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Easiest Donut Recipe Ever

Shelley
Posted by Shelley on Jan 8, 2021

I am not the biggest dessert fan in the world, but I do love dessert for breakfast. I especially love donuts for breakfast and even more, when they are extremely fresh, warm and just out of the fryer.

When I was growing up in Fort Dodge, Iowa there were no donut shops, at least not until the mid-70’s when Mr. Donut came to town.

However, I was not completely deprived of donuts because my grandmother Ruby made them occasionally. She only made them occasionally because her donut production was a spectacular sight to behold and anything but easy. She made her donuts monstrously big; in fact, my Uncle Virgil said she used a coffee can to cut them. She could only fry one at a time because one was all she could fit in the pan! It was a giant production as she would mound dinner-plate sized donuts in an enormous pile on the dining room table. She would spend days in the kitchen making them and everyone was welcome to come and enjoy them.

My Aunt Geneva told me many years later the story behind these donuts. Because they were so poor and it was difficult to make ends meet most of the time, my grandmother rarely had the opportunity to spoil her children. So the donuts were how she spoiled her children: they were allowed to eat mounds and mounds of dinner plate-sized, fluffy, glazed donuts. They could eat as many as they wanted, as often as they wanted, for days.

My grandmother was a quiet woman, smart as a whip, energetic, kind, and she had eyes that smiled. Just imagine the visual of this for me as a small child: my grandmother making giant donuts by hand for days, frying egregious amounts of dough and piling them onto the dining room table… all for the love of her children. It is still one of the most heartwarming scenes I have ever witnessed!

SY grandparents

Grandma Ruby and well-fed Grandpa Virgil

This recipe may be the antithesis of the donut production of my grandmother. I suppose that would be the blessing and the curse of this recipe, because it can be made in a matter of minutes. I don’t really think that just because something doesn’t take a tremendous amount of effort that it doesn’t have a lot of thought behind it. Fresh warm donuts are absolutely one of the simplest pleasures you could possibly share with someone you love. I felt like right now was the perfect time to share some donut love with you so you can spread a little to those you love. 

donut 1

 

Ricotta Fritters

Scroll down for a printable version of this recipe

Yield: 1 to 2 dozen (depending on how big you make them)

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

 

For the batter:

1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 Tablespoons sugar

Zest of 1 lemon

1/4 teaspoon fine salt

1 cup ricotta cheese

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 Tablespoons milk

 

Powdered sugar for dusting

Oil, shortening or lard for frying

donut deep fry set up

1. Heat the oil in a wide, heavy pan until it reaches 365º on a deep-fry thermometer. You need enough oil to fill the pan 2 to 3 inches deep.

2. While the oil is heating, prepare the batter. In a small bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt.

dry ingredients-Jan-07-2021-12-43-51-34-AM

3. In a large bowl whisk together the ricotta cheese, eggs, lemon zest, vanilla extract and milk. Whisk the flour mixture into the wet ingredients.

dry and wet ingredients

dry into wet ingredients

4. Working in batches, gently drop in tablespoon-size dollops of the batter into the oil. Fry, turning occasionally, until golden brown.

half fritters in oil

fritters done

5. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the fritters to a rack set over a sheet tray to drain.

fritters on rack

6. Set on a platter, and dust with powdered sugar.

donut 3

What is even better than a super quick tasty donut recipe? One that is versatile! So let's take this one recipe and turn into a few new recipes. 

donut 2

Once you perfect a recipe, it is a lot easier to make some simple adjustments to it than to learn a whole new recipe. I wanted to give you some ideas on how you can modify this super tasty recipe into some new donuts.

AppleFriters

Apple Fritters

For the batter:

1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon fine salt

1 cup ricotta cheese

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 tablespoons apple cider

1 apple, peeled and diced

Follow the exact same instructions as the original recipe substituting the ingredients respectively, stirring the apples in at the end.

Top this one with a glaze of:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons apple cider
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

jelly fritters

Jelly Fritters

For the batter:

1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 Tablespoons sugar

1/4 teaspoon fine salt

1 cup ricotta cheese

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 Tablespoons milk

Follow the exact same instructions as the original recipe substituting the ingredients respectively.

Roll the fritters in granulated sugar after removing from the fryer. Make an indentation with your finger in the donut and top with a dollop of good jam.

donut indentation

donuts filled

The idea of modifying a base recipe is really the foundation of cooking. Feel free to make your own adjustments to this recipe, and share your results in the comments section below. If you keep the ratios the same, you should have great results. For example, you can use almond, rum or coconut extract instead of vanilla. You can toss the donuts in powdered sugar, cinnamon sugar or lavender sugar. You can make assorted glazes with chocolate, orange or Nutella. If glazing, you can add other toppings like sprinkles or peanuts on top of the glaze. You can make additions like we did with the apple fritters: you can add chocolate chips, dried cherries or toasted walnuts (about a 1/2 cup). Have fun, play around and make these your own.

If you want to get more in-depth into donuts join us for our upcoming virtual Donut Workshop this Saturday, January 9 at 3pm CST.Register now

If you feel the need to temper yourself from a season filled with cookies, fudge and fondue, you may want to add our new healthy classes to your list in order to balance out the donut consumption. Join us for:

See our class calendar

 

Yield: 1-2 dozen fritters
Author: The Chopping Block
Ricotta Fritters

Ricotta Fritters

Prep time: 5 MinCook time: 10 MinTotal time: 15 Min

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 Tablespoons sugar
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 Tablespoons milk
  • Powdered sugar for dusting
  • Oil, shortening or lard for frying

Instructions

  1. Heat the oil in a wide, heavy pan until it reaches 365º on a deep-fry thermometer. You need enough oil to fill the pan 2 to 3 inches deep.
  2. While the oil is heating, prepare the batter. In a small bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt.
  3. In a large bowl whisk together the ricotta cheese, eggs, lemon zest, vanilla extract and milk. Whisk the flour mixture into the wet ingredients.
  4. Working in batches, gently drop in tablespoon-size dollops of the batter into the oil. Fry, turning occasionally, until golden brown.
  5. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the fritters to a rack set over a sheet tray to drain.
  6. Set on a platter, and dust with powdered sugar.

Topics: donuts, ricotta, fritter, desserts, donut, dessert, Recipes, jam, fritters

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