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This soft, pillowy baked chocolate donuts recipe is easy to make and easier to eat. Roll them in powdered sugar for a classic flavor and look, or whip up a quick chocolate glaze for a decadent treat.
Don’t get me wrong, I love classic, deep fried doughnut shop goodness. But as a busy mom, who doesn’t necessarily love using tons of oil for deep frying all the time, a baked donut is key.
Staying true to my tendency to decorate as little as possible, I opt for a quick dip in powdered sugar. It balances that chocolaty flavor, and reminds the family of those boxed donuts you get from the grocery store – without a single preservative or having to get in the car. Yay for cooking from scratch!
Ingredients and Substitutions
It doesn’t take anything complicated to make chocolate baked donuts with powdered sugar. It’s a classic quick bread combination of two bowls, one for dry, one for wet. Here’s what you’ll need to get started.
- All-purpose flour – These are already light enough without cake flour, so I wouldn’t suggest swapping that. You could opt for half wheat flour or bread flour for more of a chew.
- Cocoa powder – You can use either a natural or dutch processed cocoa, just choose one with good flavor.
- Salt – Especially in chocolate baked goods, don’t skip the salt. A bit of fine grain salt enhances the flavors of cocoa.
- Baking powder & soda – The combination of both chemical leaveners gives it that fluffy quality during their quick bake.
- Oil – Liquid fat like vegetable, canola, or grapeseed oil keep them light.
- White sugar – I used granulated sugar for this, feel free to swap in cane sugar.
- Brown sugar – You can use turbinado sugar or coconut sugar if you’d like.
- Yogurt – This will activate the baking soda, and provide essential moisture without weighing them down. Use a plain or vanilla greek yogurt, though be careful, very sweet varieties will affect the sweetness of the donut.
- Egg – Just one egg will do all the binding work we need.
- Powdered sugar – My go to choice for finishing these off.
Though it’s not an ingredient, it is fairly essential to making baked donuts. You can get a donut pan pretty easily and it makes everything easier. Or, if you’re determined, you can form molds on your own…but I’ve never had the patience for that.
Tips & Instructions
I promise making these is pretty easy, but to get that perfect chocolate donut, I do have a few quick tips for getting them baked and cooling.
- Don’t overmix – One of the reasons I use two bowls is because beating all the wet together prevents you from needing to mix the batter too much. To keep them light, when you add the wet to the dry, just gently fold until it’s all uniformly combined.
- Grease the pan! – I don’t care if it’s non-stick. I promise you want to spray cooking spray or grease and flour the pan before baking to get them out cleanly.
- Use a piping bag – If you’d rather just spoon the batter into the pan, you can. But it’s a heck of a lot cleaner and easier to just use a piping bag with no tip to add the perfect amount.
- One small circle in each cup is all you need – The batter expands considerably. To avoid donuts that spill over the edges (aka really uneven wonky donuts) only fill the pan ⅓ of the way.
- Turn out onto a cooling rack immediately – With your oven mitts on and hot pan in hand, immediately flip the donuts onto a cooling rack to cool. Leaving them in will make them soggy.
- Let them cool completely before decorating or dipping in sugar (unless you want a runny, gooey mess).
If you’re not into powdered sugar, which I highly recommend, you can definitely use a chocolate glaze. I used one for making my spider donuts for Halloween. It’s a simple combination of chocolate, cream, butter, and sugar cooked until liquid chocolate.
All you’ll need to do is pour it over cooled donuts to create a double chocolate treat.
When it comes to freshly baked donuts, they unfortunately just don’t keep very long (just like traditional doughnuts, get them fresh!). The best day to eat them is the day they’re baked.
Thankfully, since they only take 20 minutes or so, you can easily enjoy them for breakfast or dessert. If you must store them, keep them in a single layer and very lightly wrapped. They’re going to get a little heavier, so eat by the next day.
But you know I’m all about reducing food waste. So if you’re a small family like ours and aren’t going to eat the full batch, then I highly recommend freezing half before they are rolled in sugar.
Just lay them on a freezer safe baking sheet in a single layer and let them freeze. Then transfer to a storage container. When you get the craving, pull out however many you want at room temperature, uncovered. Then you can roll it in powdered sugar.
I hope you love these chocolate baked donuts with powdered sugar (or glaze). You know I’m a fan of chocolate around here (just check out my ultimate guide on cooking with chocolate for proof), so check out the other tasty recipes I have too. Happy Eating!
- Chocolate Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream
- Chocolate Shortbread Cookies
- Homemade Chocolate Syrup
- Hot Fudge Sauce
- Olive Oil Brownies
- Chocolate Filled Bread
- 36+ Chocolate Desserts
- 15+ Chocolate and Vanilla Desserts
- Chocolate Custard Tart
- Chocolate Covered Bacon
Baked Chocolate Donuts Recipe
- Donut pan ideally a 12 donut or 2 6 donut pans
- 100 grams all-purpose flour 3/4 cup
- 47 grams cocoa powder 1/2 cup
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 large egg
- 84 mililiters vegetable oil 3 ounces
- 160 grams plain greek yogurt 2/3 cup
- 115 grams white sugar 1/2 cup
- 56 grams brown sugar 1/4 cup, packed
- 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- Preheat your oven to 350°F and spray your donut pan(s) with non-stick cooking spray or lightly grease.
- Whisk together the sugars and wet ingredients.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients.
- Fold the dry ingredients into the wet mixture until smooth.
- Fill a piping bag with no tip, or use a small spoon to fill each donut cup 1/3 of the way.
- Bake for 9 minutes or until fluffy and springy.
- Remove immediately and carefully flip the pan onto a cooling rack. If needed re-grease your pan and bake remaining batter.
- Once cool, toss each donut into powdered sugar until well coated.
Nutrition information and cooking times are provided as a best estimate. Values may vary based upon ingredients and equipment.