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Bake Heart-Shaped Gluten-Free Cake Donuts For Your Sweetheart

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Cake Donuts made with Wilton's Nonstick 6-Cavity Heart Donut Pan
Credit: Marie 2375 "Busy Mama" Amazon Customer Image

Everyone has fun baking and decorating donuts...

Baked donuts? Is that really a donut then? Hey, why not . . we have baked chips now.

I decided to try out three recipes with three different toppings (which you can mix and match). There's even one for my vegan friends.

All of my donut recipes are gluten-free, however, you can use gluten-containing ingredients and they will be just as fabulous (just omit the xanthan gum). Each recipe makes 12 - 15 donuts.

My personal reason for avoiding anything deep fried

In my 30's, genetic testing revealed I had FH[1] (familial hypercholesterolemia). This defect on chromosome 19 just means that my is body unable to remove low density lipoprotein (LDL, or "bad") cholesterol from my blood. I have avoided anything deep fried ever since.

The incidence of heterozygous FH (in the U.S.) is about 1 case in 500 people (when inherited from one parent, like me). The prevalence of homozygous FH (from two mutated alleles) is only 1 case in 1 million persons. 

Perhaps being 1 in a million really depends

Or even 1 in 500...

With a little more digging, I found out there are wide variations in the prevalence of FH elsewhere in the world.

Surprisingly, Finland and Iceland have a higher rate than the U.S. and the prevalence of heterozygous FH among French Canadians is 1 case per 270 persons. In South Africa, some groups have a much higher rate of FH - with 1 case in 67 Ashkenazi Jews being the most affected (to date).[2]

And for years, before this was discovered, my former family doctor thought I was eating junk food all the time (even though I was athletic and a health nut). So if you have been doing everything to lower your cholesterol and it's still a mystery, you may wish to consider getting genetic testing done too.


 

Iced and Decorated Heart-Shaped Donuts
Credit: Amazon.com

It's more heart-healthy to eat baked donuts...

I thought this pan was absolutely adorable.

Wilton Nonstick 6-Cavity Heart Donut Pan
Amazon Price: $9.99 $5.52 Buy Now
(price as of Feb 5, 2014)
Fill each hole about 2/3rd full with batter. NOTE: If you happen to put in more, a little heart-shaped cavity is formed which can be filled with jelly (or you can simply trim it out). For families, I recommend purchasing two pans so you can make a dozen donuts at the same time. Cake donuts tend to taste fresher longer than yeast donuts.

I haven't had a good cinnamon cake donut in ages

So, I decided to make some...

Cinnamon Donut (cross-section)
Credit: Tavallai on flickr / Licensed under Creative Commons Atrribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic

Insanely Good Cinnamon Baked Donut recipe

I adapted this recipe from the October 31st, 2012 edition of The Washington Post[3] (and made it gluten-free). I use salted butter - if you use unsalted, add 1/2 tsp. kosher salt to the batter.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups gluten-free all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/4 tsp. xanthan gum (omit if using regular all-purpose flour)
  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 tsp. Magic baking powder
  • 1 tsp. pure ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg (freshly grated if possible)
  • 1 extra-large egg (lightly beaten)
  • 1-1/4 cups whole milk
  • 2 tbsp. salted butter (melted)
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract

Cinnamon-Sugar Coating

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. G-F ground cinnamon

Instructions

  1. Make sure your oven rack is in the center position. Preheat to 350 F. Lightly grease donut pan(s).
  2. In a large bowl, whisk (or mix) together: gluten-free flour, xanthan gum, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
  3. In a medium bowl, lightly beat the egg and then add milk, melted butter and vanilla extract (stirring well). Add this mixture to the dry ingredients (in the large bowl) and mix until JUST combined. (Don't overdo the mixing, or the donuts will be less airy).
  4. Fill donut holes 2/3 full.  TIP: With the ones that create a little well, you could put custard, pudding or jam in the donut center (rather than cut away the excess dough).
  5. OPTIONAL: Instead of spooning the batter into donut pan(s), try filling a large ziploc bag with the batter, cut a corner and pipe the batter into the holes. (Makes the donuts smoother on top and with less chances of getting batter on the other surfaces of the pan).
  6. Bake for about 13 - 17 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean and the donuts are puffed and lightly browned. While the donuts are baking, prepare the cinnamon-sugar coating.
  7. Topping: In a small saute pan, melt 1/2 cup butter (medium-low heat) and remove from heat to cool a bit. In a wide, shallow bowl, whisk together the sugar and cinnamon.
  8. Once donuts are pulled from the oven, allow them to cool in their pan(s) for 5 minutes. Prepare your decorating space with a platter for the donuts, a brush for the melted butter, and the cinnamon-sugar mixture nearby.
  9. Brush the warm donuts with melted butter, dip each into the cinnamon-sugar mixture on one or both sides. Enjoy warm or allow to cool.

