Is it just me or did Mardi Gras sneak up out of nowhere? I think because it was so much later last year I was thinking I had more time to prepare a couple of recipes for you. Mardi Gras isn’t something I go all out for, I probably would if I lived in New Orleans, how could you not?! I do however enjoy having my bowl of jambalaya (that recipe is coming tomorrow) and a little something sweet like these King Cake Baked Doughnuts!
So why didn’t I just make a King Cake you’re asking yourself? Easy, I don’t need a whole cake sitting around in my kitchen begging for me to eat it. I can just see it now. I start by taking a little slice to give it a taste, then an hour later I pick off another little piece, and then by the end of the day half the cake is gone. Anyone else had that happen? I lack some serious self control when there are baked goodies in my house!
These King Cake Baked Doughnuts were the perfect solution to my cake weakness. I could still have all the flavors of the King Cake, but in a smaller amount. If you’ve never had a King Cake here’s the scoop on it. The yeasted cake dough is similar to a sweet danish type dough. It’s in a wreath shape, full of cinnamon flavor, covered in icing, and often has a plastic baby doll inside or underneath the cake. Well I took all of those elements minus the wreath shape and hiding a plastic doll inside (sorry I couldn’t find one) and made these delicious little King Cake Baked Doughnuts!
Since the dough is yeasted, it does take a little extra time to make them because they need to rise, but it’s totally worth it. The doughnuts are light and pillowy and exploding with cinnamon flavor. While the doughnut itself is delicious, the glaze is what really sends these King Cake Baked Doughnuts over the top. The glaze is mostly made up of powdered sugar and vanilla, but being that it is Mardi Gras I spiked it with a little bourbon! The bourbon adds an amazing smokey, boozy, flavor to the doughnuts and it’s perfect with all the cinnamon. If bourbon isn’t your thing simply replace it with milk or water, but I highly recommend the bourbon, live a little my friends, it’s Mardi Gras!
Whether or not Mardi Gras is your thing, it is fun to make a couple traditional and slightly untraditional dishes to celebrate. These King Cake Baked Doughnuts are the perfect slightly untraditional, but just as delicious treat to make. Bake a batch of these doughnuts to share with friends, coworkers, or family, and get in the New Orleans spirit!
- 1/2 cup skim milk, heated to 115 degrees
- 1/2 tablespoon active dry yeast
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
- 3/4-1 cup all purpose flour, plus more for kneading
- 1/2 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 2 tablespoons plain non fat Greek yogurt
Vanilla Bourbon Glaze
- 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon low fat cream cheese, softened
- 1 tablespoon bourbon, or milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Purple, yellow, and green sprinkles for topping
- Heat the milk to 115 degrees then add in the yeast and whisk it until it has dissolved.
- Add in the sugar and let them sit for 5 minutes.
- Add the yeast mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer along with the egg and vanilla extract.
- Beat on medium speed with the paddle attachment until they are combined.
- In a separate bowl whisk together the flours, salt, and cinnamon.
- With the mixer on low, add in the flour mixture a 1/4 cup at a time until the dough starts to come together and pull away from the sides of the bowl.
- When the dough starts to come together, stop the mixer, remove the paddle attachment, and put on the dough hook.
- Increase the mixer speed to medium and add in the butter and Greek yogurt a tablespoon at a time until it is incorporated into the dough.
- Reduce the mixer speed to low and add additional flour to the dough a tablespoon at a time if needed.
- The dough should be soft, but not overly sticky.
- Dump the dough out onto a floured surface and knead it until it is no longer sticky.
- Spray a large bowl with cooking spray and place the dough into the bowl and cover it tightly with plastic wrap or a damp tea towel.
- Let the dough raise in a warm dry spot for an hour or until it has doubled in size.
- Once the dough has risen, punch it down with your fist.
- Roll the dough out on a floured surface until it is about 1/2 an inch thick.
- Using a 3 1/2 inch doughnut cutter or a 2 inch round cookie cutter, cut out the doughnuts and lay them out on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silpat mat.
- Cover the doughnuts with plastic wrap or a damp tea towel and let them rise a second time for about 20 minutes or until doubled in size.
- While the doughnuts are rising preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Place the doughnuts on the middle rack of the oven and bake for 5-7 minutes.
- Transfer the doughnuts to a wire cooling rack and let them cool for 20-30 minutes before dipping them in the glaze.
Vanilla Bourbon Glaze
- In a medium sized bowl add all of the ingredients for the glaze.
- Whisk them together until they are smooth.
- Dunk the top half of the cooled doughnuts into the glaze then place them back on the cooling rack.
- Immediately top the doughnuts with the sprinkles, then let them set for a few minutes so that the glaze hardens.
The doughnuts are best eaten right away. They tend to dry out by the next day.