This Buttermilk Doughnuts Recipe without yeast uses baking powder instead. It’s a simple doughnut recipe that makes a crispy, fluffy doughnut.
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This is my mother-in-law’s classic doughnut recipe. She has made it for years and taught and shared it with many of her friends. Now she shared it with me, and I’m so excited to share it with you!
This recipe is part of a blog hop, so make sure to check out my friend’s post down below. The theme of today’s post is a copycat recipe, and mine is inspired by my mother-in-law’s recipe and Joanna Gaines’s Syrian Donut recipe in her Magnolia Table Cookbook as well.
Who doesn’t love a delicious crispy doughnut?
Well, I was ready for the task even though I have never made doughnuts. And my first task was to ask my mother-in-law, Margaret, for her classic non-yeasted doughnut recipe.
Margaret loves to bake and has quite a few favorite recipes. So, on our trip to visit them, I asked her for some of her recipes. She was tickled that I wanted her doughnut recipe. We talked about making the doughnuts during our visit, but somehow we didn’t have the time for a baking lesson.
Well, no worries, I had the recipe and lots of helpful tips from Margaret.
Here are some recipes from both Margaret and my mom Amy!
- The Best Blueberry Buckle Recipe
- Amy’s Almond Cookie Recipe
- The Best Crunchy Crispy Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe
How to Make Margaret’s Buttermilk Doughnuts Recipe
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Step 1 – Make Sugar Topping
In a medium-size bowl, add sugar, cinnamon, and mix.
Step 2 – Prepare Crisco
In a somewhat tall saucepan, place Criso in the pan and turn heat to a medium to low flame. Place a frying thermometer in the oil and heat up to 370 degrees.
Step 3 – Make Dough
In another bowl, mix flour, salt, baking powder, and cinnamon. Add flour mixture to the butter mixture. Mix thoroughly. Then add buttermilk slowly while mixing thoroughly after each addition of milk. If the dough is dry, add more buttermilk one tablespoon at a time.
Step 4 – Rollout Dough
Take half the dough and turn it out on a well-floured counter. The dough should be about 1/4 inch in thickness. Cut dough into doughnut shapes using a 2 3/4 inch doughnut cutter. I like the smaller doughnut cutter!
Step 5 – Fry Doughnuts
So, working in small batches of three to four doughnuts, cook them in hot oil (370 degrees). Flip them once the underside is golden in color. This step can take about three to five minutes. The oil temperature will vary, but it will be fine as long as you are in the 350-370 degree range.
Next, remove the doughnut from the oil with a slotted spoon and drain as much fat as you can. Then place the warm doughnut in your sugar and cinnamon mixture and coat both sides of the doughnut.
- 1¾ cup flour
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- 1 tbsp butter room temperature
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 egg beaten
- ⅓ cup buttermilk add 1 tbsp of buttermilk at a time if the dough is dry
- ½ tsp lemon extract
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- 24 ounces Crisco
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- In a small bowl, combine ¾ cup sugar and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon.
Prep the Frying Oil
- Place half the container (about 24 ounces) of Crisco in a 4-7 quart saucepot. You want to choose a deep saucepot that is deep. That way, the Crisco doesn't splatter. Also, the oil should be deep enough so the doughnuts do not touch the bottom of the pan.
- Place a frying thermometer in the oil, making sure it doesn't touch the bottom of the pan.
- Turn on the burner to medium to low heat.
- Melt oil and get the temperature to 370°
- While the oil is heating, mix butter, sugar, egg in a bowl.
- In another bowl, mix flour, salt, baking powder, and cinnamon.
- Add flour mixture to the butter mixture. Mix thoroughly.
- Add buttermilk slowly to avoid getting the dough too wet. But, if the dough is dry, add more buttermilk, 1 tablespoon at a time.
- Add lemon extract and zest to the dough and mix.
- Take half the dough and turn it out on a well-floured counter. Keep adding flour if the dough sticks to the surface. The dough should be about 1/4 inch in thickness. Cut dough into doughnut shapes using a 2 1/2-inch doughnut cutter.
- After cutting out your doughnuts, press the dough together and roll it out. Cut more doughnuts until all the dough is used.
- Once the doughnuts are cut out, I coat them lightly with flour while they are waiting to be fried. The light dusting of flour keeps them from sticking to the countertop.
- Check the temperature of the oil frequently. Working in small batches of three to four doughnuts, cook them in the hot oil (370°). Flip them once the underside is golden in color. This step can take about three to five minutes. The oil temperature will vary, but it will be fine if you are in the 350-370 degree range.
- Next, remove the doughnut from the oil with a slotted spoon and drain as much oil as you can.
- Then place the warm doughnut in your sugar and cinnamon mixture and coat both sides of the doughnut. Store doughnuts in an air-tight container for a couple of days.
Tips to Making These Buttermilk Doughnuts
- Dough – Add buttermilk slowly to the flour mixture. I found my dough needed different amounts of buttermilk with each batch. Probably since I didn’t weigh the dry ingredients there is a bit of variation in measurements.
- Doughnut Cutter – I use a small one it’s 2 3/4″ in diameter. I feel that the smaller size cutter creates a crispier doughnut. I don’t have any evidence but my family loves the more petite doughnuts. Also, they’re easier to manage when frying.
- Oil Heat – When the oil is too hot (above 370) the doughnuts can burn quickly. So always check your deep fryer thermometer before adding the dough.
- Small Batches – Frying the doughnuts can be a bit overwhelming since they cook so quickly. So to avoid over cooking, only work in small batches.
- Crisco for Frying – My mother-in-law insisted I use crisco for frying the doughnuts. I bet you can use a vegetable oil and the doughnuts will come out fine. I used Crisco since she insisted. I will try using the vegetable oil later and I’ll post my results here in this tips section.
Well, I guess it was awesome that I asked my mother-in-law for her buttermilk doughnuts recipe. She couldn’t find her original recipe when we were visiting, so we all got busy looking for it. Thank goodness my husband found it in my father-in-law’s rolltop desk!
Margaret hadn’t made her doughnuts in a while, and my interest in them got her baking again. She now makes them for all her lovely friends who are so gracious to stop by and visit!
Here’s to all those classic recipes floating out there in old cookbooks.
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