Basic Doughnut Dough

Buttery, fluffy, soft, and delicious. My very favorite doughnut recipe that creates puffy and sweet doughnuts that become the perfect blank canvas to any creative fillings that catch your tastebuds.

  • 1 cup warm whole milk
  • 1/4 cup + 2 TBSP granulated sugar (I like my dough on the sweet side so I use all of this, but you may omit the 1/4 cup of sugar and only use the 2 TBSP to bloom the yeast)
  • 2 1/2 tsp yeast
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 5 TBSP softened unsalted butter
  • 48 oz. canola oil or any neutral tasting oil (for frying)
  1. Add 2 TBSP sugar and yeast to warm milk. Let bloom for 10 minutes until mixture becomes foamy.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer with the dough hook attached, add flour, salt, remaining sugar, salt, and yeast mixture.
  3. Mix for 5 minutes on medium speed until combined. Add eggs.
  4. When the dough begins to come together (pulling away from the edge of the bowl) add butter and mix for 5 minutes on high speed.
  5. Turn off the mixer and scrape dough on to a floured surface.
  6. Knead dough by hand for 5-6 minutes, adding enough flour so the dough doesn’t stick to the surface. Dough will be slightly sticky, but shouldn’t coat your hands. Form into a ball and place in a large oiled bowl. Allow to rise for 1-2 hours, until doubled in size.
  7. Once dough has risen, place onto a floured surface and use a knife or bench scraper to cut the dough into 24 equal pieces. NOTE: You may use a scale for this to keep things consistent.
  8. Cut parchment (not wax) paper into 24 2” x 2” squares. Line these squares onto sheet pans, ensuring they do not touch.
  9. Take one portion of dough and use the palm of your hand to roll the ball in small, tight circles. This will cause the dough to form into a tight, golf-ball sized portion. Place dough ball on a square of parchment paper.
  10. Repeat with remaining dough.
  11. Cover with a clean towel and let portioned dough rise for 1 hour.
  12. Heat 48 oz. of canola oil in a large, deep pot on medium-high heat. Use a thermometer to ensure oil is at 350F. The temperature of the oil is key — too cold, the doughnuts will be greasy. Too hot, the doughnuts won’t cook properly.
  13. Place 2-3 portioned balls of dough (with the parchment) into the hot oil. After a few seconds, the parchment will begin to float, and you may pick them out of the oil using a pair of tongs.
  14. Cook doughnuts for 3 minutes on each side. Doughnuts will sound hollow when tapped once they are properly cooked.
  15. Remove from oil and place on a wire rack that is lined with paper towels. Allow doughnuts to rest for 5 minutes so excess oil may drip off.
  16. Now the real fun begins! You may dust these in powdered sugar or roll them in cinnamon sugar to eat them plain. Or, you may use a knife to create a pocket in each dough ball and fill it with your favorite jam, Nutella, dulce de leche, hot fudge…the options are endless!

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