Hazelnut baked mini doughnuts swirled with chocolate hazelnut spread. Simpler and healthier than usual.
While there are plenty of food trends that I’ll never embrace (I’m looking at you, cauliflower rice), I completely support one relatively recent trend in the food-universe: fancy-pants doughnuts.
In addition to classic cinnamon and glazed doughnuts, you can now find candy bar doughnuts, Oreo doughnuts, unicorn doughnuts, doughnuts encrusted with cereal, doughnuts stuffed with mango custard, doughnuts shot into outer space… it’s all very exciting.
Fun Fact: Boston, Massachusetts has the most doughnut stores per person.
But I’ll be honest: I generally prefer looking at fancy doughnuts than actually eating them. For one thing, gourmet doughnuts tend to be quite expensive and I don’t have the dough to spare. (Sorry, excuse the pun).
And those really pretty ones smothered in glaze and sprinkles (or Fruit Loops) are way too sweet for my palate. Nevertheless, I do love seeing those fancy pants doughnuts, both online and in the non-virtual world. And, hopefully, one day I’ll get around to re-creating some of those upscale doughnuts at home.
For now, I’m sticking to simple, easy-to-make baked doughnuts such as today’s recipe: hazelnut doughnuts swirled with chocolate hazelnut spread.
While I won’t pretend that these doughnuts are a ‘health food’, they’re certainly healthier than traditional (or non-traditional) deep-fried doughnuts. They’re baked, not fried, and there’s no butter or oil in the batter (unless your nut butter or chocolate hazelnut spread contains oil, which it might).
Despite having little jars of Nutella in these photos (aren’t those mini jars the cutest?), I actually used Peanut Butter & Co.’s ‘Chocmeister’ Dark Chocolatey Hazelnut Spread in this recipe. It’s not quite as sweet as Nutella and has a slightly stronger hazelnut flavor. But Nutella should be delicious too!
(Side note: Please note that I have received products from Peanut Butter & Co. in the past. All opinions are my own).
If you’d like to decorate these baked doughnuts, then I have a few suggestions for you. Firstly, it’s difficult to beat a classic cinnamon sugar coating. Lightly brush the warm doughnuts in butter, and then dunk them in a bowl of cinnamon sugar (made using ¼ cup granulated sugar and 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon). You can skip the butter if you’d prefer, but the cinnamon sugar won’t stick quite as well.
For something a bit more chocolate-y, top the doughnuts with melted chocolate or a simple chocolate frosting. Then sprinkle over some chopped hazelnuts, sprinkles, or whatever else you have on hand.
Fun Fact: Over 10 billion doughnuts are made in the USA every year.
- 1 large egg
- 2 tablespoons (35g) almond or hazelnut butter
- 2 tablespoons (25g) brown sugar, packed
- 2 tablespoons (30mL) maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ cup (60mL) milk
- ½ cup (65g) all purpose flour
- ¼ cup (25g) hazelnut meal
- ¾ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 - 3 tablespoons chocolate hazelnut spread
- Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Grease a 12-hole mini doughnut pan (plus two extra) with cooking oil spray.
- In a large bowl, whisk the egg with a fork. Whisk in the almond (or hazelnut) butter, brown sugar, maple syrup and vanilla extract. Pour in the milk, and whisk until completely combined.
- Add the flour, almond meal, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Mix until just combined. Gently swirl in the chocolate hazelnut spread.
- Transfer the batter to the prepared mini doughnut pan, filling each hole approximately ¾ of the way up.
- Bake for 9 - 12 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean (or with a few crumbs). Let the doughnuts sit in the pan for a few minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
Brush the doughnuts with melted butter and roll them in cinnamon sugar! Alternatively, top them with a chocolate frosting (or simply melted chocolate) and chopped hazelnuts.
Hazelnut meal is made purely from ground hazelnuts, and has a similar consistency to sand. Feel free to use hazelnut flour instead.