Apple Cider Baked Donut Holes

Apple cider baked donut holes are the perfect way to celebrate fall flavors!

How many of you think apples get the cold shoulder when fall rolls around? I mean pumpkin is the BIG thing, and apples just get shoved aside like they don’t matter. I’m going to change this today because I love a good apple, and I love apple-flavored desserts even more. There’s just something about waltzing through an apple orchard, where each and every sweet bite is just in arms reach. Oh, and the baskets. The baskets are my favorite part. It almost makes me want to start my OWN orchard! Almost… Since moving to Colorado, the orchards aren’t as frequent as they were growing up in the rainy northeast. Sure we have our fair share of peach tree orchards, and there are some others floating around, but it’s just not the same. I blame it on Colorado’s unending dryness, which I’m not upset about: 300 days of sunshine! Woot Woot! Anyway, when apples are REALLY in season, I go crazy over them. These apple cider baked donut holes are the perfect way to make apples shine this fall.

Over the years, I have been 100% unsuccessful at making a traditional donut. You know the kind that are circular…and delicious…and gorgeous…and I could just go on. Now, I’m not talking about the baked version. I pretty much have that mastered, but I’ve only made donut rings once and posted about it.

If you just HAVE to know this recipe (I don’t really blame you), here it is: Chocolate Glazed Baked Donuts. They were pretty delicious. I’m not going to lie.

I didn’t know it then, but I think that will be the last time I ever make donut rings because donut holes are just SOOOOOOO much easier, and let’s be honest, they are just downright adorable.

These apple cider baked donut holes are a “glorified” mini muffin. Actually, they really are just a mini muffin, but they somehow come out looking just like a donut hole. It’s all in the baking powder guys…the baking powder.

Using just a simple muffin recipe, these delectable, apply treats are loaded with spice, apple sauce and apple cider. They are baked to perfection in a 350 degree F oven and then rolled around in a cinnamon and sugar mixture.

They are AHHHmazing, and slightly dangerous. Before you know it, you will have eaten 10. Trust me…I have done this.

Before we go along any further, let’s pair these little cuties with some beer!


Beer Love:
Beer: Odell Brewing’s Lugene
Brewery: Odell Brewing Co.
Style: Milk/Sweet Stout
ABV: 8.5%
Description: I knew I needed a special beer for this pairing, and it has been quite some time since I paired with one of my favorite beers of all time: Odell Brewing’s Lugene. Imagine chocolate…and a ton of it, mixed with the malty sweetness you get from a milk stout. I LOVE this beer, and I love it even more for these apple cider baked donut holes. Lugene is special, and now that we are getting into some cooler temperatures (kind of … it was basically 90 degrees today … I know …), I find it totally ok to indulge in some Lugene. I wanted something “milky” for this beer pairing, and Lugene is just that. The sweetness from the chocolate really compliments these donut holes. Everything about Lugene is amazing, so please, please, please pick up some the next time you are at the bottle shop!


Have a great day guys! Save this recipe and share it to your little heart’s content. ;)



Apple Cider Baked Donut Holes

Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 24


For the muffins:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoons ground cloves
  • 1 cup applesauce
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup apple cider
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the cinnamon-sugar mixture:

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter melted


  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and spray a mini muffin pan with non-stick spray. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder, cinnamon, ground nutmeg, allspice, salt and ground cloves until thoroughly combined. Set aside.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the applesauce, milk, apple cider, brown sugar, vegetable oil, egg and vanilla extract until smooth.
  • Add the wet ingredients to the dry and fold the ingredients together until just moistened. Do not over-mix.
  • Fill the mini muffin molds up 3/4 of the way with the batter. Bake at 350 degrees F for 13-15 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Set aside to cool for 2-3 minutes in the pan.
  • While the muffins are cooling, mix the granulated sugar and cinnamon in a shallow bowl. In another shallow bowl, add the melted butter. Coat each donut hole with melted butter and transfer to the cinnamon-sugar. Roll each one to evenly coat. Transfer to a wire rack to cool the rest of the way.
  • The donut holes will store in an air-tight container for 2-3 days. Enjoy!