Try a breakfast treat that puts a sweet and tangy spring in your step, like these light and easy Baked Lemon Donuts!
Lemony and light, these Baked Lemon Donuts are simple to make and so quick to devour! Using pantry staples like butter, flour, sugar, and eggs along with tart lemon juice and lemon zest is a sure way to make a bright-tasting breakfast the family will be excited about.
When Life Gives You Lemons…
In this house, we love all things lemon. For us, the tart, sourness of the lemon paired with sugary sweets is just perfect because we feel like we can eat a lot of it and not get that really heavy feeling other desserts, I mean breakfast, can give you. Obviously, we had to try these amazing baked lemon donuts and the results were a big morning happy dance! I really liked that we baked these and I didn’t have to fuss with frying first thing in the morning. I also realized that I simply do not use my donut pan enough so extra points for this recipe! Because we like lemon so much, I also added a bit more lemon zest sprinkled on top for extra flavor and extra flair and the only thing that was disappointing was the lack of leftovers for me to snack on throughout the day!
Other Recipes to Serve with Baked Lemon Donuts
- If you love donuts and love your air fryer, these Air Fryer Donuts are calling your name!
- All lemon lovers love Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins– they are quick to make and the perfect time crunch breakfast.
Refrigerated: You’ll need butter, a room temperature egg, and vanilla flavored yogurt.
Pantry: Flour, brown sugar, baking soda, salt, and lemon for juicing and zesting are all you need.
Lemon Icing: You’ll need the zest from one lemon and 2 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice so depending on the size of your lemon, you may need two lemons. Confectioners sugar and butter will also be used, along with food coloring and sprinkles, if you choose.
How to Make Baked Lemon Donuts
STEP ONE: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and grease a donut pan with butter and flour. Whisk together the melted butter, brown sugar, yogurt, and egg in a bowl. Stir together the flour, brown sugar, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl.
STEP TWO: Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until just mixed- the batter will be pretty thick. Fold in the lemon zest.
STEP THREE: Place the batter in a piping bag or in a large Ziploc bag. If you’re using a zip lock bag, cut the bottom corner on one side for piping the batter. Pipe the batter into the prepared donut pan.
STEP FOUR: Bake the donuts for 8-10 minutes until golden. Allow the donuts to cool in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack for another 5 minutes.
STEP FIVE: While the donuts are cooling, mix the lemon zest and confectioners sugar in a medium bowl. Add the butter and lemon juice and mix until the icing is creamy. Dip the tops of each donut in the icing and put them back on the cooling rack to set. Place parchment paper under the cooling racks to catch any icing that drips.
Tips for Success
- Make sure your donut pan is well greased to prevent sticking. If you are using one pan, make sure to wipe the pan clean and re-grease well before adding more batter.
- You can color the icing with yellow food coloring for more of a “lemon” look! One drop goes a long way so mix the icing well and check the color before adding more. The food coloring will thin the icing to a glaze translucent consistency, so if you want it thicker you will need to add more confectioners sugar.
- The donut batter in this recipe is very thick, so if you don’t have a piping bag you defintely want use a Ziploc bag with the corner cut off to pipe. It would be very difficult to spoon the batter into the donut pan.
What if I only have plain yogurt?
If you have plain yogurt or you like to use plain Greek yogurt in your recipes, you can add one teaspoon of vanilla extract and an additional ⅛ cup of brown sugar to the plain yogurt, mix and then add the yogurt to the wet ingredients as stated in the recipe.
You could also use lemon-flavored yogurt instead of vanilla yogurt for a sweeter lemon punch!
How long do the Baked Lemon Donuts last?
These donuts are the freshest the day they are made but leftovers can be refrigerated for 1-2 days in an airtight container. Bring the Baked Lemon Donuts to room temperature before enjoying.
More Lemon To Love
- Lemon Macadamia Scones
- Lemon Ricotta Pancakes
- Lemon Cream Cheese Danish
- Lemon Pound Cake French Toast Skewers
- Blueberry Lemon Coffee Cake
- 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
- 1 lemon zested and juiced
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- Yellow food coloring (optional)
- Sprinkles (optional)
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Grease two donut pans with butter and flour and set aside. (If you only have one pan you can work in batches, just be sure to grease the pan before baking the second batch.)
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
- Ina large mixing bowl, whisk together the melted butter, brown sugar, egg, and vanilla yogurt. Add the dry ingredients to the bowl. Stir until just combined with a wooden spoon. (The batter will be very stiff.) Fold in the lemon zest.
- Transfer the donut batter to a disposable piping bag and pipe into the prepared donut pans. (see note)
- Bake for 8- 10 minutes until donuts are golden brown. Allow donuts to cool for 5 minutes in the pan before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
- In a medium mixing bowl whisk together the powdered sugar and lemon zest. Then whisk in the melted butter and lemon juice until the icing is smooth and creamy. (If you want a thicker icing, add more powdered sugar.) If you're using yellow food coloring, start with a drop and whisk. Add more until your desired color is reached.
- Dip the tops of the cooled donuts in the icing and then return them to the wire rack placed over a baking sheet. This will catch any icing that drips down the sides. If you're using sprinkles add them on top of the donuts immediately. Then let the donuts rest until the icing is set.
- The donut batter in this recipe is very thick. If you do not have a disposable piping bag, use a ziplock bag with the corner cut off to pipe the batter as it would be very difficult to spoon the batter into the donut pan.
- These donuts are freshest the day they are made. The leftovers can be refrigerated in an airtight container for 1-2 days. They can be brought to room temperature before eating.