My favorite G-F vegan white cake donuts

I adapted this from PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) recipe titled Vegan White Cake[6].

If you are not using gluten-free pastry flour, I still recommend pastry flour over all-purpose flour (it gives them that melt-in-your-mouth texture).

Ingredients

  • 1-3/4 cups gluten-free pastry flour (I use Astoria Mills brand)
  • 1 tsp. xanthan gum (omit if using regular pastry flour)
  • 1 tsp. Magic baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher (or sea) salt
  • 1/3 cup Becel Vegan OR Earth Balance spread
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 2 tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar

Instructions

  1. Adjust oven racks to ensure donut pan(s) will be in the center of your oven. Preheat to 350 F. Lightly grease donut pan(s).
  2. In a large bowl, mix or sift together: gluten-free pastry flour, xanthan gum, baking powder and baking soda.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine: Becel Vegan (OR Earth Balance spread), water, apple cider vinegar, vanilla extract, salt and sugar. Add to the larger bowl (dry ingredients) and whisk together until almost smooth.
  4. Fill donut holes 2/3 full. Remember, if some have a little well, you could put custard, pudding or jam in the donut center (rather than cut away the excess dough).
  5. OPTIONAL: Instead of spooning the batter into donut pan(s), try filling a large ziploc bag with the batter, cut a corner and pipe the batter into the holes. (Makes the donuts smoother on top and with less chances of getting batter on the other surfaces of the pan).
  6. Bake for about 12 - 16 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. While the donuts are baking, prepare the Gluten-free Vegan Vanilla Icing (next).
  7. Once donuts are pulled from the oven, allow them to cool in their pan(s) for 5 minutes. Prepare your decorating space with a platter for the donuts and a wire rack (to catch drips).

Gluten-Free Vegan Vanilla Icing for Donuts

This recipe is based on one I found at VeganBaking.net written by Mattie.[4]Mattie suggests any non-dairy milk and I found almond milk worked best. Soy milk was too thin as an icing - yet it'd be great for a simple glaze, I'm sure. To thicken the icing up for donuts, I gradually added a bit more icing sugar. Makes about 1 cup worth.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups + 1/4 cup (to add gradually) icing sugar (I use Redpath brand)
  • 1/4 cup Gold Label Organic Virgin coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp. almond milk (I found soy milk too thin)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • pinch salt

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients and mix until smooth (I use the Cuisinart SmartStick hand blender). Once your donuts have cooled, dip them (one-at-a-time) into the bowl and invert quickly (allow them to dry on a wire rack with a cookie sheet underneath to catch drips).
  2. NOTE: It takes about an hour for the glaze to become firm. You can speed up the process somewhat by placing the cookie sheet with wire rack in your fridge.

Gold Label Organic Virgin Coconut Oil

Available in four quantities...

16-oz glass - Gold Label Organic Virgin Coconut Oil - 1 pint
Amazon Price: $5.00 Buy Now
(price as of Feb 5, 2014)
What impressed me most about the Gold Label brand of coconut oil is that it does not contain trans fatty acids (nor any chemicals). It's cold-pressed, not mass produced using high heat. The coconuts are hand-picked from small farms in the Philippines. Independent lab testing has reported higher levels of phenolic antioxidants in the Gold Label brand than in other coconut oils.

Easy Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake Donuts

This recipe is based on one I found on page 177 of the September 2011 edition of Chatelaine magazine.  All of my cake donut recipes require only 15 minutes to prepare and yield (at least) a dozen donuts or more (depending on their size).

