Baked Pumpkin Donuts

Not long after I found out I was pregnant a Krispy Kreme opened up less than a mile from our house. I would drive past it every single day, often multiple times, staring at that bright red Hot Now sign just tempting me to pull in. Fast forward to the day before I was being induced. I exclaimed to my husband that I was finally going to get that donut that I had resisted for far too long. Excited as two kids on Christmas morning (Jason patiently waited nine months for me to finally cave in to my donut craving) we hopped into the car and were on our way. As we got closer I realized that the Hot Now sign was not on and as my heart sunk I quickly stopped Jason from pulling in. For those of you who are not familiar that bright red sign simply means that the original plain donuts are hot and fresh out of the fryer and will literally melt in your mouth. That sign being on and the taste of those glazed donuts was what I knew and loved as a kid and If I was going to finally get my donut fix I was going to do it right. For me that meant a bright red sign and a ooey, gooey hot glazed donut. Sadly, we went back home.

We filled our day doing last minute things around the house and getting ready for our trip to the hospital the next day. That night Jason ran out to get some take-out and as he walked in the back door the first thing I saw was a donut box. He told me that on his way to pick up dinner he saw that the Hot Now sign was on and immediately pulled in. Not wanting to waste another second of that hot glazed donut from getting into my belly immediately opened the box and ate every last bite. I may or may not have danced around my kitchen with my very large belly while doing so. I was a sight to behold that's for sure. Perhaps it was the fact that I had waited so long for that little treat and I was 41 weeks pregnant but that donut was quit possibly the best I had ever had.

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Needless to say I love donuts. I am not going to tell you that these pumpkin donuts compare to the original glazed donuts from Krispy Kreme but they are pretty darn good, and much healthier. They are baked rather than fried and since they are moistened by the pumpkin puree I chose to substitute just a bit of unsweetened applesauce in place of the oil. The glaze wasadded simply because it was the right thing to do.

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These pumpkin donuts are soft, cake-like, and full of spice yet light enough to allow me to indulge in a treat that I have always loved. They make a wonderful treat for the fall and easy enough for a special weekend breakfast for you and your family.

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Baked Pumpkin Donuts
- 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1/4 teaspoon cloves
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup canned pumpkin
- 1/2 cup milk (I used Almond)
Glaze
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons Almond milk

Directions:
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- In a large bowl mix together the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and sugar.
- In a separate bowl mix the applesauce, egg, vanilla, pumpkin and milk. Pour the wet ingredients in with the dry and stir till just combined.
- Add batter to a greased donut pan by carefully spooning the batter evenly around the circles of the donut rings. Fill each nearly to the top. onto a wire rack and allow to cool for a few minutes.
- Bake for 11-13 minutes. Turn donuts out onto a wire rack and allow to cool for a few minutes.
- While the donuts are cooling, heat the powdered sugar, cinnamon, and milk in a small saucepan, continuously whisking the mixture. Using tongs, or some other cooking utensil, dip the top of each donut into the glaze.Serve immediately.

Allie

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