Rich gluten free chocolate cake donuts with a thick glaze will satisfy your donut cravings, and they’re ready in minutes. Make any day into a celebration, easily.
Why you need a great gluten free donut recipe
I started baking gluten free donuts when my gluten free son was in grammar school. They constantly bring Dunkin Donuts into school to celebrate absolutely anything (or nothing). I wanted him to have something just like what everyone else was eating.
If you have a kid with dietary restrictions, you do not enjoy the celebration days. Especially when my son was little, and I just didn’t trust anyone to make sure he wasn’t mindlessly eating something that wasn’t safe for him.
…even if you don’t really eat donuts
But even if you’re the one who is gluten free, and you’re long past grammar school birthday parties, you still need a gluten free donut recipe. Even if you never really liked donuts before you went gluten free, you will have that day when you realize you “can’t” have one.
I believe that just knowing you can make a great gluten free donut has power. That’s true whether you even make the donuts or not. Ever.
Baking donuts in a donut pan
I baked these in the oven in a simple nonstick Wilton donut pan. Be sure the donut pan you use has a tall enough center.
If your donut pan has a super short center column (button?), the batter may rise over it and close it up. And what’s a donut without a hole?
They bake in just a few minutes in the oven. You can also make them as miniature donuts that way, too. If you’re trying to mimic Dunkin Donuts, though, go with the full-sized donuts.
Baking donuts in a donut maker
If you happen to own one of the mini electric donut makers, I highly recommend baking these donuts in it. Just heat the machine, and pipe the batter into the wells, filling the lower half of the wells completely.
Close the machine, and let them bake. They’ll be ready in about 3 minutes, but you’ll know it’s time to remove the donuts when they start to smell amazing.
You can’t really beat those little machines for quick and easy. I have the Babycakes Donut Makers you see in the how-to video here, but there are also a bunch of companies that make a version of them. I’m sure they all work similarly.
I’m not proud of it, but I’ve impulse-bought more than one of the Dash brand miniature electric baking appliances. There may or may not be a single-waffle maker in my kitchen (there is 🙈).
If you can bake something miniature, and better yet without turning on the oven, I can’t help myself. They’re adorable, and neater and easier and the whole kitchen is nice and cool.
Ingredients and substitutions
There is dairy in two forms in these donuts: butter, and cream. Each can be replaced without much effect on the recipe.
The butter in the donuts can be replaced with Melt or Miyoko’s Kitchen brand vegan butter. Earth Balance buttery sticks, which are not usually my favorite butter replacement, should work here, too.
In place of the cream, try canned coconut milk. Don’t try using just coconut cream, though, which is too thick and doesn’t have enough moisture. Shake up that can first.
The combination of oil and cocoa powder is what makes these donuts rich and chocolatey. The butter gives them richness. It’s the combination of all 3 ingredients that makes rich donuts without melted chocolate in the batter.
You can use any neutral oil you like. Grapeseed, canola, vegetable, or peanut oil will all work just fine.
There are two eggs in this recipe. You should be able to replace them both with one “chia egg” each.
To make one chia egg, combine 1 tablespoon ground white chia seeds + 1 tablespoon lukewarm water, mixed and allowed to gel. I wouldn’t recommend trying simpler replacements, like applesauce.
According to Signature Brands, Cake Mate and Betty Crocker brand sprinkles and nonpareils are gluten free (at least in the U.S.). I figure if I’m going to give my kids a sugar rush before school, I’m going all the way, but of course the decorative touches are optional.
This recipe is from my second cookbook, Gluten Free on a Shoestring Quick & Easy. under the name “Yeast Free Chocolate Doughnuts.” There are at least eight other recipes for gluten free donuts here on the blog. Some are yeast-raised, others are not. They’re all amazing!