Ingredients

  • 1 cup milk (at room temperature)
  • 2 tbsp. instant coffee
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup gluten-free all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. Magic baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp. xanthan gum (omit if using regular all-purpose flour)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Instructions

  1. Adjust oven racks to ensure donut pan(s) will be in the center of your oven. Preheat oven to 350 F. Lightly grease donut pan(s).
  2. In a large bowl, whisk milk with coffee until dissolved; add eggs, sugar, oil, and vanilla extract - combine well.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix or sift together: gluten-free flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, xanthan gum and salt. Add to milk mixture in large bowl and mix until JUST combined. (Don't overdo the mixing, or the donuts will be less airy).
  4. Fill donut cavities 2/3rd full each.
  5. OPTIONAL: Instead of spooning the batter into donut pan(s), try filling a large ziploc bag with the batter, cut a corner and pipe the batter into the holes. (This makes the donuts smoother on top and lessens the chance of getting batter on the outer surfaces of the pan).
  6. Bake for about 12 - 16 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. While the donuts are baking, prepare the Gluten-Free Chocolate Donut Glaze (see next recipe).

Gluten-Free Chocolate Donut Glaze

I based this recipe on Alton Brown's Chocolate Doughnut Glaze[5]; however I substituted the light corn syrup for honey (it's a bit sweeter and perhaps healthier).

*Substitutions that work: Instead of bittersweet chocolate, you could also use semi-sweet chocolate chips, dark belgian chocolate, or 1/2 cup of cocoa with 4 tbsp. of sugar. If you use 1/2 cup chocolate chips, cut back a bit on the icing sugar (otherwise the glaze is too sweet).
 

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup whole milk (warmed)
  • 1 tbsp. liquid honey
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 4 oz. G-F bittersweet chocolate (chopped)*
  • 2 cups gluten-free icing sugar (sifted)

Instructions

In a medium saucepan (over medium heat) combine butter, milk, honey, and vanilla extract. Heat until butter is melted - then decrease heat to low. Add chocolate and whisk (or stir) until smooth. Scrape the glaze into a bowl that is sitting in warm water. Dip donuts and place on wire rack (over a cookie sheet to catch drips). The glaze needs about 30 minutes to set.

 

The donut my daughter loves the most

A gluten-free chocolate glazed donut with shredded coconut...

Coconut shavings on a chocolate donut
Credit: Monster Pete on flickr / Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic

For more baked (or fried) donut recipes

Note: This is not a gluten-free cookbook.

150 Best Donut Recipes: Fried or Baked
Amazon Price: $24.95 $14.75 Buy Now
(price as of Feb 5, 2014)
George Geary was a pastry chef for the Walt Disney Company. When I flipped through the pages of this book, I found the photos especially helpful. All kinds of fillings, toppings and icings are covered as well as the best equipment to use for making your own homemade donuts.
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Comments

Feb 6, 2014 12:48am
aesta1
I bookmarked this as I want to try the cinnamon cake one.
Feb 8, 2014 12:53pm
AstroGremlin
Food shaped like <3 s feeds the eye first.
Feb 8, 2014 12:53pm
AstroGremlin
Food shaped like <3 s feeds the eye first.
Feb 8, 2014 12:53pm
AstroGremlin
This comment has been deleted.
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Bibliography

  1. "Familial hypercholesterolemia." PubMed Health | U.S. National Library of Medicine - The World's Largest Medical Library. 2012.
  2. Elena Citkowitz, MD, PhD, FACP Prevalence of Cholesterol Screening and High Blood Cholesterol Among Adults — United States, 2005, 2007, and 2009. Atlanta, GA, Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR): Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 2012.
  3. "Cinnamon Baked Doughnuts." WashingtonPost.com. 31/10/2012. 3/02/2014 <Web >
  4. Mattie "Vegan Vanilla Icing." VeganBaking.net. 3/02/2014 <Web >
  5. Alton Brown "Chocolate Doughnut Glaze." FoodNetwork.com. 4/02/2014 <Web >
  6. "Vegan White Cake." PETA | People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. 4/02/2014 <Web >

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