Warmly spiced and cake-y like the best pumpkin bread, these baked pumpkin donuts make a really easy festive fall dessert. They're dipped in a maple vanilla glaze and sprinkled with chopped pecans.
Hello! You've found my very first recipe blog post, though it may not look like it. These photos got a much-needed makeover in September 2016, with additional step-by-step photos added in September 2023. Scroll down to see an original photo from October 2013.
Is there a relationship more alluring than the one between bloggers and pumpkin?
As a long-time blog reader (now first time blogger) I'd always look forward to the seasonal deluge of pumpkin recipes, stocking up on cans of pumpkin puree long before Thanksgiving rolled around in case of a shortage. I remember the great pumpkin shortage of 2000-something...never again!
If you're looking for something other than pumpkin bread or pumpkin muffins to make this year, why not try baked pumpkin donuts? See also this compilation of 16+ canned pumpkin recipes to make this fall.
Reasons to Make These Donuts
- They're a fun and festive dessert that doesn't take much effort to make. They have the same prep steps as muffins, only with a different pan.
- You can enjoy the warm, cozy flavors and cake-y texture of pumpkin bread with a much quicker bake time.
- The maple vanilla glaze is the perfect icing on the
There are two parts of this baked pumpkin donut recipe: the donuts themselves and the glaze.
- Pumpkin Puree: Make sure to use 100% pumpkin puree and not canned pumpkin pie filling, as that would add extra sweeteners and spices that we don't need.
- Sugars: A blend of granulated and brown.
- Oil: For a tender crumb. Choose a neutral-flavored variety like vegetable or canola.
- Spices: The recipe card has ground cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg listed out separately, but you can replace them with a pre-mixed pumpkin pie spice blend if you like.
The glaze is powdered sugar based, but also includes maple syrup for a smooth thickness and flavor, as well as more vanilla extract and cinnamon.
- Dry Ingredients - Whisk together flour, baking powder, spices, and salt.
- Wet Ingredients - Separately whisk together pumpkin puree, the sugars, eggs, oil, and vanilla extract.
- Combine - Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl of dry ingredients and mix until combined.
- Pipe - Spoon or pipe batter into a greased donut pan. You'll likely need to bake these pumpkin donuts in two batches.
- Bake - Bake at 350°F for 10-12 minutes, then invert onto a wire rack until completely cool.
- Ice - Whisk together the glaze ingredients and dunk the smooth side of each cooled donut in it. Let harden before storing or serving.
Recipe Tips and Tricks
- Donut Pan - This recipe is written for a 3.25-inch diameter donut pan, not mini, jumbo, or whatever other size you might find out there.
- Other Pan Sizes - Don't feel like baking two batches of pumpkin donuts? Consider baking excess batter in a mini muffin tray.
- Don't Overmix - Overmixing can lead to tougher, less tender baked goods. The gluten proteins in the flour start developing once they hit liquid, so mixing the batter too much once the dry and wet ingredients are combined can lead to texture issues.
Frequently Asked Questions
These donuts become even more moist over time as they're stored. I've found storing them at room temperature in an air-tight container with the lid cracked open to be the best way to combat any excessive moisture that develops.
Instead of chopped pecans, decorate the glaze with fall-themed sprinkles: leaves, pumpkins, etc. You can also make a chocolate glaze if you like that flavor combination. Switch out this In lieu of a glaze, you can also press warm donuts in cinnamon sugar.
And here it is - the very first photo I took for the blog nearly 10 years ago. I'm self-taught and certainly not a photography expert by any means, but I think it's safe to say the improvement is staggering.
More Pumpkin Recipes
If you’ve enjoyed this recipe, I’d love for you to leave a star rating in the recipe card and/or a comment review below!
Baked Pumpkin Donuts
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup packed brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- ⅓ cup vegetable or canola oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1-2 shakes of ground cinnamon to taste
- 1-3 teaspoons milk as needed to thin
- Chopped pecans for topping
- Bake the donuts: Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease a donut pan with cooking spray and set aside for now.
- Whisk together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and salt in a medium mixing bowl.
- Beat together the pumpkin puree, both sugars, the eggs, oil, and vanilla extract on medium speed in a separate mixing bowl until creamy and smooth.
- Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients. Stir to combine evenly and no dry streaks remain.
- Spoon half of the batter evenly into the six donut pan wells, or add batter to a piping bag/large plastic bag, seal it, and snip off a corner so you can pipe the batter into the pan. Fill each well to just below the top surface.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the thickest part comes out clean and the tops spring back when lightly pressed. Invert donuts onto wire rack once baked.
- Re-spray the donut pan and repeat the process for the remaining batter. Let the donuts cool completely before glazing.
- Glaze the donuts: Once the donuts have completely cooled, whisk together the confectioners' sugar, maple syrup, vanilla extract, and cinnamon until smooth. Add milk, one teaspoon at a time, and whisk until the glaze is to your preferred consistency. Dip the "smooth" side of each donut into glaze.
- If desired, sprinkle chopped pecans over top and let the glaze harden before serving or storing.
Nutritional information is provided as an estimate. As it can vary due to many factors (brands used, quantities, etc.), we cannot guarantee its accuracy.Food Safety and Nutrition Disclaimer