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Classic Yeast Doughnut Recipe

Glazed and sugared doughnuts on a baking sheet with hot coffee.

Light, chewy, fried yeasted doughnuts coated in chocolate glaze, powdered sugar, and cinnamon sugar!

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 (1/4-oz) package active dry yeast (2 1/2 teaspoons)
  • 2 tablespoons warm water (105–115°F)
  • 3 1/4 cups (410 grams) all-purpose flour plus additional for sprinkling and rolling out dough
  • 1 cup whole milk at room temperature
  • 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • About 10 cups vegetable oil for deep frying

For the Glaze:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 23 tablespoons whole milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the Cinnamon Sugar:

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

For the Powdered Sugar Coating:

  • Just a cup of powdered sugar

Instructions

  1. Stir together yeast and warm water in a small bowl until yeast is dissolved. Let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. (If yeast doesn’t foam, discard and start over with new yeast.)
  2. Mix together flour, milk, butter, yolks, sugar, salt, cinnamon, and yeast mixture in mixer at low speed until a soft dough forms. Increase speed to medium-high and beat 3-5 minutes more.
  3. Scrape dough down side of bowl (all around) into center, then sprinkle lightly with flour (to keep a crust from forming). Cover bowl with a clean kitchen towel (not terry cloth) and let dough rise in a draft-free place at warm room temperature until doubled in bulk, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. (Alternatively, let dough rise in bowl in refrigerator 8 to 12 hours.)
  4. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and roll out with a lightly floured rolling pin into a 12-inch round (3/4 inch thick). Cut out as many rounds as possible with 3-inch cutter, then cut a hole in center of each round with 1-inch cutter and transfer doughnuts to a lightly floured large baking sheet.  If doughnuts were rested in the fridge overnight, let the chilled dough come to a cool room temperature on the counter for 45 minutes before rolling and cutting. Cover doughnuts with a clean kitchen towel and let rise in a draft-free place at warm room temperature until slightly puffed, about 30 minutes (45 minutes if dough was cold when cutting out doughnuts). Do not reroll scraps.
  5. Heat 2 1/2 inches oil in a deep 4-quart heavy pot until it registers 360°F on thermometer. Fry doughnuts, 2 at a time, turning occasionally with a wire or mesh skimmer or a slotted spoon, until puffed and golden brown, about 2 minutes per batch. Transfer to paper towels to drain. (Return oil to 360°F between batches.)
  6. I also fried the doughnut holes for about 1 minute and them tossed them in powdered sugar and cinnamon sugar straight out of the hot grease.
  7. To make the chocolate glaze, whisk together all of the ingredients in a medium bowl until smooth and glossy.  To make the cinnamon sugar, toss the two together.  Powdered sugar speaks for itself.  Cinnamon sugar and powdered sugar doughnuts are best topped when the doughnuts are fresh from the fryer and still have a thin layer of grease on them.
  8. Doughnuts are best enjoyed the day they’re fried.