh but then came Krispy Kreme.  It made its presence glazingly and blissfully known and the inner fat kid in me remembers that first bite of a fresh KK the way a shark remembers blood.  I don't care what people say, that was dopamine at its finest...  

hen, I moved to Manhattan in the fall of 2005 and discovered the Cider Doughnut, something relatively unknown to Angelenos.  It was a whole new degree of foodie fritter heaven, and the epitome of a chilly day's coffee treat.


rarely indulge the way I used to but I'll continue to try new-to-me places as they pop up: Chicago's Glazed and Confused, Bob's Coffee and Donuts in Los Angeles and I really want to try Portland's Voodoo Donuts.

But until the next special occasion, I get my fix with he baked version...and often with almond flour.  The cuteness factor a pan brings to what are essentially almond cakes overrides any fakeness factor almond cakes bring to the pan.  And I can save the real-deals for fun splurge food adventures.

Wow, I'm making healthy moderation decisions and completed taxes today?  Two thumbs up for grabbing adulthood by its crappy cajones.

INGREDIENTS: (makes 18-20 minis)

  • 1½ cups (195 grams) almond flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill)
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons apple butter* (applesauce can be substituted)
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider

-Preheat the oven to 350˚ F.  Grease your mini doughnut pan.
-In a medium bowl, combine the almond flour, salt, baking soda, nutmeg and cinnamon.
-In a separate small bowl, whisk together the eggs, apple butter, honey, vanilla extract and apple cider.

-Add the wet ingredients to the dry and whisk until well combined.
-Pour batter into into greased doughnut molds and bake 6-8 minutes or until bottoms are golden brown.  They bake quickly.  If you’re using larger molds, add 3-5 minutes.

-Allow doughnuts to cool slightly and then de-mold.  Flip them over and serve golden side up.  Dust with cinnamon if desired.

*Apple butter is basically condensed applesauce that can be made or found at specialty stores or farmers’ markets.  Applesauce can be substituted- it shouldn’t make a huge difference since it’s such a small amount.